Passions — a blog

Waterfall Fix

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Latourell Falls

Latourell Falls, photographed from the parking lot viewpoint.

Like a lot of photographers, I’m addicted to waterfalls. I don’t photograph them a lot because I haven’t figured out how to make money from them — too many great photos and not enough buyers. But I was down to Vancouver, Washington at the end of March for the annual Professional Photographers of Washington conference and had a morning free so I headed up the Columbia Gorge for a waterfall fix. Continue reading

Red-flowering Currant

Red-flowering Currant against wooden fence

Red-flowering Currant against wooden fence in Annie & Bob’s backyard

A few days ago my friend Annie called to say her red-flowering currant (Ribes sanguineum) was about to burst into full bloom, inviting me to swing by and photograph it. She has a couple of nice shrubs against the fence in her backyard and when I visited on March 16 one of the two was in full bloom. Continue reading

I Love Photographing Homes

I opened my copy of the Bellingham Herald this morning (yes, we still get the newspaper delivered daily) and saw another of the homes I photographed on the front of the real estate insert.


Northwest Homes March 12, 2015

Michelle Harrington, the listing agent at Windermere in Fairhaven, is a delightful go-getter who has been one of my clients for real estate photography for about a year.

Real estate photography is a service I added to my business late in 2013 when Kena Brashear, the realtor in my BNI networking group, asked me if I photographed homes. Kena knew me primarily as a portrait photographer — I photographed her family and her business portrait. I photographed a high-end country home for Kena, she loved how I approached the job and the final results, and we’ve been working together ever since. She connected me to Michelle, who referred me to several other agents in her office. Real estate, like many other businesses, really is built on personal connections. Continue reading

Foraging for Fungi

Red-cap Bolete [Leccinum aurantiacum]

Red-cap Bolete [Leccinum aurantiacum]

I spent a couple of very enjoyable days with family foraging for mushrooms near The Mountaineers Meany Lodge just east of Snoqualmie Pass. My son Zach and his fiance Kristina invited us and her parents to join them at the annual mushroom weekend at Meany. It’s something I’ve done several times in the past, mostly in the 1990s and it had been some 10 years since I last participated.

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Alliums on the Cover

My friends at The American Gardener magazine selected one of my photographs of ‘Purple Sensation’ ornamental onions for the cover of the September/October 2014 issue.


American Gardener Cover

The cover photograph was made in late May, 2010 at VanDusen Botanical Garden in Vancouver, British Columbia.

I have two more Allium photos inside the magazine on pages 14 & 16, plus one of western poison ivy on page 25. I’ve been contributing to The American Gardener since 1997. Thank you, David Ellis and Mary Yee, for continuing to choose my photography for the magazine.

No Cougars on the Divide, Just Autumn Brilliance

Sitka Mountain Ash and Cascade Blueberries

Sitka Mountain Ash and Cascade Blueberries with drifting mist

Last Saturday I made time to get out into the mountains for one of the few day hikes I’ve done all year. I went with my friends Rick Dubrow and Cindi Landreth, who were also responsible for the design and construction of my studio remodel. They own Adaptations and A-1 Builders.

Rick & Cindi

Rick Dubrow & Cindi Landreth among giant Mountain Hemlocks on the Cougar Divide trail.

We picked Cougar Divide as our destination. The road takes you to nearly 5000′ so there’s little climbing to get to subalpine ridges, meadows, and forest. It’s a long rocky ridge that leads south toward Mount Baker. The trail is an unofficial boot track that enters the Mount Baker Wilderness just a few hundred yards from the parking area. In mid-summer Cougar Divide is known for dense swarms of mosquitoes, but in the rain of early October there were none of the nasty pests buzzing about.

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Spiraling Up

Matt holds spiral staircase pole in position

Matt holds spiral staircase pole in position

One of the very cool features of my new studio is the spiral staircase that connects the camera room with the offices upstairs.

Back in early July Mike Gill and Matt from A-1 Construction puzzled through the instructions and assembled it. This was the first spiral they’d built, and like everything done for the first time it took a little figuring to get it right.

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Everybody’s a photographer

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These days, nearly everybody carries a camera with them everywhere all the time. Everybody’s a photographer. But not everybody is a “Capital P” Photographer.

In the Arb

In the Arb, a roadside view in Bellingham’s Sehome Hill Arboretum.

I read A Photo Editor, a photography blog, from time to time and today I came across a block of text in the sidebar that intrigued me so I clicked through to the source. It was an interview with Aaron Schuman, an American photographer, writer, editor, and curator who curated Krakow Photomonth. Continue reading

Portrait Garden in Mid-Summer

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Turner Photographics portrait garden

Turner Photographics portrait garden, as seen from our second-story bedroom window.

I spent several hours on this overcast Sunday at the end of the long Fourth of July weekend photographing our garden at its mid-summer peak.

Natalie and I have been enjoying watching the garden unfold with the seasons. It’s our first year at our Wynn Road home, and the garden was established by previous owners. We’re told that everyone who has lived here since the early 1960s has been an avid gardener. There’s evidence of long-term gardening.

We’ll certainly make changes and additions in the coming years, but for now we’re mostly just doing a little editing and enjoying what we find. Some of the perennials are assertive and are crowding other plants, so there’s going to be some shovel pruning in our future.

For now, come along and enjoy our garden with us in this video slideshow. It runs about 6 1/2 minutes. Click the Full Screen icon in the lower right corner for best viewing enjoyment.

If you’d like to visit in person, give us a call to arrange a time.