One of the refreshing things about my trip to Austin, Texas was all the green and creeks and lakes and ponds to wander around. Don't get me wrong, I do love my desert with its ever changing light and grand vistas that involuntarily expand your chest to the deepest recesses of your soul. But every now and again - it is so nice to wander among lush green things with running water - lots of it.
I particularly like this photo because it captured the essence of what shared my path along the Barton Springs Creek trail on a most wonderful morning walk....
Back. From several days in Austin, Texas - visiting a good friend my daughter and I met a few years ago while on a trip to Australia. I'm in the midst of unpacking and a multitude of other to-dos on my list so this will be a brief glimpse into my days there.
Austin is the capital of Texas - surrounded by rolling green hills, trees, trees, trees and lots of creeks and rivers. It is also home to UT - University of Texas @Austin. Quite a sight for these small town desert eyes. But what impressed me the most - besides their incredible music venue that seems to run 24/7 - are the colors of old amidst the impending new. Everywhere I looked, there was some intriguing, cozy spot to eat, hear music, or both at the same time. And everyone is warm, open, and friendly. Particularly interesting, to me, was the use of trailers as eateries. I hear the older, funkier buildings are quickly being torn down and replaced with high rise towers. Now I wish I had spent more time photographing the iconic images....
Here is just a bit for now. More coming...
You can't experience the south without having some good ol' fashioned fried chicken.
When it's made right, it's not as greasy as you might think. Soul food.
<-------- This building is a gallery for neon signs now. And yes, that orange is that orange in real life. Still.
Well, isn't That Fantastic?!
What? Isn't that what everyone uses WTF for?
(Incidently, that neon sign is inside the building with the orange side doors posted above.) -------------------------------->
I was happy to have recovered some files I thought were lost forever with our theft episode. Here are a few photographs from a series I did on 'rust'. I find the patina on ancient things rather fascinating...so much texture and nuances of color. If these things could tell stories....
Two of these shots were taken in Joshua Tree National Park at the Desert Queen Ranch. The other is from my other favorite place to hang - the idyllic village of Cambria along the Central Coast of California.
Just a quickie today. This is a yucca bloom. A Mojave yucca to be exact. Did you know there are over 40 species of yuccas all over the world? The Mojave yucca, indigenous to my desert region, have these curly fibers that peel off of the spear-like leaf. The Cahuilla, Serrano, and Chemehuevi peoples of this area used those fibers in baskets, clothing, roping, etc. The fibers are stiff and sharp. They must be soaked and repeatedly worked over in order to soften enough for weaving and braiding. If I can find my project bag of yucca fibers braided into roping, I'll show you some plant-to-product samples - from gathering to stripping fibers to processing to braiding. It was a LOT of work for just those few strands.
For now, here is a photo taken along my walking trail of a Mojave yucca (aka Yucca schidigera or Spanish dagger) in full bloom.
I'm a happy camper. Got my workflow tools up and running. The studio space is getting a facelift. Tufts of dog hair have been sucked up with the vacuum - again. Now, if only I can get a little respect for uninterrupted 'Me' time. I can get pretty grumpy.....
Things that make me smile: (or at least distract me from things that don't......)
This guy didn't flinch, no matter how close I got with the camera or how much noise I made. There was a fisherman on the bank below. No doubt it was holding out for some freebie morsels.
On the other side of the causeway was a pack of ferral cats (are they called packs?). They lived in the rocks near the water. Water? Cats? Aren't they supposed to not like water so much? People left them dishes of water and food as well as blankets. The cats looked really healthy and didn't mind me around - probably hoping for some tidbits as well. This shot only shows about half of them. Since I didn't have any offerings for them, they weren't so interested in sticking around....
Just like a cat, isn't it?
I am still alive. Can't believe myself it's been 2 months since my last post. I'll keep the reason simple: technical difficulties. iPads are useful tools for many things but they do not replace the capabilities and ease of a "real" computer. Therefore, photo posting is a bit awkward....
These two months have been an excellent purging and sorting time. It is spring after all...a time for renewal, resurrection, hope, letting go, making room, rebirth. And I feel like I've been through all of those things in this transitional season of the year.
It's all good.
I really appreciate those of you who quietly wrote and inquired. I missed you, too.
In a few days, I will have more photos and stories of recent adventures and discoveries as well as some cool stuff on the horizon. This spring, in my desert, the Joshua trees and yuccas are blooming, blooming, blooming! I managed to capture a few keeper shots. Mostly I just gawked and admired. They are magnificent in their spring attire. I am posting one quick shot taken last month. This particular bloom, taken in its very early stages, had fully bloomed and is now seed pods.