Fine Art Painting, Seattle, WA

Madrona Love Book

My romance with Madrona trees began over twenty years ago when I moved from New York to Western Washington. In the Puget Sound region, the Madrona’s vibrant color is startling on grey days. The papery orange-red bark splits and peels into interesting shapes and patterns, revealing a yellowish-green layer beneath.

Utterly captivated, I began photographing them extensively. To my surprise, I discovered an abundance of hearts carved into the Madrona’s silky smooth skin – a couple’s symbolic declaration of love, inscribed like lovers’ tattoos. Many of the hearts captured in this book are immediately visible, others reveal themselves slowly…like falling in love.

Susan Derrick’s attraction to the sensuous beauty of Madrona trees, with their spectral hues and gorgeous textural variations, is the heart of this book. The Madrona heart carvings, fragments of past and present, are lost and found within the bark through the seasonal cycle of renewal.  Richly textured surfaces, marked by people and the transience of nature is a theme often explored in Susan’s work as a fine art painter. Her photographs of Madrona trees were initially a source of inspiration for her paintings, which then evolved into the photographic essay that became this book.

$27  plus tax and shipping

Hardcover 9″ x 6″

56 Full Color Pages

Perfect gift for the Nature Lover, Valentine’s Day, Wedding, Engagement, Anniversary, or just to say “I Love You”.

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$5 per book sale donated to SEATTLE ANGELS The Foster Care Community

Seattle Angels Facebook

Video Story - Susan Derrick Fine Art partnership with Seattle Angels

Seattle-area artist, Susan Derrick, partners with Seattle Angels, a non-profit that supports foster youth and the families that care for them. Susan Derrick created a photo essay book of Madrona Tree heart carvings found in the Pacific Northwest. A portion of profits from the sales of her book, “Madrona Love”, are donated to Seattle Angels. Thank you to Tinte Cellars and videographer Brad Johnson for creating this video promoting Seattle Angels. Seattle Angels’ mission is to assist foster children and their caretakers by offering consistent support through intentional giving, relationship building and mentorship.

Seattle Angels –

Tinte Cellars –

Click on image above to view video


“Susan Derrick’s photographs in “Madrona Love” are startling.  Initially I thought they were paintings.  Only later I understood that these richly colored pages contain completely unaltered photographs of what she saw as she walked among trees in the Puget Sound area.  Typical of an artist, Susan sees what the rest of us don’t—at least until they show it to us through their eyes.  This is a book difficult to casually peruse; every time I open it, there is something new to look at, and it’s hard to stop looking!  Susan Derrick’s photography is as stunning as her artwork.  Bravo!” -Lisa Kelly

“I absolutely love the photos!  The book will be treasured…. The photos in the book are incredible – with or without hearts!”  – Liela Nicholas

“This little book of untouched photographs is a wonderful treasure. The work of Susan Derrick is so creative and unique. I spent hours experiencing “Madrona Love.”  I discovered I shared a goal similar to the goal that  Susan started with, having photos of Madrona tree heart carvings, that could inspire her paintings. For me, the inspiration I got was from her words and photos.  Every one of her photos touched my heart and my brain, her treasures inspired me for a potential merging of aspects of some of my photos with added painting aspects, leaving room for what would emerge. Susan’s book gave me a source of both a Mentor’s message/process with what evolved: the “photographic essay.”   – Leona Eggert

“Beautiful imagery and design. Gifted to a newly wed couple, they loved it!” – Tari Gordon