For four days I accompanied my good friend on a road trip. She had just finished up an artist in residence position at the Mojave National Preserve and was looking for a friend to make the long haul back home to Seattle. I flew into Las Vegas, where she picked me up, and immediately whisked me off into the nearby desert. Here are some photos I took from our journey. For more, visit my Flickr album!
As I sit with a heating pad in my lap, a blanket over my shoulders, and listen to rain pour down all clickity-clackety on our roof, I stopped to visit this sequence of shots of a bubble artist we saw on the river front in Porto, Portugal in May 2015. Bubbles are so great in that they produce these beautiful shapes and a rainbow of colors that come from items you probably already have at home: water, dish soap, rope, sticks, and a bucket. They are simple creations that bring smiles to faces and a sense of wonder to the mind.
About the above image: The influence of painter Edward Hopper guided me to snap this as quickly as I could (This volunteer moved right after I took it). It reminded me of many of Hopper’s paintings and how they illustrate lonely and quiet postures, and long dramatic shadows. The portrait on the wall is Johnny Jones by Marti Corn.
The Outwin 2016: American Portraiture Today from the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery is on display at the Tacoma Art Museum. If you are in the Puget Sound area of Washington State, go and spend a couple of hours and treat yourself to a fine exhibit.
Candidly speaking, portraiture is not my strength when it comes to photography, but it doesn’t mean I don’t appreciate it. And perhaps I’ve only been asked to do portraiture in the sense that someone needs a headshot or holiday cards made, as opposed to a photo where I collaborate with a subject to tell a greater story, which is what this exhibit does so very well. With each portrait, I found myself asking “Who is this person?” before the next question, “What choices did this artist make when considering how to present their subject, and why?”.
In the car ride home I unraveled my thoughts on the collection, about what I felt made it successful. In the end, the portraits that were chosen transcended the usual technical excellence and mainstream/popular visual aesthetic. With each, I met a person through their gaze, through their hair, or through how they held their hands. With each person, I became curious, my empathy and wonder feelers turned on high. Unlike viewing portraits that were commissioned hundreds of years ago to flatter a person in a high position, these were not just pretty portraits; these were lives. They are lives that are examples of many others like them that exist in this time, now, experiencing things I could experience or can relate to, or at least try to understand. They are not about status, but human existence.
To pique your curiosity, I decided to crop these phone pics of some of the work I saw on purpose. Seeing them in person is just more powerful, and they are totally worthy of your personal visit.
I revisited and edited some photos I took at the Rodin Museum in Paris. The museum is a converted mansion that became the house for his work. It is a lovely, intimate space. Seeing the natural light fall on the sculptures in a house-like setting was pure joy. This is just a small selection from the photos I took. For more photos, visit my Flickr album.
The spontaneous nature of street photography can bring about unexpected moments of human connection. Sometimes my camera is not on the correct setting and it lags when I try to catch a candid moment. On this day, a stranger took advantage of the delay and flashed a friendly smile my way.
Our trip to Mexico City was filled with art and culture. When others go to the beach to forget and relax, we travel to discover and learn about subjects new and different from our own. While wandering the streets, a banner ad for the exhibit El arte de la indumentaria y la moda en Mexico, 1940-2015 caught our eye. So we popped in. Admission was free to explore this lovely building, where there were two floors filled with beautiful dresses. They were stunning, traditional, historical, daring, of-their-decade, and just fascinating to study. Students of fashion were walking around with sketch pads and cameras studying each piece. One student seemed to be photographing the same ones I was interested in. I remember him making a comment to me in Spanish that we seemed to like the same styles.
Fashion is not something I really keep up with at all, but I appreciate the art and skill designers have to manifest their visions. I enjoy exploring different areas of art and creativity. Areas I couldn’t do because it just isn’t my natural talent. It helps me stay curious and grow in the kinds of visions I can have for my work.
Some photos from my recent trip to San Diego this past weekend.
We’ll have to go back. Museums, all this awesome scenery, gardens, fountains. Acres of things to see and do.
San Diego Zoo
De Anza Cove Park at Mission Bay
The site of our family reunion. We were there at 6:00 a.m. to snag a spot for our all-day event. The marine layer hovers over San Diego till about maybe 9:30-10:00 and then the sun starts to peek through.
San Diego International Airport
View from the Town & Country “Resort”that we stayed in. Next time, I’ll find better accommodations that don’t have not-easy-to-see fees.
I was going to be solo for the holiday weekend, so a friend invited me last-minute on a group outing to Whistler, the site of the 2010 Winter Olympics, and a travel destination for many of my friends during the winter months. I’d never been enticed to make the drive up (it’s about 5-6 hours from Seattle). I’m not one who likes to wake at 5 a.m. to drive for hours then bundle up like the kid from A Christmas Story and then hurl myself down a treacherous mountain. I’m more of an island girl. That said, I had a wonderful time. What beautiful country! The Olympic Village was nestled just so and did not overwhelm the natural surroundings.
I just got back from a nine day trip to Mexico City. It was my first time there and I was excited to visit the museums, palaces, churches, and see art by notable Mexican Artists like Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera. Below are tiny segments I’ve played with in terms of color and gradation from murals by David Siqueiros. They were painted at Chapultepec Castle. I was most captivated by his brush strokes and the loose gestural movement of the lines and shading. As I was editing them, I was thinking of the the story behind the country and the people’s fight for independence.
The entire Castle was amazing to walk through. The artifacts left behind illustrated a lifestyle from another time. Traveling to countries (especially ones that were founded and developed hundreds of years before the United States) is like time traveling. It’s fun and exciting to think of life hundreds of years before yours and what it must have been like. Where would you stand? What would you do? How would you express yourself? I look forward to going through the many frames I took and sharing more thoughts and perspectives from when I was there. It’s definitely a city I want to go back to and visit.