Sunday, November 30, 2008

November 2008



Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving

Martin County, January 2008

Although a secular holiday, celebrated in the U.S. (and Canada), a day to take time to be sincerely thankful seems to me one that could not be more sacred. Here's wishing everyone near and far a day to be thankful.

"Live in each season as it passes; breath the air, drink the drink, taste the fruit."
Henry David Thoreau 1817-1862

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

The Tale of the Devil's Claw and the Cotton Boll

"The Tale of the Devil's Claw and the Cotton Boll"
Studio, February 2008

Another photo from the unpublished archive, one of my favorite studio photos.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Ladies and Gentlemen

"Ladies and Gentlemen"
Odessa, Texas

Thursday, November 20, 2008

An Imaginary Place in Reality

"An Imaginary Place in Reality"
McCamey, Texas
August 2008

As part of tidying up things for the remaining days of 2008, I will be posting a few of my favorite artsy-fartsy shots from this past year that didn't make it to the blog.

Am I the only weird one that admires vents on industrial rooftops? This surrealistic row of vent stacks was on top of a restaurant.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Before I Ate It

"Before I Ate It"

A simple photo for a simple mood.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Dressing for Fall

"Dressing for Fall"
Studio Photo

If I were invited to an Autumn Ball, I would like to wear a dress that looked like this leaf, another one of the studio photos taken last Sunday.

I can't believe I didn't get around to taking any pictures this week. Instead I started a decluttering project that will likely take me into the next year: clearing a rental shed, 10'X10', packed to the gills with boxes from my last move. My last move was ten years ago! Out of sight, out of mind, as they say.

I just know inside my pack-rat exterior there is a peaceful, zen-like existence that is chanting to get out. I envision an environment where a single, well-placed river rock could command a whole room.

What's your inner decor?

Monday, November 10, 2008

Saving Autumn 2008

"Saving Autumn 2008"
Studio triptych (click for larger view)
West Odessa, Texas

Sometimes all the stars align and your vision is manifested. This was one of those times.

Sunday, November 09, 2008


Virginia Creeper,
Time Machine Master Gardener's Garden,
Odessa, Texas

One day the opportunity will present itself that I may say "thank you" to some local master gardener that had a hand in building or maintaining the demonstration garden that I love so much.

Friday, November 07, 2008

Singing to the Sunset

"Singing to the Sunset"
Near Rankin, Texas

Thursday, November 06, 2008

The Lilliput World of Lichen

The Lilliput World of Lichen
(as of yet unidentified)
Near Rankin, Texas

It's like a whole 'nother world when you look at it closely. I love lichen and fungi, both a beautiful part of the cycle of life.

I remember once when I was a kid in Oklahoma I collected as many fungi as I could find for a Show and Tell day at school. I must have found a dozen different specimens of all colors and sizes. The only problem was that I collected them on a weekend camping trip with my parents, and Show and Tell was always on Friday. My collection was pretty ripe and not very impressive by then.

I remain undeterred. These days, though, I can simply take a photo of it.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

A Brand New Day

I watched Obama's acceptance speech last night -- twice -- and was uncharacterstically moved. I feel hopeful and encouraged today. After such a long, exclusive, aloof leadership, I feel hopeful with our new leader. May God bless him on his arduous journey.

Now let's get out there and continue to make a difference.

I don't mind the occasional anonymous commenter on my blog about my photos, but I have always been uneasy with it. Anonymous posting can lead to false courage and hard feelings.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

More Upland, Upton County, Texas

I have been sick with some sort of flu-like crud and haven't felt like posting, or much of anything else. I was very pleased to get out in the sunshine on our day trip to Upland. It was worth it. And for those who are wondering, I'm feeling much better, thank you.

The pictures I posted yesterday were of my brother and my best friend Donna. A few pictures of me were attempted, but I look like hell and forbade any to be posted.

I was glad you all were curious about the ghost town of Upland, but
I'm half-afraid to write much. While we didn't cross any fence lines, we had an good inkling it was on private property. And what a shame, too. Such a piece of history sitting out there just rotting away. You see, the buildings remaining and crumbling there used to be the county courthouse and jail!

Before Upland was founded, in the late 1800s there were only three families in the county, all open range ranchers. Another man, a man named Henry Halff had a dream and bought the land onto which the town of Upland would be situated. For only the price of the filing fee, he sold lots for businesses and homes. A school was opened in 1908 and the town was made county seat in 1910. But like so many ghost town stories of the West, when the railroad bypassed Upland and instead went through nearby Rankin, it was the beginning of the quick end.

By 1918 there were so few people and families to serve, the Upland post office closed. But the courthouse still wasn't paid in full. Previous residents had no choice but to continue to pay for several more years.

After learning that it wasn't even paid for before it was abandoned makes it all the more sad to me. We three had a feeling the building had been used as possibly a restaurant or pavilion at one time. But it's hard to imagine any real use for it -- it really is in the middle of nowhere, surrounded on all sides by mesquite and pump jacks.

What to do with a crumbling old courthouse, jail, and outbuilding, barely accessible by a "rut road" as Casey called it (which led to lots of Scoobie Doo wordplay)? The place had been picked clean of artifacts, by previous trespassers I'm sure. For us the place made a wonderful adventure and backdrop for a day of taking photos. Maybe it's long outlived its purpose, but the great silhouette of the courthouse can be seen for miles, calling like a siren to the curious.



Monday, November 03, 2008