Row River/Brice Creek

“happier than a dog at a BBQ for the blind” 

Christopher Moore

That pretty much sums up my feelings about my time along the Row River and Brice Creek this morning.  It was perfect for photographing streams – overcast with a bit of rain resulting in soft morning light – long exposures and wet feet.

Brice Creek is a tributary to the Row River – east of Cottage Grove and easy to find. Had the place pretty much to myself.  There is lots of access to the river combined with plenty of safe pull-outs along the road for parking.  Also right now the wild dogwood is in bloom punctuating the green of the conifers and deciduous trees along the road and the river.  Loved the soft green of the new leaves and I made a vow to come back in the autumn – the color season.

These three images are all from Brice Creek.  The first is a panorama of a large cascade about mid-way along my trip.  (Be sure to click on the individual images for a larger view.

The next image is a closeup section of that cascade.

The last image is of a tributary to the main stream.

Some of you may find images such as these boring but they make me happy so I am not going to apologize for them and will probably keep shooting them.

As always comments are more than welcome.

 

 

 

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Black and White on Metal

This is the first time I can remember a company selecting some of my Black and White images along with some color ones for use in their remodeling efforts.  The image display above is in an upstairs reception area at Vista Counseling here in Eugene.  Huge thanks go our to Kirsten Shende at Art Counselor, Inc. and interior designer Beverley Stonecypher in making all this happen.

The metal prints were done locally at Central Blueprint and framed by Kirsten.  I am very happy with how they look and the reaction of the staff is certainly positive.

 

A Fine Evening

I just read an interview with Art Wolfe in on-Landscape emagazine in which he was asked about return visits to places he had shot in the past.  Mostly they were referring to his almost yearly trips to South Georgia Island.  He said that for him the challenge was to find ways to shoot familiar scenes in different ways.  I sort of agree with that statement but not entirely.  Return visits for me can be like going back to sit with an old friend who changes from year to year but basically presents the same level of self to the world.  Such has been my yearly visits to the West Eugene wetlands when the Camas Lily is in full bloom and painting the fields with purple.

The best time, in my humble opinion, to photograph those fields are with sunset light and a colorful sky.  Those conditions happen some evenings but one must keep a close eye on the weather report and the timing of sunset.  Last night was a good evening – not the best I have had out there but one of the top 10 for sure.

Had the place to myself – love that quiet introspection that can happen at times like that when you are focused on the images you are trying to capture and the noise of the world does not intrude.

The two images below are a bit of time sequence – the first being as the sun began to touch the horizon and the second a wider view of the wetlands when the last light filled the scene.

T’was a lovely evening and I came away refreshed.  Be sure to click on the images to get a larger view and I welcome your comments.

Rainy monring

It seems that lately April is self identifying as January and day after day of rather cool and wet weather has followed one after the other.  Sometimes weather like that can produce nice photo opportunities and some days it tends to keep one indoors.  Today I found myself indoors.  Cup of coffee, the music from the Peer Gynt ballet on the stereo and doing a bit of house cleaning – perhaps that will help bring on real Spring.

I have this basket on one of my bookcases that I purchased a number of years ago – just liked the hand woven rustic nature of it.  The pear tree in my back yard is in bloom so I just concocted a still life – the basket with a branch of the blooming pear tree.  This is a 5 shot stacked image and I did tone it a bit.  Kept me entertained this morning and I have a great book in the works right now for the afternoon.   Hoping for sunshine tomorrow which will prompt an evening trip to the West Eugene wetlands to photograph the Camas lily.

Comments, as usual are always welcome.

 

 

Magical Places

Over the past couple of months I have been fortunate to visit two magical art and ecology institutions in Oregon.  In February I stopped for a return visit to PLAYA at Summer Lake (http://playasummerlake.org/) in the heart of Central Oregon at the edge of the Great Sandy Desert.  Today I stopped at the Sitka Center for Art and Ecology (www.sitkacenter.org)  located on the Central Oregon Coast just north of Lincoln City.  Two very different ecosystems  that share a magic that can best be described only by being there – peace infusion.

I have heard about the Sitka Center from friends here in Eugene who have conducted workshops over there and one who just returned from a 3 month residency.  I have been wanting to head that way for a some time – not sure what kept me from going.  Today was the day – windy and rainy – iconic Oregon Coast weather.  Along the way I stopped at Devil’s Punchbowl between Newport and Lincoln City near Otter Rock.  I had hoped for surf large enough to spout up thru the bowl for a dramatic image but the surf was just not big enough to get that to happen.  So consider this a scouting trip and I will be hawking the websites for a day when the surf comes round.  Still it is always great to be on the Oregon Coast.

The above image is just an overview of the area.  The next image is of the punch bowl.  Would love to see the surf come pounding thru that opening and erupting in the bowl.  Perhaps next time.

I drove on up to the Sitka Center and got a tour from a very gracious young woman named Kimberly.  Great location, studio space, quiet and creatively spacious.  On the way out I stopped to photograph a small stream that crossed the access road. The skunk cabbage is just coming into bloom – love the way they light up the green field.

I think the next trip up there calls for an overnight stay – evening and morning light.  Thanks for looking.

 

Foggy morning

Recovering from a substantial storm over the weekend the clearing sky brought on fog this morning in the Valley.  Always brings opportunities for interesting images – at least I think so.

There is a stand of mature deciduous trees out by the new Symantec campus that I have shot in before – last autumn with colorful leaves on what I think are Horse Chestnuts.  It is a close drive and with the right conditions can make for a lovely image.  The fog filled the spaces and set off the stark nature of the trees and conversion to Black and White sure seemed appropriate.

I am sure I will be back at a later time as conditions and growth change throughout the year.  Comments are welcome and click on the image for a larger view on you monitor.  Thanks for looking

Hult Lake

I stopped for a short visit at Walt O’Brien’s studio the other day and there were some very nice images on the walls taken at a lake I had never heard of.  I asked Walt about the location and it turned out it was relatively close to Eugene – in the Coast Range.  I followed Hwy. 36 west – stopped at the Low Pass store for directions – pretty easy and accurate and drove on to the cutoff for the map dot of Horton – at least I think I went thru Horton – hard to tell.  At Horton  (not a Who in sight!) the road splits and I took the right fork and in a few miles came to Hult Lake which I found out is also called Horton Pond and is basically a reservoir.

This was a bit of scouting trip for future photo opportunities but I luckily found the lake shrouded in fog.  I shot my way along the shore and found some places that I think will be great come the autumn color.  The image below was taken after about an hour of shooting and was as the morning sun was just beginning to burn off the fog coating the lake.   If you click on the image to get a larger view I think it is better.  I welcome your comments here or on FB.

The Borderland

This is a set of wide angle shots forming a panorama from near the top of the Pueblo Mountains along Highway 140 east of the town of Adel.  I think it was close to 8,000 feet in elevation – certainly was cold and windy – both in teens.  Love the big open west.

Be sure to click on the image for a larger view.

More Winter

Wednesday morning found me in Burns with about 3 inches of fresh dry snow and temps in the low 20’s.  It was so easy to drive in those conditions with the exception of the clouds of snow dust raised by the big rigs as they blasted down Highway 20 towards Bend.  I stopped a number of times – put up a few images on FB that reminded me of Mika’s new work – she is always an inspiration.

I stopped in Sisters for breakfast and then joined the caravan headed west.  When I got to the Camp Sherman interchange I explored a little looking for a stand of the beautiful Ponderosa Pines in that area and hoping they would be cloaked in snow.  Sure enough it turned into what I think was an easy task.  This image seems to open a path into the snowy woods especially if you click on it to get a larger view.

Over the pass in another long caravan of cars, SUV’s and big rigs but things moved well and ODOT did a good job of maintaining them.

I have shot reflections on Trailbridge reservoir in the past in Spring, Summer and Autumn but not Winter.  They are always so different but this one is really different and is close to my favorite.

Nice to be home and I look forward to hearing your thoughts on these images and the ones from the whole trip.  Still mite find some more so be warned.

A Winter Excursion

(If you are receiving this on FB I hope you can take the time to go over and view the whole post.  Petroglyph image!!)

From the time I crossed over Willamette Pass on Monday morning to this Thursday morning in Eugene I did not experience temperatures above freezing.  Those conditions made for wonderful photographic opportunities as I made my way east and south and I hope this post conveys the beauty of winter and the cold.

First day goal was Lakeview, OR with stops along the way especially a quick one at PLAYA at Summer Lake (www.playasummerlake.org).  Met the new director, Ellen Waterston and just got to experience once again the overwhelming sense of solitude and serenity that pervades that facility.  This place is wonderful no matter the time of year but for me winter was magic – perhaps because it was my first time over there in this season.

The landscape along the Fremont Highway past Fort Rock in winter is a minimalist photographers dream.  It is so open and bare with rows of leafless trees punctuating the land.  Made it seem even more enchanting.

PLAYA  at Summer Lake is about 80 miles from the turnoff of Hwy. 97 south of LaPine and as I drove along I kept seeing these small streams – mostly frozen and rimmed and patterned with fresh snow.  Finally stopped at two or three of them and I did  manage to get one nice image.  Actually there are some others waiting their turn for processing.

I was looking for Native American petroglyphs and did manage to find some the next day — keep reading.

I had never been to Lakeview and found it to be like so many small rather isolated towns in the interior west – a bit run down in spots but overall nice people who were very welcoming.  The weather prediction for the evening ranged from 9 to -1.  I went to the local Les Schwab tire store and had my antifreeze checked.  Good to go.

It was 10 the next morning and following a nice breakfast at a local cafe I headed into the mountains – more of a discovery type trip as I had never traversed the Warner Mountains or northern Nevada and the Pueblo Mountains.  There are many places along the route east to Adel that offered so many shots.  A rather – at least for this country – large stream was at the margin of freezing over in the 6 degree temperatures and the remaining pools were just catching the morning light.

Friends had told me of a location east of Adel along Geaser Reservoir where there were petroglyphs.  I found them – what a treat.  It looks like lovely spring or summer weather — NOT – I was totally bundled up and lasted only 20 minutes before retreating to the warmth of the car.

Over the top, into Nevada and on to Denio turned north and headed for Andrews near the Alvord Desert.  Stopped for a short visit with John Simpkins and got meet Ella – his new standard poodle – still a puppy and full of energy but what a beauty.  I made a number of images of Steens Mountain that I hope will work in Black and White but will take come concentrated time to process.  I did stop on the Alvord – there are some nice tiles that have developed.  Best I have seen.

I will stop here and hope to put up another post tomorrow about the remainder of this excursion.  Thanks for looking.  As always click for a larger view of any image and comments are more than welcome.