Crater Lake National Park, Oregon

As part of my continuing series over the last few weeks from our recent road trip to Seattle and back, this weeks post is of Crater Lake National Park. Located northwest of Klamath Falls in the south central portion of Oregon, it was formed 7,700 years ago when a violent eruption triggered the collapse of a tall peak. The collapsed caldera has become the deepest lake in the United States fed by rain and snow and one of the most pristine anywhere on the planet.

In all of our years going up and down the west coast to Seattle, we had never stopped at Crater Lake. I have seen it numerous times from the air flying back and forth, but seeing it up close and personal is an entirely different experience. One of the most recognizable features of the Lake is the island on the western side of the lake. Because of this feature, it makes it easy to spot even at 36,000 feet in the air.

Crater Lake 1

The first thing you notice about the lake is the deep blue color of the water. It looks fake even in person it so so blue.

Crater Lake 2

We drove around the entire lake and as you can see from this capture as we approach the island, it isn’t as small as one would believe, which gives you an idea just how large this lake is.

Crater Lake 3

The next capture (Crater Lake 4) was taken from the drive as it took us around in the upper right coastline of the above capture (Crater Lake 3).

Crater Lake 4

This next capture was a surprise as we continued the drive from Crater Lake 4 going left from that shot.

Crater Lake 5

Love the unique feature that nature created here. Looks like a small castle on an island. To give you a point of reference, the island itself is on the far right side of this capture.

There is so much to do in the Park and so much to see. This just gives you a flavor of the lake itself. Again, the surreal deep blue color of the lake boggles the mind every time you look at it no matter which side of the lake you are on.

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Hood River Valley, Oregon

In continuing from last weeks post from our recent road trip up to the Seattle area from Los Angeles, I wanted to share some captures from the Hood River Valley in Northern Oregon. We stopped here after visiting Crater Lake in Southern Oregon (pics from that coming soon). Hood River is a town located on the confluence of the Hood River and The Columbia River. Just south of the town is a stunningly beautiful agricultural valley. The valley is known for its tree fruit agriculture—including one of the world’s largest pear growing areas. There is a mapped out drive around the valley called the “Fruit Loop”. It lists a number of places to visit where the twenty-nine member stands offer you a variety of wines, fruits, vegetables, flowers, ciders, and food. We chose to stop at an apple orchard where we were able to pick our own fruit. Loved the experience as neither my wife or I have picked apples from an orchard since we were young. It also high-lighted an old country store where in respect to covid, goods were displayed outside in front of the historic building.

This weeks captures were taken along the fruit loop and as Mt Hood is a prominent backdrop in the valley, I couldn’t resist these shots with the fall color.

Hood River Valley Fruit Stand
Mt. Hood Oregon
Autumn Colors Hood River Valley
Mount Hood Close Up

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Marymere Falls in the Olympic National Park

My wife and I just got back to Los Angeles from a 2 week road trip back up to Seattle. For those of you that follow my blog, you will remember my post from mid September of the thick smoke in Seattle that we experienced when we were up there then. Yes, we turned around in a couple of weeks and returned this time via car. The early September trip was a last minute one to help on a family matter. This trip we had been planning all summer to take a few days going up, stopping at Crater Lake and Hood River Valley in Oregon. On our way back down we went through Oregon and cut over to the coast to drive down the extreme Northern California Coastline through the many redwoods that populate that geography. So for the next few weeks, I will be sharing some of my favorite captures from our trip.

I’m starting this week with two captures of Marymere Falls located in the Olympic National Park which is on the Olympic Peninsula in Washington State. This was an awesome day trip we did with our two daughters and their husbands that live in the Seattle area. We took one of the many ferries that connect Seattle to the surrounding islands and the peninsula. From the arriving ferry port, we still had another 1.5 hour drive to the park.

There is so much to see and do with the many trails, etc, but my favorite one for the day was the attached two captures of Marymere Falls. The trail is just a quick 1.7 mile hike and ends with this 90 foot waterfall. There are two viewing platforms at different elevations to choose from. This first capture is from the lower platform and the second one is from the upper platform.

Marymere Falls
Marymere Falls Bottom Half

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Candy Cane Roses

October is the time of year in Southern California where roses hit their seasonal stride with an incredible showing of blooms. I decided to feature three art prints that were inspired by one of my favorite roses, the Candy Cane Rose.

The first one is an abstract watercolor rendition of one of the blooms.

“One Candy Cane”

The second and third prints are from the same plant and on these I used a slightly more subtle abstract watercolor technique.

“Two Candy Canes”
“Candy Cane”

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And More Lighthouses…..

With last weeks picture of an abstract lighthouse, I thought it would be appropriate to go back to the lighthouse theme I did in August. I drew those lighthouses using an ink and watercolor technique. I have completed three more lighthouse drawings since those posts of Oregon Lighthouses, with these being in the state of Washington.

Mukilteo

The first one is my rendition of the Mukilteo Lighthouse on the east side of Possession Sound in Mukilteo, Washington. The lighthouse is an operational navigational aid built in the 1950’s north of Seattle and just south of Everett. The Mukilteo location also sits next to one of the ferry terminals serving auto and pedestrian commuters between the mainland and the numerous islands in the Pacific Northwest.

West Point

The second one is West Point Lighthouse which is located in Discovery Park (Seattle, Washington) It sits on the north part of the park on a piece of land that juts out into Puget Sound on the north end of Elliot Bay (Elliot Bay is the body of water that downtown Seattle fronts opening into the Puget Sound).

Admiralty Head

The third and final one in the series is Admiralty Head Lighthouse constructed to replace the original structure in 1903. The location of this lighthouse marks the north end of Admiralty Inlet which connects The Strait of San Juan de Fuca with the Puget Sound (for ocean voyage between the port of Seattle and the Pacific Ocean, you would sail out of Elliot Bay into the Puget Sound heading north towards Canada sailing through theAdmiralty inlet to connect to the Strait of San Juan de Fuca which separates the two countries and then westward out to the Pacific Ocean).

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Light of Love

I just wanted to post a reminder that now more than ever we need to approach the issues of the day with as much love in our hearts as we can muster. People are hurting and it’s up to all of us to reach out with all of the love and compassion we can muster. It may not always be received well, but we can’t quit trying.

Let His Light Shine Through You

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Mayan Ruins Sketched

In sticking with black and white art prints, this week I’m sharing black and white sketches. The subject matter is Mayan Ruins and this series of sketches is of the ruins at Chichen Itza, Mexico (Wikipedia). I should have been an archeologist as I love exploring the architecture of ruins from a variety of prior civilizations. In the case of Chichen Itza, I have visited this site a couple of times and find the structures fascinating. Black and white works well with this subject matter as it highlights the details of the architecture.

The central focal point of the city is the pyramid (Temple of Kukulcan). I have had the pleasure of hiking up to the top during my first visit and the second time we went down there, it had been closed off to people walking up the stairs.

The next two sketches are of the Observatory…..

These last two sketches are of the Temple of a Thousand Warriors.

The Rock, Lighthouse and a Rose in Black and White

For those of you that have been following me, this post won’t be a surprise. I periodically post different captures from my black and white photography gallery with the reasons I think they stand out more using the black and white motif.

We’ll start with “The Rock”. I love this shot and showing it this way allows the detail of the rock itself to be highlighted.  The scene is unique unto itself with this huge rock structure, but it also emphasizes the white surf of the waves coming ashore.

Next is “Admiralty Head Lighthouse 2” which is located north of Seattle, Washington. By showing this in black and white, the architectural details stand out as the center of focus. The subtle lines along the lower level of the first and second floor become more obvious along with the same type of lines along the top of the tower and second floor. The window framing actually pops because it contrasts with the white stucco of the building itself, as does the roof and top of the lighthouse itself.

Admiralty Head Lighthouse 2

“The Unfolding Of Petals” is a perfect example of detail that “pops” out with the absence of color. The color photograph of this rose is stunning and no getting away from the brilliance of the color. Having said that,  I did this in black and white because the amount of detail that pops with the petals is intense,  from the actual shaping of the petals to the veining that shows on each petal.

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Seattle Sunshine

I want to extend my thoughts and prayers to all of those impacted by the wild fires up and down the west coast. I think of those who have lost their homes and/or evacuated from approaching flames to the fire fighters who have bravely been battling these fires.

My wife and I left Los Angeles August 31st for two weeks in Seattle (two of our daughters and their husbands live up there). At that point in time Northern California was battling significant wild fires and the smoke from those fires had migrated to Southern California. As we took off and started the flight north, there was a layer of brown smoke all of the way up the coast to Oregon. From Oregon on up to Seattle, the skies were clear and we were thankful to get out of the smoke.

Starting with our second week in Seattle, Oregon was now battling a number of fires and so was eastern Washington. Mid-week, the winds changed and the huge plume of smoke that had been blown out to sea from California and Oregon came inland and created the pictures I have attached.  I took these with my cell phone by one of our daughters house because I was blown away with how weird the sun looked. It actually got worse as the week went on with no sun getting through.

We returned to Los Angeles Sunday September 13th. On that day going to the airport in Seattle, the smoke was so thick you couldn’t even see the downtown high-rises as we drove right by them on Interstate 5 (the freeway literally butts up to downtown). Taking off from the airport was like rising through a thick layer of clouds that had a brown tinge to them. On the 2.5 hour flight coming south over Washington, Oregon and Northern California, looking out the window at 35 thousand feet, there was nothing to see but the brown cloud below us. It boggles my mind that there would be a smoke plume of that size. Think about any flight you have had of that duration and think about if there was nothing but smoke below you for the entire flight.

Seattle Sunshine

Street Scene

The air was so brown, these shots almost look like sepia photography.

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Old Fashion Hay Wagon

From the bright colored abstract prints of last week to a very subtle look at a very old subject matter. I came across this hay wagon while doing a photoshoot of barns in the Amana Colonies area of Eastern Iowa. I almost drove by this, but caught it out of the corner of my eye at the last minute. I revisited the shoot recently and decided to take this hay wagon and create an art print of the hay wagon using a soft watercolor technique.

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