SSA meets its prints

Michael Blanchard donates photographs for Vineyard Haven terminal.

Island photographer Michael Blanchard has loaned the SSA two large prints to beautify the Vineyard Haven terminal. - Rich Saltzberg

Anyone who has spent any time inside the Steamship Authority’s Vineyard Haven terminal knows it’s never going to be confused with any of the Vineyard’s art galleries.

But at the urging of terminal manager Leigh Cormier, Oak Bluffs photographer and gallery owner Michael Blanchard is helping to brighten the terminal’s appearance with two massive prints that were previously for sale at Coastal Supply Co., formerly known as Refabulous.

“Leigh had seen the prints [at the store],” Blanchard told The Times. “He said, ‘God, we could use one or two of these in the SSA terminal.”

The two prints include a 30-by-50 of Edgartown Light and a 40-by-60 of the Catboat Charters’ Tigris.

“What better use?” Blanchard said, noting he’ll be putting up a placard. “I could maybe get referrals, and cover up stains at the same time. It’s a win-win,” he said. “I want people to know they’re donated, not bequeathed,” he added with a laugh.

On his Facebook page, Blanchard joked that the donated prints come at a price for the SSA. “In exchange for the donated prints, and upon my death, the Steamship Authority has agreed to change their name to the Blanchard Regional Authority for Transportation, otherwise known as BRAT,” he joked. “The new marketing slogan is ‘Come to Martha’s Vineyard and ride with the BRAT.’ I think that is an appropriate way to remember me.”

Blanchard said Cormier also has plans to add a large American flag to the rafters of the slanted ceiling inside the terminal.

Cormier was not immediately available for comment. The SSA was busy ferrying holiday visitors to the Island.

Blanchard’s Facebook post is getting some great feedback from his fans, who appreciate the efforts. “Great way to spruce up the place and expand your recognition,” Adrienne Nys wrote.