Tegan Owens

When I think of adventure + talent, one gal comes to mind. Tegan Owens. Originally from Cochrane Alberta, this BC-planted photographer captures movement and adventure in unexpected ways – it makes you want to get outside and LIVE!! 

Her impressive list of clients include British Columbia Magazine, Adventure Kayaker, Men’s Fitness Magazine and many others!

Louis Bissonnette flying off of Blue Fungus on East Boulder Creek

“For me paddling is often less about the river and more about the people you get to adventure with.”
I’ve been checking out her photography online and following her on social media since summer 2016, and finally decided to reach out – I asked if she’d do an interview with me – she said yes! <happy dance>

When I read on her website, “…she spends most of her time living out a truck with her ginger dog and a camera in search of adventure.” I knew this was someone I wanted to know more about! <grin>

Photo by David Prothero

This girl is a peacemaker, smile-maker and an extraordinary human being – gold all the way through! Here’s my humble interview with Tegan:

11 Questions w/Leanne Campbell:

When you were a little girl, what did you dream of becoming? Was it anything like the life you have now?

I had big plans for myself. I was going to be a cancan dancer. Or something really smart. Turns out, I can’t dance and math makes me sweaty and uncomfortable so I settled for art school.

Of all the places you’ve travelled to, which location is the one that stands out in your mind and you can’t wait to go back?!

New Zealand is probably one of my favourite places. Although it’s less about the location and more about the people you’re with. I could be anywhere and as long as there are some rad people, it’s going to be great.

Your ginger companion… tell us more about this magnificent creature + what your dog means to you!

He’s just about the best dog anyone could ask for. He’s a bit needy but that just makes me feel more loved, so it’s okay. He’s a great adventure companion, he loves mountain biking, skiing, hiking, swimming and napping. I feel incredibly guilty if I don’t do at least of of these things with him daily.

If you could change anything about the world – OK, let’s narrow it down to Canada – what would it be, and why?

This is kind of general but it would be great if we did more to protect the wild places. Rather than developing, clear cutting, mining, and damning, we should protecting and preserving the forests, mountains, rivers, oceans, and all those special, wild places in Canada.

If your friends were to describe you in 3 words, what would they be?

Amatory, corpulent and redolent. I asked a friend this one.*

Adventure is built-in with you I imagine. What was your first paddling experience like and where was it?

My parents took us on a ton of canoe trips when I was young, but first whitewater experience was on Vancouver Island. I was attending the Canadian Outdoor Leadership program and far more into mountains and climbing at the time. David Prothero and Laurel Archer taught the whitewater portion. They are the best instructors anyone could ask for. Even though it was a tupperwear party every time we got in our boats, I learned a ton from them. I still get the chance to paddle with Dave now and then too. I really try to impress him with all my sick new skills. I think it’s working.

Who inspires you? Pick one person – I know that’s tough to just pick one – and tell us about him or her.

My Dad. He’s great. He works harder than anyone I know. He discourages me from getting a ‘real’ job, he’s always telling me to get after it and to do the things that make me happy. Plus he makes me pancakes and laughs at my lame jokes. If that’s not love I don’t know what is.

What is your favourite vessel to paddle in? And favourite gear, etc.

Anything with a good warranty. Har har har. I’ve been paddling a Dagger Mamba for a few years now. A Kokatat Drysuit is just about a year ’round necessity in BC, Werner paddles are pretty dope, Sweet helmets have saved my dome numerous times and have an excellent warranty. Just about anything Western Canoe and Kayak sell. They’ve done the research into the best gear with the best warranties.

What do you love most about living in BC, Canada?

The amount of activities you can do on any given day. Last week I went paddling, mountain biking, skiing and climbing. Where else can you do that?

What are two of your favourite local businesses? And why do you love them?

Western Canoe and Kayak! They’re great. They’re the BEST with warranties and hooking me up with gear that will last. I tend to be a bit hard on equipment, so having a store that is willing to go above and beyond what is expected is pretty key. Also, Tim Hortons. Free wifi and a mean breakfast.

What is a question you’ve never been asked, that you’d liked to be asked? And what is your answer?

Do you know all the words to “Gangster Paradise”?

Yes. Yes I do.

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*Well, I had to look up amatorycorpulent and redolent. Three words I’ve never used before, ev-er. I don’t even know you, but I’m sure these words describe you much better: Phenomenal, loyal and witty! <grin>

Tegan’s unquenchable zest for life is contagious and inspiring!! She certainly makes my BRILLIANT GIRL list with flying colours!!