Fed up with scraping by as artists, this couple made a leap that most people only fantasize about: they left city life behind to build their floating dream house in the middle of the lush Canadian wilderness.
It’s called Freedom Cove, their manmade island in Clayoquot Sound off the coast of Vancouver Island in British Columbia. Creators Catherine King and Wayne Adams have called it home for more than two decades.
A recent short documentary by Great Big Story shows the contented couple, their two dogs and their unique living arrangements. Freedom Cove has multiple greenhouses, a mini lighthouse, dance floor, art gallery, workshop and their living quarters. In front of their couch, there’s a hole in the floor that Adams can fish through.
In the video, Adams refers to the struggle to support yourself through an art practice.
“Subsistence living was our only opportunity to have anything as artists,” Adams says. “We could never buy real estate, so we had to make our own.”
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The couple put together the entire structure ― which is tied to shore ― without power tools. They began building it on land in 1991, using trees felled by a storm for lumber, and pulled their house into the water the next winter, Adams told HuffPost in an interview last year. From the looks of the original building, they’ve made a lot of additions in the last 24 years.
“I’ve been building tree forts since I was 7,” Adams says in the new video. “I said, well, Dad, I’m putting the tree fort in the ocean.”
They take the idea of sustainable living to the extreme, keeping off the grid, growing or catching their food and traveling by canoe.
“I can’t imagine living any other way,” said King. “I feel completely fulfilled.”