Rosanne Olson will never forget the flood of 1969.
"Our house was under water for 40 days and 40 nights," said Olson, who was in her first year of college at Minot State University at the time. "It was very biblical."
Olson's parents later moved out of the Green Valley addition to a home on North Hill, but Olson, now a well-known photographer in Seattle, said this summer's catastrophic flood in Minot brought back lots of memories.
She was Minot this summer visiting her parents during this flood's beginnings and later returned to see the aftermath, to see beautiful homes left twisted, debris piled on street corners and friends trying to pick up the pieces of their lives.
Olson responded to the disaster as a photographer does, by documenting the horrors with her camera. She has posted a video of still images of the flood aftermath in Minot on YouTube to raise awareness and support for flood recovery. Olson said she forwarded the video link to 500 of her online friends and some of them said they would donate to charities like the Salvation Army and Red Cross. She hopes other people will be able to use the video to show what is actually happening in Minot, especially with the clean-up effort that has not been documented as much as the actual flood.
Images are online at (http://bit.ly/rjHj93) and can also be found by typing "River Rising in Minot" into a search engine online.
Olson also write the songs used for the video called "Beautiful Memories" and "River Rising."
"I wrote it on the airplane on the way back to Seattle," she said. "I was so deeply moved by the whole experience of being here, documenting the aftermath of the flood that I felt that I had to write the song. They both come out of a place of my own experience with the 1969 flood as well as seeing what happened in 2011."
Olson will be honored as one of the inductees at the Minot State University Academic Hall of Fame Banquet at 7 p.m. Sunday in the Audubon Room of the MSU Student Center. She will also deliver a free lecture at 7 p.m. Monday on "The Creative Life" in the Aleshire Theater, MSU, as a part of the Northwest Art Center Lecture Series.
Olson will chronicle her work as a photographer, artist, and author, sharing insights into the creative process and methods to nurture it and keep it flourishing over a lifetime. An informal reception and book signing will follow the lecture.
Olson received her bachelor's degree from Minot State in 1972 and master's in journalism from University of Oregon in 1981. She began her photographic career at The Register-Guard in Eugene, Ore., then moved to Seattle, where she founded Rosanne Olson Photography. Over the past 25 years she has collaborated with designers and art directors around the country. She currently lives in Seattle with her husband, Ted McMahon.