Sunset across the Olympics
Sunrise Across the Valley
Shine the light
Sculpture Park Sunset III
Another Day Signs Off
EVERYTHING ELSE || LIMITED EDITION PRINT
Sculpture Park Sunset II
Keep A Light On
SNOQUALMIE FALLS || LIMITED EDITION PRINT
It's good to revisit
Blue hour morning
Floating on Fire
First light on Mt. Si
34 SECONDS || LIMITED EDITION PRINT
BE THE RIVER || LIMITED EDITION PRINT
TWO POOLS || LIMITED EDITION PRINT
Calico Hills II
Sun rise on the ledge
Guardians of the Valley
Sunset at Sculpture Park
Little Mashel Falls
Alone on the mountain
Frozen on the Lake
Stop and smell the roses
So Close. So Far.
Sunset across the OlympicsPerhaps the best sunset I’ve ever been privileged to witness. From the Summit of Mt. Ellinor, just Mother Nature and I.
Mt. WashingtonThe last touch of light belonged to Mt. Washington
Sunrise Across the ValleySome you painstakingly plan, quadruple checking conditions, weeks ahead of time, tracking updates each day. Sunrise/sunset times, cloud cover (low/medium/high???), 3D maps complete with anticipated sunlight patterns to figure out exactly where the sun will hit IF the conditions are right, hiking trail conditions, hike times, and on and on.. .And then there are others, like this one, that you just walk up on after having had only the loosest of plans. Moral of the story?? I don't know…Life is good. Enjoy it all :)
The OlympicsL8948 | Sunset on the Olympics from on top of Mount Ellinor
Shine the lightThe amount of light that shines on you is the exact amount that should be shining on you at that moment. That's been a hard one for me to learn but I'm making progress. Instead of wishing that moment was different, instead of just trying to escape it, I've learned to sit in it, feel it, linger in it, and process it. It's hard, but things become clearer and I learn a little bit about myself each time. I like how the light was shining on these rocks at this time. It was perfect. Here's to you having a perfect Monday, which is to say, of course, the exact Monday you had.
Sculpture Park Sunset IIICheck out my story for an up to date view of what it's like in Seattle right now. Or - - if you're all too familiar with that and are looking for a break instead - - here you go: Seattle, last week before the snow. Regardless - Happy Monday! #gogetyours
Another Day Signs OffAmazing to think of all that happened on its stage. How many smiles, how many tears, how many lives come, and how many lives gone on to their next chapter. May you be present within all of it. R.I.P. Opa Jack. Thank you for all the love, laughter and joy you brought to those around you.
EVERYTHING ELSE || LIMITED EDITION PRINT[L2221] CLICK TO BUY It can be a challenge to keep those spirits high day after day and not succumb to the Monday blues (regardless of what day it is). At times, it can seem that the smallest things can swing my mood from one end of the spectrum to the other, and when that happens, I know it's time to reflect and try to understand what's really going on. Usually I find that I'm too externally focused, not centered on what's really most important to me: my presence with myself, my relationship with my wife and my kids. That's what's important. Everything else just…doesn't…matter.
Sculpture Park Sunset IIIt just kinda looks like these rocks have been through a lot, doesn't it? Some large slabs with cracks and sheers, smaller blocks staircased upon each other, water forcing whatever way it wants down their sides. And the rocks are beautiful. Beautiful as themselves, beautiful for giving life to the few plants trying their best to make a living amongst them, beautiful for accommodating and guiding that water as best as they can. Hats off to ya', rocks.
Keep A Light OnSun setting @ Discovery Park in Seattle, coloring all it touches. Keeping a light on to help others navigate. It's really easy to turn away, to write situations / people off, to not invest the energy and compassion to look deeper and see what's really at work. It can feel overwhelming to me to do so, and it's much more convenient to get on with my day, because hey - I got stuff to do. But I know that really just creates darkness, and I suffer in the end. Each time I do invest, when I look deeper and try to connect, I'm rewarded. The lighthouse is a good reminder to try and shine that light...onto others and onto myself.
SNOQUALMIE FALLS || LIMITED EDITION PRINT[L4882] CLICK TO BUY First and foremost: thank you to all of the veterans and their families. Living in this country I enjoy the freedoms they fought for, they died for, every day. Sitting with that for a bit provides me a lot of healthy perspective. . . Secondly, this is what happens during a non-photogenic sunrise at a beautiful location with a 43 minute exposure (not a typo).
Mount Index3:45 am - out of bed. 4:10 am - on the road (with coffee). 5:10 am - at the trail head. 7:15 am - 4 miles and 2k feet of elevation in the dark later - on location. 7:40 am - first composition worked out. 7:50 am - first glimpse of sun bathing the mountain tops. 7:51 am - first photo (not shown). 7:52 am - ruh-roh! need a new composition after not loving the first one after all. 8:05 am - this photo. 8:10 am - good light gone. 8:11 am - incredulous at having reception - call home to my lovely wife to wish her a good morning. 8:15 am - breakfast. protein bar. 8:20 am to 1pm - plenty of distractions on the way back down the mountain, some of which I'll hopefully show here soon.
It's good to revisitI had left this one behind in the archives until I stumbled across it again yesterday. It's not a great image, but I think it has some nice elements to it. More importantly, revisiting it allowed me to recall the process I went through and gain new perspective on what went well, what didn't, and what I'll do differently next time. That's something I've done more often over these last few years regarding my personal / every day interactions and situations, something I still strive to do more of. I always learn something when I do.
Blue hour morningHope you all had a great year and are poised for the next one! For me, it was full of learning, appreciation, love, challenges and triumphs. I am eternally grateful for every day I get to spend here and value each of them more as time goes on. Being present is that ultimate challenge for me, and I'm proud of my track record on that over this past year as it was marked with improvement, far from perfection, but improvement ;)
Floating on FireLooks like that mountain (Mt. Hood @ 11,249 ft) is floating on the sunlit clouds on a cold winter day. Is this one of those, "Things aren't always as they seem" or "Don't judge a book by its cover", or "You should know better" types of posts? Maybe. It may also just be a "I think that looks kinda' cool" type of post. Everyone gets to decide for themselves ;)
First light on Mt. Si[L0001] Magical moment catching this first light and its path on not just the peak, but the tree and the other rocks between them. I couldn’t imagine it any better and I feel humbled and lucky to have captured it. . I like the play between the size of the objects that the light touches. To me, it says no matter how small or big, there's enough for everyone and we don't have to compete to 'get ours'. A good lesson for life, love, generosity, joy…you name it.
34 SECONDS || LIMITED EDITION PRINT[L0567] CLICK TO BUY 1 of 3 in a series of long exposures in Mt. Rainier National Park
BE THE RIVER || LIMITED EDITION PRINT[L0587] CLICK TO BUY | Be the river…It's a lot smoother.
TWO POOLS || LIMITED EDITION PRINT[L0927] CLICK TO BUY | Third image in a set of 3 of long exposures in Mt. Rainier National Park.
Calico HillsI got to spend a few days in Las Vegas this past week, and took the opportunity to visit #redrockcanyon. Really amazing and unique landscapes, colors, and textures. This shot was the last one I got, just a few hours before flying home. The sun was setting on the Calico Hills, and the clouds were adding some nice texture. I lined up the composition, then put on the polariser and ND filters. When I looked back up from adding the filters - which took all of maybe 20 seconds - the light was gone. Done. Zip. Zilch. The clouds to the West had blocked the sun, the light was flat, and I was sure the sun would fully set prior to the clouds moving on. I thought I missed it. . Dismayed, I started to pack up, but stopped, 'What's another 5-10 minutes to wait it out and make sure?' Lo and behold, within 5 I saw the golden light color the tops of the hills once more, spreading slowly, bringing life to it all, for maybe another 60 seconds. Glorious. . To me, it was a confirmation of patience, a confirmation of not giving up, a confirmation of not jumping to conclusions, a confirmation of being in the moment and not skipping ahead, a confirmation of being. It meant a lot.
Calico Hills II(Dust off that old hat) It's Showtime!I make up that this is the forgotten one, the ridiculed one, the discarded stepchild. The least colorful of all of the surrounding mountains, destined to play second fiddle tucked behind its rich, lush, center-stage brethren for all of time. . . Except for now. Except for right in this moment where all eyes are on it as the sole recipient of the sinking sun. It is the star of the show, and it dusts off its hat, pulls those shoulders back and stands proud, acutely aware of the sudden rush of attention, embarrassed about it while at the same time thinking 'ya damn right!'. . . And people notice, and people notice it's deeper beauty, those features they hadn't bothered to acknowledge because they were too busy looking elsewhere. And people look at it differently now, even when the spotlight turns off, because they have seen it. . . Yeah, that's what I make up ;)… Have a great weekend, and keep those eyes open.
Rainbow MountainA little can do so much.As one who is rarely in it, it's easy for me to think of the desert as being one dimensional, to picture it as a vastness of uniformity, striking only in the singularity of what it has to offer to the eye. And then I see this and am rightly calibrated :) . What resonates most to me is how so little - this ground, this dirt, this by all measures harsh and poor soil - can host and give life to such beauty and diversity. The rock, the plants, the mountains. The white, the green, the orange, the red. All beautiful, all from one seemingly insignificant source. . And that reminds me that the smallest things can have a big impact. I think about that here in the context of helping others grow, flourish, and create their own beauty and pieces of magic. And how sometimes it can take so seemingly little to turn doubt and insecurity into confidence, action and progress. A smile here, a word of encouragement there, a simple question to ponder. . If you're still here - thanks for listening to my ramblings ;) - and perhaps you'll find value in the reminder I give myself to not let those seemingly insignificant opportunities pass by. They can do so much.
Sun rise on the ledge"You miss 100% of the shots you don't take" - Wayne Gretzky, by Michael Scott ;) This shot is the result of getting up at 5am, driving a short 40 minutes, navigating the lake and surrounding area for the first time in the dark with a headlamp while being blasted by wind non-stop as temps were below freezing. Even properly bundled up with some slick @vallerret gloves, anytime fingers were exposed they went numb quickly, and due to the sand whipping around, my graduated ND filter came home with a couple of scratches, too…never mind the lovely new tripod and ball head getting their first battle wounds afte toppling over not once but twice (without the camera on it, whew!) as I was (somewhat poorly) trying to manage the situation. In the end, there's nothing special in the above. There's nothing that's really unique to me. I'm proud of myself for making it happen, for not hitting snooze on the alarm, and I'm proud of the result, but anyone can do it. You just gotta' get out there and take the shot. Hope you took your shot today.
Turn aroundOn my way to Mt. Adams I pulled over after seeing a beautiful site that resulted in the phot I posted 3 days ago. Then I turned around to see this. It's always good to turn around and check out what you might be missing.
Guardians of the ValleyA cloudy day on a mid-September day in Mt. Rainier National Park, specifically near the top of the Van Trump trail. I felt the line of trees, specifically the tall middle one, were on guard protecting the valley beyond from all. The sharpness of the trees, along with the drama in the sky had me hooked.
LayersCrisp and cool it was for this beautiful scene in British Columbia. I love the layers of dark and light as you travel back into the photo, and how the light row of trees mirror the mountain. And layers, today, remind me that there isn't one thing, one layer, to….anything. Reflecting on joy and happiness in that context, my layers are self care (starting with the basics like am I getting enough sleep? How am I eating? Exercise?), connection - with myself by virtue of being present and in tune with my state of mind and my feelings, and connection with those around me - in particular my ever awesome partner in crime @l.mihm, and our amazing kids. Morning coffee time, evening board games, snowboarding, walks…just being around each other doing nothing - they all work, they're all powerful, they all connect me. And my 3rd layer on this German chocolate cake of joy (mmmm….chocolate ), is learning and doing…photography fits that bill pretty well :) . . It was a great week refueling on all of those things up in Canadia (that's just what we call it ;) ). It feels good to be back and getting' this Monday, too.
UFOIt was going to be an epic sunset and I had the location scouted out and composition framed with plenty of time to go until sunset. The clouds were high/medium and light, it was a beautiful winter evening in the mountains. All I had to do was wait. It was going to be great….until it wasn't :) As you can see, the army of dark clouds rushed in and stole the show, but I got that one cloud lit up nicely before it, too, was gone. Did the outcome make the journey any less enjoyable for me? Not in the least. As I responded to someone today elsewhere, I've heard that 'Life is a journey', but through my experiences, I've learned and come to believe that 'The journey is life'. Monday was great. It went according to plan. And if it hadn't, I like to think it still would've been great. How was your Monday?
Sunset at Sculpture ParkThe mountain. It's not screaming, it's not cowering. It's not basking in the light, it's comfortable in the shadows, not hiding in them. From sun to shade, day to night, it's neither smaller nor larger. Its presence is strong regardless. It's consistent. It's a mountain ;)
Seattle WinterTo me, this is proof that I should always #justgoshoot given the opportunity. With the ever present encouragement of my awesome wife @l.mihm, I set out on an afternoon walk without a clear plan regarding what I was going to shoot (a rarity for me). The city of Seattle was just starting recovery from Snowpocalypse, and as I was walking along the lake those icicles caught my eye. I wondered if there was a shot there, contemplated just moving along, but finally decided to hop down, stand nearly in the lake, and watch the waves crash amongst the beautiful colors that surrounded them. The ice sheath for each and every single, tiny branch (especially the magenta ones!) is just not something I recall seeing before. I'm glad I went out, I'm glad I saw this, I'm glad I stopped, I'm glad I clicked the shutter. Happy Wednesday, all.
Little Mashel Falls[L7718] Lots of themes jump to mind on this one, but what stands out the most at this moment for me is all about what you don't see. What you don't see is the 125 foot waterfall drop that terminates immediately to the left of this frame, the edge of which is catching the two boudlers in the back. What you do see is probably not what most would describe to you upon their return from this great location in the PNW which can mean a couple of things: I totally missed the boat and I don't know what I'm doing, or I consciously decided to miss that boat, focused on what caught MY eye, focused on what I wanted to focus on, and perhaps….still don't know what I'm doing :) I'll lean to some variation of the second one as that's my choice to make..you make yours ;)
Snoqualmie Back at it! Time to shake off the fog, take a step forward and see what we can do. Hope you got yours and that you didn't have to climb too steep a mountain to get those juices flowing again. And if you did - it sure is a nice view no matter what.
Alone on the mountainCamping at 9,300 feet, with the mountain all to myself. Magical. Cold....but magical :)
Frozen on the LakeI was busy setting up a composition, trying to isolate the two large tree trunks with a simple background. As I was starting to get annoyed that this one damn root from a different trunk was in the way, I finally saw the details...the icicles, and the highlighting the setting sun was adding to them. I moved my tripod by about 10 feet, turned 45 degrees, and voila. A good reminder for me to be open, receptive and curious about the details.
Stop and smell the rosesI like to reflect on my photos. Sometimes it's very proactive (I have the plan before), sometimes it's reactive (I draw meaning out of the situation / composition / capture afterwards). This is one of the latter ones, and I'm reminded that it's not about the destination, but it's the journey (cliché's exist for a reason!), and that you should always take the opportunities when they present themselves. I was on my way to Mt. Adams for hiking, camping and photography when I passed this. How many times would I have just continued on and said, 'Yeah, nice, but I'm on my way to something better/grander…' How many times do I make similar decisions on any number of matters? Too many. Every time I DO stop instead I'm rewarded. Not by the result, but by the satisfaction that I've stopped to smell the roses (boom!). Here's to you stoppin' to smell your Monday.
MinimalistSide view of (most of) the 2nd longest floating bridge in the world (the 1st is just up the road).
Rise aboveThe outlook is better. Taken from 9.3k feet up on Mt. Adams, the view at sunrise across to Mt. Hood with Mt. Rainier in the background. Peaceful and majestic, without a worry about the darkness below. A good reminder to rise above whenever possible, and not to worry about anything that's going on 'beneath' you.
So Close. So Far.[L7842] his was taken at a small stream where everything but the top of that big rock (and the end of the tiny twig just left & up from it) was under water. I was struck by how this submerged log created these two very different worlds, two worlds so close - only inches apart! - but seemingly so far in terms of sharing any common characteristics. The green, the black and general chaos on the left, the smooth Mercury like flow of the water over the log, the more monotone and uncluttered blue/white water on the right. So different left to right. But the rock. The rock reminds that it's a rock on that side just like the smaller ones are on the other. And, of course, the water is water on the left, it's water on the right. It just may look a little different. What do I make out of all of this? It's often easy to miss the obvious which unites us, which can unite us, which could unite us, that which we could use as a bridge to connect.
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