One of the redesigned website’s new features is a gallery where we will present the creative work of Valley artisans.
Living Snoqualmie is tagged in or sent many local residents’ creations, but we never quite knew what to do with them. The new gallery will allow us to showcase the beautiful art we receive regularly.
You may remember our first artist, Travis Wetherbee, from his suspenseful two-part story about chasing the Aurora Borealis on Rattlesnake Ridge in 2021. Wetherbee, a well-liked regular of festivals and concerts, seemed like the obvious first choice for this new feature.
Wetherbee, a Snoqualmie Valley lifer, grew up in Fall City before moving to Duvall in 2009. He and his wife Alicia were neighbors who got together in 1998 and married in 2002 after Alicia graduated from CWU. The couple has two children, Deacon, six and Laila, 11.
In 2018, when Deacon was one, Travis started taking cloud and landscape photos. Weatherbee’s first camera was an old point-and-shoot. The Wetherbees bought it right after they got married. One of his favorite things to do when he was a kid was to look through old photo albums. Says Travis, “We would have nights where that would be our entertainment, looking through photo albums at pictures of family.”
Travis eventually joined the Photography Enthusiasts of Duvall Facebook group. There, he met local photographer Rick Schump, who took him out for a hike and taught him how to use his camera and compose a good shot.
In 2020, Wetherbee was already an email marketer and volunteer umpire from 2006 to 2013 before he became a full-paid umpire when he decided to take a crack at making photography a career. He started sharing his photos with the photography group, eventually became a moderator and started Last Lite Photography.
Soon after, a friend of a friend was selling some camera equipment he bought to resell, but after trying the more sophisticated equipment, he decided to keep it. The equipment came with two lenses; after buying more, he learned and got even better at taking photos.
He befriended Morgan Henley, another local photographer/videographer who owns a production company specializing in producing music events and started photographing Seattle area music festivals and events. Wetherbee photographed 155 music events in 2022. His Facebook page is growing by leaps and bounds, currently at 7.3k followers.
In addition to the work he does with music and festivals, Wetherbee does senior portraits, trying to capture who the student really is in a photo (we’ve come a long way since the wicker chair at Yuen Lui).
At first, he didn’t consider photography a business but more a fulfilling hobby. However, his goal in the next two years is to fully transition to photography, start a media company, work with artists and agencies and buy his own venue.
Travis credits his wife Alicia and says she enables his ventures by doing everything at home. Between his day job and photography, he can be gone from early morning until late at night. He says he couldn’t do it without her.
Travis Wetherbee’s journey from a simple point-and-shoot camera to capturing the pulse of music festivals, the Valley’s beauty and crafting senior portraits with a touch of soul is genuinely inspiring. The Snoqualmie Valley is blessed to have such a gifted artist amidst its ranks, capturing its beauty and the life that pulses within. Travis’s dedication, both as a photographer and as a community member, showcases the essence of what makes this valley unique.
For those eager to explore the depth and breadth of Wetherbee’s captivating work, his stunning collections can be viewed and appreciated at Last Lite Photography on Picfair, Fine Art America and Last Lite Photography on Zenfolio. Dive into these galleries to get a glimpse of the world through Travis’s lens and, perhaps, find a piece that speaks to you.
-Featured image photo credit goes to Guinevere Roper