Friday, December 31, 2010

Close to Home

It seems like a lot of people use the Christmas and New Year’s holiday weeks to Go Someplace Cool. I was talking to a friend this morning and she told me her boyfriend has gone to Baja, and some other folks I know are off cross country skiing in a high valley I really love in Central Washington.

Leah and I also talked about taking some kind of a trip, but it seems like we’ve both been hyper-busy lately, so we decided to stay home. The weather is clear and chilly out, and sticking close the wood stove seemed like a good plan.

I did go for a walk this morning, however, taking my cameras and exploring places I could visit on foot. I took pictures of wintry frost and ice on some Scotch Broom plants -- not as exotic as Baja, but I guess it’ll do.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Seeing Plants

Mom grew up in a world of plants. Her father and uncle owned a greenhouse in Ohio, and while other kids her age were jumping rope or riding bikes, my Mom was accompanying my grandfather on flower delivery trips to weddings, funerals and flower shops. When other kids could barely do one-plus-one arithmetic, my Mom was keeping the books for the family business.

It was entirely to be expected, then, that when Mom visited here this week for the Christmas holiday, she and I made a trip to a place we've enjoyed when Mom has been here in the past, the Volunteer Park Conservatory in Seattle. In this wet and drippy time of year in the Pacific Northwest, the fern greenhouse in particular caught our eyes. One plant, Calathea lancifolia (Rattlesnake plant) had foliage that looked like it has been stenciled with the patterns of a stereotypical leaf design -- as if the plant was mocking itself and its brethren, in a self-deprecating kind of way.

Another day, as I was walking around the property surrounding my house, I photographed yet another fern (I've since learned that it is our native fern, Polystichum munitum) growing near the strikingly red bark of a madrona tree. Since green and red are, I guess, the unofficial colors of the Christmas holiday, the picture seems like a fitting image to share today.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Christmas Chicken

Several days ago I had it on my To-Do list to go into the photo archives on my computer and choose a landscape picture for this, my holiday blog post. Stereo-typically, I was thinking the image would be a Winter Wonderland kind of scene: A beautiful, snow-covered mountain, or a towering evergreen, also blanketed in snow.

It was that day too that our hen, Goldie, hiked from her home in our barn, waddling and toddling her way up to our house. She stood near our front door, posing, and it was such a comical moment that I pulled out my pocket camera and obliged the preening chicken.

These are the kinds of “events” we appreciate about our lives these days...small things, but we wouldn’t trade these moments for anything. The days are good, and we feel very lucky.

Happy Holidays!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Classic View

Mom is here for the holidays and we played tourist in Seattle last night, driving around the city, looking at holiday lights. The image you see here is the classic view of the skyline from Queen Anne hill (as is fitting here in the Evergreen State, Seattle decorates the top of the Space Needle with a tree-shape of lights for the season.) So that I could get as much detail as possible in the scene, I actually shot two, side-by-side, horizontal panoramic exposures, then pieced them together on the computer...easy to do with today’s software.

Click on the image to see it at a more impressive size.

Sometime it'd be fun to do a similar picture, except I'd shoot maybe eight side-by-side vertical frames and piece them together. The image quality would be amazing...My only concern then would be that the Photo Police could arrest me and charge me with Overuse of Megapixels.

Now...please pardon my brevity, but Yours Truly must go. My Tour Guide duties continue.

Sunday, December 19, 2010


My computer desktop looks like a crazy person is in charge.

There must be fifty image files, photographs I shot yesterday as workout pictures, visual exercises, play.

There are pictures of our goat, Pumpkin. And pictures of a fern I saw on our property. And pictures of a pomegranate that Leah put in the salad we had for dinner last night.

The pictures of the goat and the fern, well maybe I’ll post those another time, maybe I won’t. I kind of follow my gut with this journal... and you, dear reader, and I...well, we're at the mercy of that unruly brat, my inner child.

Heck, even just looking at the pomegranate pictures, I’m not at all sure which variation-on-a-theme I like best, so I’ll post three: The image as I shot it (I had about 10 seconds to shoot, as the cook was breathing down my neck, antsy to make her salad...) Then a version where I made the background black and white; and another one, cropped.

Please! Someone come and take control of this computer! There’s an inner child acting out.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Pot-Luck Dinner

Whenever Leah and I get together with our friends in the Seattle-area Tibetan/American community, I feel -- though it seems that neither of these things can be possible -- that the children have become even cuter than they were when we last saw them, and the adults even more welcoming of us.

I’m getting the impression that our Tibetan friends love an excuse to get together and socialize, but even more than that they enjoy sharing good food and celebrating their culture. Last weekend our friends invited Leah and me to a potluck dinner celebrating the 21st anniversary of the Dalai Lama’s winning of the Nobel Peace Prize. We’d barely walked in the door for the event when cups of sweet tea and plates of snacks were placed in our hands, and the welcoming hugs and good-to-see-you greetings began.

Leah had baked Western-style holiday cookies, and the Tibetan women accepted those with smiles and warmth, placing the cookies on a long table already filled with Tibetan, Indian, and other Asian dishes. Because I’m not much of a cook, my contribution to the evening, as usual, was to make photographs for the community’s web site.

The children, dressed in traditional, celebratory costumes, sang and danced. Everyone ate a lot, and we all enjoyed being together.

Now we need to come up with an excuse for the next get-together.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Worthy of the Moment

A week or two ago I was out working in the barn, noticed our sheep Smokey standing in the critter door, and what I saw caused the PICTURE!!! light to flash on in my head. Smokey was chewing his cud and looked quite contented, the barn wall near him had interesting shapes, and there was beautiful light. I pulled out my pocket camera, made a number of photographs of the moment, and felt good about the images I’d gotten.

Later, at my computer, I realized, sadly, that my normally reliable little camera had missed focus and Smokey was a blur. And though I know that there’s always tomorrow and other worthy photographs will present themselves, I was bummed that I’d missed that picture. I did like what I’d seen, and I wanted an image to honor what I thought was a fairly special, lots-of-unique-elements-coming-together moment.

Diary pictures are like that: They’re about preserving a memory. Sure, a moment is still in my heart, picture or no. But there's no denying that a photograph helps me remember.

But this story has a happy ending. Yesterday I was out near the barn again. I realized Smokey was standing, maybe not in the same spot as before, but at least near it. And he was contentedly burping and chewing. The light was good. I had a camera over my shoulder, a real, pro-level camera. I entered the barn, fearing that there was no way Smokey would continue to stand there.
Our goat Pumpkin, ever the friendly (though also distracting) girl, chewed on my ear and breathed goat breath in my face as I picked a spot where I could shoot. Smokey did move a bit...exactly to where he’d stood for my earlier, missed-attempt.


Finally, a picture worthy of the experience!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

An App for That

Leah and I went to see the new Harry Potter movie one evening last week at a small theater in our equally small town. The movie is two-and-a-half hours long so the theater owner announced that he wouldn’t prolong his patrons’ seat time by showing previews of coming films.

Many people had arrived early to get a seat for the film, since it was only recently released and I guess many of us reasoned that there would be a big crowd. Folks were still trickling in as those of us who already had seats fidgeted and waited the few minutes before the movie would begin.

And then a funny thing happened. A man seated in front of me got out his cell phone and began playing a video game. A woman behind us used her phone to make a call, and the people to our left and right pulled out their phones too. I was a bit taken-aback that, even in these days when everyone has phones and many of us are hooked on playing with them, here were folks, about to sit and view over two hours of cinematic escapism, using their phones to fill (escape from?) the maybe two minutes of “free time.”

Geez we human beings are something.


The day after the movie, Leah and I were on a ferry crossing Puget Sound, headed to Seattle for an evening out with friends. The ferry trip takes about 30 minutes and I decided to take advantage of the time and call my Mom. As we chatted -- I love my mother dearly and my mind was on our conversation, not on whatever was going on around me -- I happened to glance out the window of the ferry. An incredible sunset was going on and, preoccupied as I was with the call, I nevertheless knew I had a picture to take. Mom understood when I explained about the sunset and asked if I could call her back.

Click on the picture to see it at a size that does justice to the scene. Meanwhile, I’m gonna go invent a cell phone app that helps us know when we should be using the phone...and when we should maybe put it away.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Drive-by Beauty

There’s a waterfall I often photograph when I'm on my way out to the Washington coast. The waterfall isn’t terribly large and it’s right beside a busy road. Cars woosh past the waterfall and I suspect many drivers don’t even see it.

I've stopped at the spot dozens of times, however. There’s a wide shoulder beside the road a short walk away from the falls. I park my car, shoulder my camera bag and tripod, and go visit my little friend, the waterfall.

It’s really quite something, that drippy, verdant wall. Huge gobs of moss cling to the rocky hillside, and ferns grow like crazy there.

It’s kind of too bad that the road is so close to the falls, and that, if they see the falls at all, most people only look at it from a car window. It’s a place that can’t be appreciated at 50 miles an hour.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

House Guests

We had a fair number of house guests this summer, friends and family who came here and stayed at our place for a day, a week, or two. Leah and I honestly enjoy sharing our home with those we’re close to, so we were fine with the revolving door of visitors, the constantly changing cast of characters who were sharing meals with us by day and sleeping in our guest room by night.

Having visitors who want to come hang out with you is pretty much part of the deal when you live in a place as wonderful as the Pacific Northwest. This is a vacation destination, what with the recreational possibilities to be had in our nearby mountains and at the Pacific Ocean beaches...and then there is also the lure of all there is to do in the uber-cool city of Seattle.

The funny thing is, however, that when folks visit Leah and me, they often don’t actually make it to the mountains or the ocean, or even to Seattle, though the city is less than an hour from our door. They hang out in our yard, napping on the hammock, or they sit under a tree reading. They spend time in the pasture, watching -- I’m absolutely not joking here -- our goat Pumpkin chew her cud.

The honest truth is that there’s not much “cool” to do at my house. We don’t have a big-screen TV, or video games, and thankfully, that seems fine with our guests. Watching Pumpkin chew her cud is what passes for Big Entertainment here.

And that’s the way we -- and our visitors -- like it.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Seeing Art

When I was a freshman at Ohio State and was taking one of my first photography classes -- the time was the hippie-dippy early 70’s, the class was in the School of Art, and weirdness was very cool, as will be obvious in a moment -- I remember the day one of my fellow students, a beautiful young hippie chick (a descriptive term she would have been more than fine with) brought to class a print she had made. It was a black and white image, archivally processed, matted, and signed.

It was Art. And it was a picture of a penis.

Yes, the hippie chick had turned in (for academic credit, mind you) a really close-up, every-detail-in-sharp-focus photograph of a penis. And even in those free-and-easy, antiestablishment days, in that anything-goes classroom, everyone in class (including the professor, a bearded, blue-jeaned, sandal-wearing type not much older than the students) was taken-aback.

“What are you trying to say with your photograph,?” the professor asked, hoping I suppose to, um, stimulate artistic dialog.

“Oh, I dunno,” the young woman said, “I just kinda felt like being weird.” To which I’m sure we all replied: “Far Out.”


The above story came to mind this morning, as I guess I was feeling weird about an image I had made, a photograph not normally my style. I was out for a walk down a country lane near our house and I came upon a scene: A yoga ball, for some reason left by someone near an abandoned, fallen-down building. I took the picture, thinking that later I'd do some funky stuff to the image color saturation in Photoshop...and, you know what? I kind of like the picture. (There are even a couple of patches of melting snow, remnants from our recent storm...melting snow that's normally kind of dead-snow-ugly, but I like it that those are in the scene too.) The image is not my typical thing, but I like it anyway.

Far out.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Regional Fib

The wind is howling outside, the snow is blowing sideways, the lights are flickering, and there’s no telling how long my electricity-dependent Internet connection will last. I had better post these pictures before my link with the cyber-world gets cut.

Snow: It’s Big News in Seattle. When we moved here from Ohio 30 years ago, people we first met admitted that winters here are too rainy, dark, and depressing, but the locals added, a bit defensively, that at least it doesn’t snow very often. In fact I remember being told that the city only had a couple of snow plows.

I’m embarrassed to say that Leah and I bought into the regional weather fib. “It never snows here,” is what I think we told our family members back in Ohio, where winter can be brutal. We didn’t say “rarely,” or “seldom,” when talking about instances of snowfall, though that would been at least a tiny bit more accurate. We said “never.”

And so -- because Mother Nature is nothing if not a woman with a sense of wry humor -- our family lore is full of stories, instance upon instance, when Ohio relatives have traveled here to visit us, only to experience a record-setting Puget Sound snowstorm. My Mom came out last Christmas and it snowed a ton; this week Leah’s parents were here and the pictures I’m posting today are my chagrined chronicle of what we saw as we looked out our windows.

That first day, the snow fell gently and silently and everything was so very peaceful. Day number two brought nasty wind, ice on the roadways, trees falling on power lines. Friends of ours have been without power for two days now and they've had quite enough of life lived in down coats, down sleeping bags, and "winter camping."

Okay, I guess it does snow here.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Seeing Prayers

My Tibetan friends gathered last weekend at their monastery in Seattle to offer prayers for long life and good health for the Dalai Lama. I was there to honor the event, and to make photographs for my ongoing personal project on Tibetans in Seattle.

There was seriousness and solemnity in the air as the monk, Khenpo Jampa, began chanting prayers in Tibetan and the 75 or so people in attendance joined in. I worked quietly and respectfully from a distant corner of the room, my camera and a long lens on a tripod. Though my camera was set to “silent” mode, I nevertheless took only a limited number of photographs...and then only when I was sure the moment was right. I did not want to intrude.

Tibetan families are close-knit, and parents often bring their little ones to prayers. A young boy (I’m sure he was not old enough to read) followed the example set by adults and held up a prayer book, but, in the end, it was a sucker that got his full attention.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Pleasant Distractions

I go to our kitchen sink, thinking I’ll get water to make tea. I reach for the faucet but see something out of the corner of my eye.

There’s Light! Or Composition! The Christmas cactus is blooming and looks Amazing, or sun is shining through some wild bird feathers that Leah picked up outside and placed on the kitchen window sill.

A photograph has presented itself.

Making tea will have to wait till later.

Right now I have pictures to take.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Coming Together

I’ve written here before about my growing involvement with the Seattle area Tibetan community, but something that should have been obvious dawned on me only recently: By no means is every individual in that “community” Tibetan.

It’s funny how circumstances bring human beings together.

Several years ago, two friends of mine who live in Seattle, one man an American, the other born in Tibet, got to talking. The American asked the Tibetan what he remembered of his boyhood in his home village. As the Tibetan reminisced, he eventually admitted that one day he’d like to go back to the village to visit his sister who still lives there, but that the airfare was very expensive. The American had always wanted to see Tibet, and so he offered to pay the airfare so that the two, together, could go to that village high on the Tibetan plateau, above 15,000 feet.

They went, and some of the pictures of what they experienced on their trip are posted here.

Though sanitation and hot water are “realities” we take for granted in the developed world, the village my friends visited does without. The two travelers decided to do what they could to bring clean, hot water to the village in that high, cold land.

And so, back in Seattle, my two friends organized a fundraiser. Last weekend members of the “Tibetan community” here came together for the benefit of a village half a world away. My two friends sold prints of their Tibetan pictures (I helped with some Photoshop work on the pictures, and also donated images of my own for sale.) Other people donated food, while those with musical talents contributed entertainment.

We shared an evening of singing and dancing, all in the hope that one community, ours, can help another.

Yes, it’s funny how circumstances bring human beings together.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Life with Pumpkin

It was only a couple of weeks ago that I shot the picture you see above, but already, with the coming of autumn, the picture is beginning to feel like ancient history. Many of the leaves have fallen from the trees, and the goat, Pumpkin, has subsequently ambled along and gobbled them up, keeping her pasture neat and tidy, her tummy full.

Pumpkin loves to eat leaves, though I must add that there isn’t much that a goat won’t eat. Yesterday I was in our chicken house, emptying a 40-pound paper sack of corn into the feeder bin. Walking through Pumpkin’s part of our barn a few minutes later with the empty bag under my arm, the goat stole a mouthful of the brown paper and then stood munching her sack snack, a look of great contentment on her goofy, lovable face.

Saturday, November 6, 2010


Leah, our friend Jimi, and I have gotten into sending what we call “email postcards” to one-another. We take pictures of everyday happenings in our lives (Leah and Jimi tend to use the cameras in their phones to do these pictures, while I use a conventional digital camera) and then we email the resulting images to one-another.

Yesterday I took some friends for a walk on a beach in Port Townsend and I shot the photograph you see above. Earlier this week Leah was on a ferry headed to work in Seattle and she made the email postcard photo you see below of water drops on the ferry window at sunrise.

"It's a nice day here. Love to you," we'll write. The email postcards are a way we three good buds can stay in close contact and let one-another know that we’re thinking about them.

Kinda fun.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Driving Miss Daisy

Because she’s experienced vision problems in the past few years and my mother can no longer drive her car, a visit back home for me now means I do my “Driving Miss Daisy” thing, taking Mom to some of the places she enjoys but can no longer visit on her own.

I was in Ohio last week and my agenda for the trip was to rake leaves in Mom’s yard and do other fall/pre-winter home maintenance jobs, but Mom had other plans in mind. She’d allow me to rake for an hour or so, then she’d stand in front of me in the yard and say: “I don’t want you to work all the time you’re here. Let’s go someplace fun.”

So, as we nearly always do when I’m back home, we got in the car and drove to Holmes County, Ohio’s “Amish Country.” We poked around in a store that caters to the Amish -- the store is full of candles, oil lamps, wood stoves, and other non-electrical items the Amish use -- and we had lunch at our usual spot, a little country diner that serves big, working-person plates of food for small, middle-America prices (check total for two lunches: $5.)

Another day we visited Oberlin College’s Conservatory of Music, one of the schools where Mom studied. I took photographs of amazing fall colors outside the Conservatory building, and, as students strolled by, I joked with Mom that I could remember a time when I was in high school and Oberlin students seemed mature, sophisticated, and artist-fringe-intellectual to me. All the students I saw last week, however, looked so very young... my joke’s unstated punch line being that either I’ve gotten much older and my perceptions have changed, or Oberlin College now has a student body comprised of 13-year-olds.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Frightful Art

One of the things I enjoy most about writing these blog posts is that, as a photographer, words are not my first language. I’m a visual guy, and if I have any communicative fluency at all, it’s through imagery, not the written word.

Yes, people who read my blog posts sometimes tell me they think I write well. But the truth is that putting words together so that they blend in a pleasing manner is enjoyable for me because I’m a glutton for punishment and I seem to relish doing things that are difficult. Heck, I’ve climbed Mt. Rainier eight times and I’ve ridden the annual Seattle-to-Portland bike epic more years than I can count. Thus my credentials as a masochist and a fellow who loves a challenge are well-established. And writing, for me, is certainly a challenge.

None of the above really has anything to do with the photo I’m posting today of fall colors in Port Townsend, except that I'm always thinking about the creative process that goes into the making of many kinds of art, and often that means I look in awe at the work done by writers. As an avid reader, I can't help but admire the courage it must take for a real writer to look at a blank piece of paper or computer screen, pull words out of the imagination and assemble them in a way that gives life to a story, or brings literature into my brain like notes of sweet music.

To readers like me, the writing process is wonderfully, weirdly mysterious, even spooky. Maybe it's because Halloween is right around the corner, but today I'm thinking it's a good idea to look right in the face of things that scare us.
To writing, I say: "BOO!"

Tuesday, October 26, 2010


It was exactly three years ago that we trekked in Nepal and I made the photographs you see here.

Leah and I had walked and walked and walked in the Himalaya (more often than not up-up-up) for most of October, 2007. There were a number of things we’d hoped to see and experience on the trek -- the amazing and famous Buddhist festival, Mani Rimdu at the Tengboche Monastery, for one -- but, as a photographer and a once-upon-a-time mountain climber, I must admit that I had been trekking with my sights set on the highest peak on our planet. My research told me that there was a spot known as Kala Pattar (Black Peak) that would give me a great view of Mt. Everest. My plan was to be at Kala Pattar for sunset; if I was lucky, I’d be able to photograph Lady Everest bathed in the last, golden light of the day.

As you can see above, I was fortunate that October evening. Everest did look beautiful, but I must say it was her neighboring little sister, Nuptse, who stole my heart. Everest was a trifle too-clear, a bit too-perfect, while Nuptse flirted with beautiful, dramatic clouds.

Now, three years later, my heart still belongs to Nuptse.

I made a number of individual, left-to-right, panorama photographs that evening, and this week I decided it was time to piece them together. You can click on the panoramas to see them at a more impressive size.

Oh, I do miss Nepal.

Saturday, October 23, 2010


This felt like a good week to unplug.

Radio, TV, my email inbox, all are filled with political ads urging me to join this fight, ward off an attack by that group. I’m sick of it, this partisanship, this battling and negativism. I’m absolutely OD’d with each side portraying the other as evil or some kind of enemy.

So I said “Enough, already!” Leah and I had a friend coming to town for several days and her visit put us in Tour Guide mode. We took our guest on short day trips to show her the sights, which happily also got us away from all media. We literally walked away from our connected lives.

One of our outings found us on a ferry, crossing Puget Sound, and I photographed a young mother joyously playing with her baby (after taking the pictures I told the woman how to reach me for a free photo.) Another day we went to Bainbridge Island and took a long, chatty hike, wandering several miles with dry leaves crunching under our boots and, eventually, stopping near the shore at sunset as a kayaker paddled past. We waved and shouted greetings, and again I offered a gift photo.

Being out of touch, removed from the noise and divisiveness of the week, put us in touch with the people we happened to encounter.

There is a commonality and a community out there that isn’t getting much air time, but is worth seeking out.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Growin Up

Can you remember the time in your life when you dreamed about what you might be when you grew up?

Well, I turned 57 yesterday and, though that sounds like a lot of years that are behind me, I caught myself feeling like I’m still on my way toward growing up. I spent my birthday eating WAY too many chocolate chip cookies and understanding that, contrary to what I assumed when I was five years old, it’s turned out that “growing up” has been a journey that’s had no end point. The path just goes on, and on, and on.

Quite humbling, exciting, and downright amazing, really.

For many years, what I’ve wanted to be, of course, is a photographer. But each day I see new things and I grow a bit as a human being, so that the thing that is “me” one day, as well as the images that are “my work,” are an ever-changing work-in-progress.

I was in Seattle last week and I stopped at the REI store to look for a pair of shoes. Walking from the parking garage toward REI’s front door, I passed a small, decorative pond, and the late afternoon fall light was reflected in the water and I pulled the camera out of my pocket.

You just never know: You think you are going shopping for shoes when up pops an unexpected little surprise.

You just never know.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Waking Up

I admit that I think I am younger than I am. I mean, my 57th birthday will roll around next week but because I’m a hiker and a cyclist and a sometimes-runner, I feel fit and healthy and, yes, young.

I recently admitted to my mother-in-law, however, that I’ve been young for very long time.

Several days this week I had early-morning commitments that had my yawning, sleepy-eyed, soon-to-be-a-year-older self out of bed, dressed, and driving through nearby small towns and headed toward Seattle as dawn broke. I realized that my cameras and I have been watching places wake up for more than 30 years.

In my newspaper days in Ohio, I’d work on picture stories about small towns and I often felt I'd get my best sense of the community by being there early, watching it wake up. I’d be at Suzy-Q’s Breakfast Bar or the Sit-n-Sip or the Chatterbox, and the working men would come wandering in for a cup-a-joe and they’d gripe about the weather or the boss, and off in the corner of the restaurant a TV would be tuned to the Today Show but nobody would be watching because the men were sick of hearing about the Watergate tapes or Nixon’s problems with the Special Prosecutor.

(Oh my, I am going on, eh? Sounding, I suppose, like a man with a touch of Birthday Melancholy?)

Anyway... the mornings I witnessed this week were particularly beautiful, and I made time to stop and take landscape pictures before I continued on toward my commitments in the city.

If you click on the pictures, you can see them at a larger size.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010


I guess that over the years he’ll mature and perhaps by the time he’s an adult he’ll have learned to see things less imaginatively, but right now my nephew Killian is three years old and he believes some horses are blue.

Not all horses are blue, of course. Killian knows that even now. Just some horses are blue...very special horses are blue.

Killian, his baby sister and mom and dad, live in Montana but came here for a visit several weeks ago, and that’s when Killian met the horse, Rusty, who is pastured near our place. Rusty is not a blue horse, but he does have blue eyes. Killian and Uncle Kurt made many visits to the pasture to give Rusty apples, and the big horse was noticeably gentle as he took the apples from the child’s hand.

Now Killian and his family are back home in Montana, and I’m told that Killian talks pretty much nonstop about horses, and about the very rare, blue horse he insists is out there, somewhere.

Here at my place -- and without a three-year-old to keep me company -- I wander down to Rusty’s pasture to give the horse an apple. I’m finding that if my visit is done in the evening (and my camera is set so that the color balance is a bit on the blue side,) Rusty seems, magically, to become blue.

Imagine: A Blue Horse. Right next door! How cool is that?

Saturday, October 9, 2010


I shot this photograph three days ago and I've been thinking ever since about what I might write about the picture.

I haven't come up with a single idea that works for me.

So: Either I am a writer utterly lacking in imagination, or a photographer who has managed to make an image that needs no words.

Or something...