Upcoming Art Opening at Boulder Digital Arts on Friday, July 8, 2016!

Pink Over the Flatirons. Boulder, Colorado, 2015
Pink Over the Flatirons. Boulder, Colorado, 2015 (An example of one of my pieces you will see as a 30″ x 20″ print.)

 

Come on out and visit! We can talk art, photography, censureship, 14ers, megapixels and f-stops, printing, or whatever you have a hankering to discuss (even Trump!).

There will be wine, cheese, and light refreshments.

Here are the details…

When: , Friday, July 8, 2016, 5-7p.m.

WhereBoulder Digital Arts (BDA), 1600 Range Street, Boulder, CO 80304 (northeast corner of Range and Arapahoe, one block east of Commerce St.). The exhibit spans the two main office complexes as well as three separate classrooms.

Who: Five artists have work in this exhibit…Thomas Walsh (landscapes, portraits, travel, and more; also the curator of the venue), Deb Cochrane (Australian based in Colorado; landscapes), Kirk Fry (nature, landscapes), María Rosa Fusté (photo-illustration, portraits, nature), and Daniel Joder (I have confined myself to local landscapes for this one–but they are all printed large, 30″ x 20″ up to 40″ x 27″!).

A big thanks to Bruce Borowsky (Co-founder/Owner of BDA) and Danice Crawford (BDA Manager) for this wonderful opportunity to show off our art. And special thanks to Thomas Walsh for his efforts in coordinating and curating this event!

POSTSCRIPT: A wonderful time was had by all (naturally)! A dozen images of the evening can be seen at THIS Facebook link. Scroll down to July 12th or so. Thanks, Danice!

Who is “SMILE”?

Smile's Dog. Boulder, Colorado, 2016
Smile’s Dog. Boulder, Colorado, 2016

 

You will find his or her art scattered all around Boulder, tucked away in unexpected corners and on abandoned urban canvases. The detail is exceptional… and it certainly makes you smile!

Does anyone know who this person is?

A Google search didn’t reveal much. The best I could find was The Awesome Foundation website which gives a short summary of Smile’s philosophy and motivation–and it links to a gallery of his/her work on Instagram.

UPDATE: It looks like the artist might be in attendance at this First Friday exhibition: First Friday at MADELIFE, July 1, 2016, 2000 21st Street, Boulder, Colorado 80302.

A Visit to the Skate Park

It is always a bit uncomfortable–but a good thing–to challenge yourself with completely different subject matter…like the amazingly agile skaters and bikers at the local park. We were out there today with the kids from our twice-monthly photography class.

My images are certainly not the kind you’ll find in the current, “raging and sick”, skate mags, but they definitely have the stamp of my personal style upon them.

Given the harsh sunlight, my idea was to work a bit with the shadows. Shadows. My eye likes the shadows.

See what you think…

 

Flying Shadow. Boulder, Colorado, 2016
Biker Shadow. Boulder, Colorado, 2016

 

End of the Run. Boulder, Colorado, 2016
End of the Run. Boulder, Colorado, 2016

 

Shadow Flight. Boulder, Colorado, 2016
Shadow Flight Down. Boulder, Colorado, 2016

 

The skater in the rest of the photographs is Ventus Koza Kisari, a guy with some amazing moves and getting results on the competition circuit:

Topping Out. Boulder, Colorado, 2016
Topping Out. Boulder, Colorado, 2016

 

Photo Shoot. Boulder, Colorado, 2016
The Photo Shoot. Boulder, Colorado, 2016

 

That’s photographer Dana Bove getting up close as Ventus does his thing. I really like how the shadow worked out on this one as Ventus gets some air on the rebound:

Aerial Shadowplay. Boulder, Colorado, 2016
Aerial Shadowplay for the Paparazzi. Boulder, Colorado, 2016

14er Report #32: Redcloud and Sunshine (Very Late Spring/Summer, Northeast Ridge/Traverse)

Moonrise, and Redcloud Peak Shadow. Redcloud Peak, Colorado, 2016
Moonrise, and Shadow of Redcloud Peak. From Redcloud Peak, Colorado, 2016
“Climb if you will, but remember that courage and strength are nought without prudence, and that a momentary negligence may destroy the happiness of a lifetime. Do nothing in haste; look well to each step; and from the beginning think what may be the end.”
Edward Whymper, Scrambles Amongst the Alps

 

“…a momentary negligence…look well to each step…” Yep, that was it. Not paying attention. Complacency. Luckily, it wasn’t near the scale of accident that Ed Whymper suffered on the slopes of the Matterhorn. Still, it could easily have been much worse.

But, more on that later.

For this first 14er trip of the season, I thought the Redcloud-Sunshine combo down south in the San Juan Mountains would be just the ticket. The standard route is not particularly difficult, not too torturously long, and you get two for a bit more than the price of one. It sounded like a nice motivational way to get started after nary a big Colorado mountain ascent since last fall.

It turned out to be quite the adventure, with some spectacular sunset and sunrise photo ops from my overnight solo bivvy above 14,000 feet, and even an unusually eventful return to Boulder after the hike…along with the little “incident” alluded to in the first paragraph, of course.

 

Here is the full report, along with 38 images to help you plan your own trip into the sensational San Juans…

Click here for the report and images!

What Is The Proper Color For Flowers?

The Red Flower. Boulder, Colorado, 2016
The Red Flower. Boulder, Colorado, 2016

 

Flowers Are Red by Harry Chapin

The little boy went first day of school
He got some crayons and started to draw
He put colors all over the paper
For colors was what he saw
And the teacher said.. What you doin’ young man
I’m paintin’ flowers he said
She said… It’s not the time for art young man
And anyway flowers are green and red
There’s a time for everything young man
And a way it should be done
You’ve got to show concern for everyone else
For you’re not the only one

And she said…
Flowers are red young man
Green leaves are green
There’s no need to see flowers any other way
Than they way they always have been seen

But the little boy said…
There are so many colors in the rainbow
So many colors in the morning sun
So many colors in the flower and I see every one…

 

So…How do you see all the many flowers that surround us this colorful spring?

For a unique duet version of the complete song, try this exceptional (but grainy) video from 1978 featuring Harry Chapin with none other than a very young Chevy Chase:

Neo-Topographics at Flatiron Meadows (Erie, Colorado)

A few more images to consider for the portfolio

 

I loved the arc of the downed sales promo flags plastered as they were to the wet asphalt. The rain was heavy and I was holding an umbrella over the camera on the tripod. Still, after every shot I had to wipe the lens due to the blowing droplets. As always, the Neo-Topographic theme is “what was” and “what will be”:

Sales Flags at Flatiron Meadows. Erie, Colorado, 2016
Sales Flags at Flatiron Meadows. Erie, Colorado, 2016

 

I always thought it was interesting that we scrape away nature…then, once our houses are up, we rebuild nature (to our standards, naturally) in our yards. Here in Colorado, we add trees, bushes, flowers, grass. In the deserts around Tucson, Arizona, fairly lush desert flora is routinely bulldozed away only to be later replaced by a neater, more cultivated, version of what was there before. We always think we can do it better!

Line of Advance. Erie, Colorado, 2016
Line of Advance. Erie, Colorado, 2016

 

The machine at rest after a job well done:

Line of Advance, #2. Erie, Colorado, 2016
Line of Advance, #2. Erie, Colorado, 2016

 

Not too far from Flatiron Meadows, this was the landscape just north of Arapahoe Road on the northbound side of East County Line Road:

Prairie For Sale. Erie, Colorado, 2016
Prairie For Sale. Erie, Colorado, 2016

 

On the northwest quadrant near Arapahoe Road and East County Line, they are just getting started. The distant peak just above the dumpster (symbolism here?) and to the left of the house is Longs Peak, just visible through the approaching storm. These folks will have a nice view of the high mountains for, oh, maybe a few months–until all the lots are built out. Similarly, when we moved to Phoenix back in 1968 or so, we had a view of wide open desert for miles and you could count at least seven distinct horizons off into the distance to the north. How is it now, you ask? Well, you would have to move nearly seven horizons north, maybe out to Carefree or Fountain Hills, to have such a view today.

Storm on Quest Drive. Erie, Colorado, 2016
Storm on Quest Drive. Erie, Colorado, 2016

Thunderstorms and Thermals

Sailplane Tow. Boulder, Colorado, 2016
Sailplane Tow. Boulder, Colorado, 2016

 

Sailplanes definitely seek the latter and avoid the former!

Lately, they have been out and about, sniffing the sky with their variometers and altimeters for those Otis elevator, upward-bound, heat bubbles–at least until the afternoon cumulus over-development would send them swooshing for the safety of the hangar.

For the photographer, these warm days with fairly predictable afternoon thunderstorms often give way to some spectacular early evening light.

So, even though there might be lightning bolts splitting a wet, black sky at 5p.m., don’t despair! After all, sunset is much, much later this time of year. Instead, pack up the camera, and set out through the meteorological chaos for a likely landscape setting–maybe a pond or lake, or a viewpoint, a farm, a local park or landmark, or an open field with gnarly trees, whatever strikes your fancy. Then wait.

As Thor marches off to wreak havoc further east, or dissipates even, you could have some exceptional lighting with which to work. (Maybe even a double rainbow!!! Check the link for a hilarious one-minute video!)

Now all I have to do is listen to my own advice and get out there myself–I have missed a couple of great opportunities over the past few days!

Three Random Pet Peeves, #1

Crane on Coot Lake. Boulder County, Colorado, 2016
Longs Peak Peek and A Crane on Coot Lake. Boulder County, Colorado, 2016

 

Hmmm…Maybe I should start a collection of random pet peeves?

Well, here are three to kick off the series:

1 – Dog shit bags left by the trail. Folks around here hike with their dogs. No problem, I love dogs. I often stop and pet them. The vast majority of dogs are cool. But why, oh why, do some dog owners pick up the dog poop with a bag (so far, so good) but then leave the petite package sitting by the side of the trail to bake in the high altitude sun? I have to assume they think they will come back that same way and pack it out–but too often it is forgotten and so it just sits there, abandoned, contents gooey, goopy and broiling. Please, carry out your dog’s shit! (Or–great idea here–put a pack on your dog and have him/her carry it out themselves!)

2 – Fewer versus less. A sign by the checkout registers at the local King Soopers supermarket says, “15 Items or Less”. This is incorrect. It should say, “15 Items or Fewer”. Why? Well, here is the rule o’ thumb: when dealing with a fixed, singular, quantity of something, or something you think of as a singular contained unit, use “less”. When dealing with multiple items, or items understood to not be in a singular package, use “fewer”. Examples…

–My car uses fewer gallons of gasoline than yours. Or, my car uses less gasoline than yours.

–There were fewer people at the meeting this week.

–It costs less money…you spend fewer dollars.

–Beware apparent exceptions…I have less than $500. In this case the $500 is seen as a single unit. Though, if you were talking about the bills as multiple items (plural), you could say, “I have fewer than six 100 dollar bills”.

–I can help you at this register if you have fewer than 15 items!

–And so on.

3 – Air conditioning in stores and supermarkets in summer. We are approaching summertime and the mercury is climbing to new highs every day–so break out the jackets! Say what!? Doesn’t that sound a bit weird? It isn’t, really. Try walking in to the many, many stores, shops, supermarkets, offices, etc. in which the A/C is cranked down to Antarctic penguin levels. You walk in out of that fierce summer sun and you find you need to immediately put on a jacket before Happy Hypo T (hypothermia) steals your life and soul. It makes absolutely no sense when you consider that these same businesses are likely looking for ways to cut costs. It also makes no sense when you consider the fossil fuels that are burned to generate the electricity for that A/C. So, hey, why not turn up the thermostat a couple of degrees in summer!

Why do businesses do this? I have two theories…

First Theory: Cold A/C symbolizes the first world, modernity, and class. As in, “Yes, we have nice, cold, air conditioning–nothing but the best for our customers!”

Second Theory: As a general rule, the current crop of Americans are so highly blubber-endowed, they actually need that extra-cool A/C to avoid overheating–kind of like how arctic seals and walruses are treated at Sea World in San Antonio, Texas.

Anyone out there feel the same? Did I miss the mark on anything? What are your pet peeves, Jeeves?