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Arts & Crafts: Behind the paintings with Eddie Gordon

Sep 16th, 2010 | Category: Crafts

by Brent Cole

Each October, the 300-acre, third-generation Gordon Skagit Farms transforms into an autumn and Halloween wonderland full of pumpkins, gourds and squash, beautifully crafted displays and themed paintings by co-owner Eddie Gordon. The third generation Gordon Family Farm mixes originality, art and a local focus to create a one of a kind Halloween and autumn experience.
Eddie co-owns the farm with his brother Todd, who has been running Gordon Skagit Farms for the last 10 years. Two decades ago, Eddie, who graduated from Western Washington University with a design degree, created his first painting for the farm. “Having that need or desire to create stuff has always been there. It was the perfect avenue with Halloween or fall to make it more uniquem” he said, adding, “I wanted a different twist on things.”
Greeting patrons at the farm are large four feet by eight feet, autumn landscape paintings, as well as Halloween displays and imagery. Many of the paintings are available for sale as posters during the month-long celebration in October.
According to Eddie, his artwork goes through cycles depending on what style of art is inspiring him at the time. “This year I focused on the pastels and got those made. The styles go through three or four year cycles with new things coming in.”
While Eddie loves painting, the artwork also has a practical purpose. “It’s a way for people to identify us,” he said. “If we love what we’re doing, they love it in return.”
The paintings are featured alongside other displays, including pumpkins, gourd and squash, as well as hay bail size displays made by local resident Deana Johnson, a teacher at Washington Elementary, and friends which include a Halloween tulip and a fish town Halloween among others. According to Eddie, they are “having a hoot.” Adding, “I think it’s kind of cool.”
Eddie believes supporting local is important, and it’s one practice that sets them apart, artistically. “I think there’s a niche there,” he said, adding, “I’m fascinated by it – where you create your own culture.”
Currently, the farm is busy harvesting crops, while also working on displays – a process that takes upwards of a month to prepare.
This year, as was the case in 2008, Eddie and his brother are concerned about the growing season and if they will have pumpkins ready for patrons. The terrible weather in May and June hurt the growing season as it did with all farmers in the area. “We’re biting our nails that we’re going to have things ready for Oct. 1,” he said.

Gordon Skagit Farms is located at 15598 McLean Road in Mount Vernon and open daily during the month of October from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Call (360) 424-0363 or visit www.gordonskagitfarms.com/

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