Tuesday, June 22, 2010

The Monster

I must admit I've been back and forth on this one more than a few times. I liked it quite a lot initially, then began to feel that it was not really that interesting, now I am back to liking it again! I've said it before, but it normally takes me some months or even more to get "detached" from images to the point where I can really judge them impartially, like seeing someone else's work for the first time.  Some other photographers I've talked to say the same thing.
This shot definitely makes me think of some alien spider creature about to chop off my tripod legs for daring to take it's picture. In reality, it's the remnants of an ancient Bristlecone Pine, probably laying very still right here in this spot at 10,000 ft. elevation in California's White Mountains, for many hundreds if not thousands of years. Click the image for a larger view on this one.. the texture of the wood is amazing.
I wish the redwood decks on my house were this durable.. I am going to be spending most of the summer repairing and refinishing them:)

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Evening on the Lake

Some tufa formations along the shoreline of Mono Lake in the Eastern Sierras, just as the sun set behind the peaks off to the west. The eastern entrance to Yosemite is just over there past the lake.  These towers are actually mineral deposits that formed as springs bubbled up from underground when this spot was under water, not all that long ago.  A thirsty Los Angeles drained Owens Lake down river from here in it's quest for water earlier last century (if you've seen the classic "Chinatown", that movie is loosely based around the story) and Mono Lake dropped to a fraction of it's former size also.  Efforts are under way now to let it refill to something like it's original size.  A much-photographed location, but you have to have some time in the area or be very lucky to nail an exceptional shot in one visit. This one's o.k. but I hope to get back for another stab at it.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

A Geometric Puzzle

I finally decided to take a day off from working around the house and head out for a rare (lately) day shooting some new work. Joshua Tree N.P. is now only 80 miles or so from home (and the most photogenic location in my area), so we drove out there for a quick day trip.
This formation known as the Giant Marbles, is one of the most interesting among so many to be found here.. I had never managed to locate it on previous trips, but it was quite easy to find with some quick directions from a ranger at the visitor center. Molten magma that rose up under the earth eons ago, solidified, cracked and was then exposed when the softer soil eroded away, explains the geometric stacking effect. The soft light on the rocks is just a minute or so before the sun set behind a ridge, casting the whole scene into shadow and killing the color... glad I got the composition I wanted just at the right moment. For a sense of scale, the round "marble" balancing on the top is probably 5-6 ft. diameter.