Press "Enter" to skip to content

Category: Kalaloch

Picea…Seussis?

Kalaloch, Beach 3, March 2008

The salt spray on the coast has a magnificent bonsai effect on the sitka spruce. They seem to depart from their own growth lines, jointed along an axis of old torment- a storm or even a specific gale. Hiking down the beach is like a gallery walk of the century’s greatest storms. Entire forests staggered, beachlogs chewed in half, and exposed agates polished in the soft sand bluffs like terrazzo.

Often the more dramatic Dr Seuss-like forms are buried in a maze of understory, alder and competing spruce, making them difficult to isolate for the singular gestures they are. But it’s probably for the best; the Isolated Contorted Tree device is such a franchise of solitude and determination that it is difficult not to lapse into brute cliche, especially in steely oceanscapes. But it is hard to resist.

If the rain were whiskey

Kalaloch, Beach 4, March 2008

This was hard to set up for because it was absolutely raining buckets, and came at the end of a very long and difficult day. I looked, chuckled weakly and kept walking, came back, left and got halfway up the trail and came back again muttering. I was convinced I didn’t have the right focal length, was sure the lens would fog up immediately because of the rain, et, etc, excuse, excuse, was genuinely pissed to be forcing myself to take the shot when a nice dry truck, towels, a change of clothes and a thermos of hot tea awaited. Not to mention the 2 hour drive home.

I’m not sure I’ve succeeded, though today I really like it. The problem with moody images, the moods don’t always align. Suffice to say the mood of the print is a good match for the wet disheveled mood of the photographer at the time. I do like the clear sharp grasses in the center of the foggy surroundings, looks like I wiped a clear spot on my lens with a dirty mitten. And regardless of how I feel about it, I’m sure it’s better than no attempt at all.