Saturday, January 31, 2009

Fort Flagler on the Peninsula

Fort Flagler, along with the heavy batteries of Fort Worden and Fort Casey, once guarded nautical entrance to Puget Sound. These posts, established in the late 1890's, became the first line of a fortification system designed to prevent a hostile fleet from reaching such targets as the Bremerton Naval Yard and the cities of Seattle, Tacoma and Everett. Construction began in 1897 and continued in one form or another until the fort was closed in 1953. The property was purchased as a state park in 1955. Fort Flagler is named after Brigadier General Daniel Webster Flagler.


When I was little, my Mom took me on a trip to Port Townsend. We stayed in one of the officers houses at Fort Flagler, sharing it with another family. I remember playing in the old bunkers and scaring each other in the tunnels. I took a trip to Port Townsend on my birthday, but missed this main reason for going, thus a return was mandatory.

walking up to the light

I parked my car amongst a throng of teenage lacrosse players and started my walk towards the bunkers. Each one was dug into the ground, with a look out stationed only yards away gazing upon a beautiful view of Admiralty Inlet. Battery Reserve was built in 1897 and housed two 10 inch Barbette guns, with rooms below to haul up the powder and projectiles.

colors to outrageous

The same with Battery Rawlins, however Battery Wilhelm contained two 12 inch Barbette guns along with a plotting room and telephone switch boards. In 1914 the switchboards were moved to rooms into the lower level of Battery Wilhelm for greater survivability from air attack.


I was completely alone on the bunkers, but the sound of teenage girls laughter drifted in and out on the wind so I wasn't too frightened. However, I can't say that Pink Floyd didn't run through my head the entire time. "Mother do you think they'll drop the bomb". The Wall has always been one of my favorite movies and album.

I'll hold it

I followed a path down to another gun location and peered over a cliff to my doom. I noticed and open door to a room that seemed built into the mountain, not like they all weren't, but when I peered in I saw a very old, and hopefully unused in quite some time, toilet. A perfect opportunity for a composite.

winter daisy

The cliffs were so lovely and I noticed a trail leading down to a lighthouse on the beach. There were cars parked there so I decided to drive down instead of trekking all the way around. I started my accent, but for some reason looked down and noticed a tiny little lone daisy. I couldn't believe my luck! It's quite a bit into winter and yet this little guy held on. I couldn't help but think he was waiting for me.

birdie sunset

I had to wait for the next ferry home and I was so tired that I almost fell asleep in my car. I had started this journey very early so by the time it ended I was done. However, I pulled myself out of my car and headed to the top deck to catch the sunset...and I'm glad I did.

It was a good Saturday, and another day that makes me grateful to live in this beautiful state.

Friday, January 30, 2009

a walk through the neighborhood


I love living in the city.

world traveler in color

Anytime I'm bored or lonely, all I have to do is step out my door and I'll find something interesting.

seven thirty bus

If we install a toll over I-90 I'm assuming I'll be down here a lot. I can't imagine paying $2.50 each time I drive over it for work. But let me say this, I have one of the best commutes. On a clear day I can see two mountain ranges, three volcanoes, two cityscapes and all on a floating bridge. Seattle is the only place I know that has traffic because people are looking at how beautiful it is.

the green lion sleeps tonight

On a day like today, I never want to move away.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Jessie Baylin Interview

multi-exposure lomohulga?

12:30pm Saturday afternoon I found myself standing in the Gibson Showroom in Pioneer Square staring at one of most beautiful girls I've seen in a long time. With a hug she introduced herself and her band and proceeded to play for the 7 people in the room. She was so nervous you might have thought she was playing to a packed house.

Gibson Showroom

Playing six songs (four for "practice" as she had just started playing the guitar live) she got stronger and stronger with each note strummed.

gibson one

She really shined when she put down the guitar and grabbed the mike; at times closing her eyes to feel the music laid down by her bandmates. Playing acoustically, the sound translated completely different when I saw them live later on that night. By then all her fears were gone and she played to the sold out crowd with abandon. All around me I heard "who is she, she's so good, I love this".

jessie baylin

Check out her music on her myspace:

Monday, January 26, 2009

alright, enough already

The beautiful blue evening sky caused me to take a moment away from the pretentious lyric and poetry spewing posts I have been writing as of late. Instead, I created a little mosaic to appreciate the sky that gave me a big smile on my way home from work today.

I pulled out my camera and rolled down the window and just randomly shot while I drove down the off-ramp. Maybe that's why I love this style so much, it doesn't have to be perfect, in focus, following the's just fun. Isn't that what it's supposed to be about anyway?


always welcome the color



Sun through the curtains,
I gave you a sign,
The birds were all quiet,
You were so quiet,
Some hear a call,
Some are the messengers,
I thumb through the pictures,
and know them all.

Friday, January 23, 2009

for always

Brother, can you spare a dime?

So long as I don't think of you, everything is fine
The day breaks, and the morning is mine
I don't care, she says as she passes by the mirror
I've lived too long in her shadow
And finally my own is getting clearer

You want me to be
You want me to act
You want me to say
You want me to live

You want, you want, you want

Now, it's me
Just me

So stop

Let me be
Let me act
let me say

Thursday, January 22, 2009

conversations with strangers

it's in my dna

I want so badly to believe that "there is truth, that love is real"
And I want life in every word to the extent that it's absurd.

I know you're wise beyond your years, but do you ever get the fear
That your perfect verse is just a lie you tell yourself to help you get by?

I might be wrong

no driving past this point

I might be wrong
I might be wrong
I could've sworn I saw a light coming on

I used to think
I used to think
There was no future left at all
I used to think

Open up, begin again
Let's go down the waterfall
Think about the good times and never the bad
Never the bad

2008 Adventures

Quick links to all the mini-breaks in 2008. A year of adventure, all wrapped up in one post! Please enjoy.

Ancient Lakes
Big Creek Falls / Otter Falls
Blue Lake / North Cascades Highway
Deception Pass
Denny Creek / Lake Melakwa
Fidalgo Island
Granite Lake
Highland Park
Iron Horse State Park
Kendall Katwalk
Kings Lake Bog
Lake Kachess
Lost Lake
Mowich Lake
Quartz Creek
Rattlesnake Mountain
Summerland Trail / Mt. Rainer
Talapus Lake / Olallie Lake
Birthday Trip To The Pennisula
Twin Falls
Rattlesnake Lake in the Snow

And my favorite pictures from 2008


blown out


dirty daisy

why don't we do it in the road


noisy bee

jun gonna get ya

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Flickr has been good to me

I've got some new ideas a brewin' so I'm taking a few days to work on them and explore a different side of my photography. I've been tasked with an assignment and I've been slowly putting it together.

In the meantime, I wanted to mention a couple things. Flickr has been a fun site for me and although you have to take each comment with a grain of salt, it's nice to get opinions on my photos from people I don't know. My Flickr DNA has let me know that two of my photos have been showcased in Explore. With 5,248 photos uploaded in just the time that you've read up till this point that's a pretty good feat, I think! I'm happy because they are two of my favorite photos.

Also, two of my photos were added to Schmap for the world trade center in downtown and also Lakeview Cemetery on Capitol Hill. Both terrible pictures, but cool to be included. I also had a photo added to the Seattle PI during the floods. Again, all silly little things but it's fun to have some of my stuff out there even if it is just pointing and shooting.

I still don't think I'm any good, but I'm learning every day and the idea that I understand why some photos I take are crap actually gives me hope. I've had fun learning technically, now I'm ready to start learning artistically. I'm excited to see what comes from it.

Monday, January 19, 2009

sunsets are stupid

I tried, but failed to take a decent shot of the sunset this evening.

I've been excited about lomo and went through some of the shots I took in the last couple days to apply the technique. When I finished looking at my disappointing shots from this evening, I started going through my photo's from last year for the first time to see if there were any that I could play with. I had to be selective, it turns out, as it's still stupidly hard for me to relive last year through my shots. So, I picked one and closed out the 2008 folder...let's wait till I'm ready, shall we?


Craaaaaaazy LOMO!

Ok, I think I'm done for the day.



lomo tv

lomo girl


lomo protest

Due to the vignetting, these actually look better on white. Click through to the flickr page if you are so inclined. LOMO!

taste the happy!

Oh what a weekend.

My hiatus from sobriety and my misanthropic ways, along with a brief study in human nature turned sour on Saturday night. I woke up Sunday morning, grateful to be in my own bed and although I was happy that the sun was out, I also felt a general disdain for mankind. Time for a drive.

I pointed my car north this time and just drove. I landed in Marysville to stop for some gas. I almost ran over a guy in the street and when I walked in to by some water a lady came in the door yelling "long screws, I'm here for long screws". I looked at the kid behind the counter and said "This place is weird". Turns out he had just moved here from LA and he said "I've seen some strange things in my life, but nothing compares to this place".

Poo Lake looked majestically beautiful with the clear skies and crisply defined mountains reflected in it's poo surface. I decided not to go any further south and I pulled out my iPhone to look for some green spaces. I noticed Lake Stevens and thought that sounded promising, unfortunately it turned out to be a lake with houses surrounding it. I noticed signs for Granite Falls so I continued on.

ray of something

Fog was present in little patches all along the road and as I came into town I noticed a lake covered with the sun rays peaking through. I do not like a single picture I took today. I'm positive it was due to my mental state, I wasn't in it. I just needed to drive and look at something pretty. Photography took a back seat today.

I drove through the town and found the falls, which is actually a fish ladder. The water rushes below you and when you look below your feet you can see the river through the grates. It made me really dizzy, but it was a great spot. The sky was a dark blue and the green of the trees just popped. I can't wait to go back.

pink moon

I made my way towards Mt. Pilchuck and stopped at the trailhead, the road was snowed over. I walked out into the middle of the street and started slipping. I noticed the entire stretch of asphalt was ice. The fog that had lingered for most of the day had created a sheet of black ice across the road. I snapped a picture hoping to capture the conditions, and as I checked panda's site this morning I noticed his front page was exactly what I had shot. I chuckled a bit.

The setting sun cast a purple hue across the mountains and as I drove into downtown, tired from my adventure, the pollution helped to create the orangey glow of a stereotypical sunset. I noticed a great location to capture it, but as I parked someone beat me to it. I let them have it, but vowed to come back tomorrow and try it again. It probably would have turned out blurry anyway...oh I'm glad the weekend is over.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

a silly day of shooting

The sun is out!

I woke up a bit hungover from my first night of drinking really anything in the last couple weeks. I had not wanted to drink, but our work holiday party was yesterday and honestly any excuse to drown out my co-workers singing "White Wedding" on Rock band was something I wasn't going to turn down. I had invited a few friends to see "Che", a four hour epic which turned out to be about 4 hours and 45 minutes, and after the movie they were so in need of a drink that I was dragged along. Suspiciously this turned out to be a double date, I was grateful that Casey joined our group after the movie as I'm just not ready to...well, date I guess.

seeing light

As I was saying, I woke up hungover and texted Casey to meet me for coffee. The sun was out and it enticed him to join me on a walk down to the market. I had hoped to buy some flowers but all I really found were tulips. Slim pickings this time of year.

stop innocence

There was a pro-Gaza rally going on downtown and I tried to take a few shots, but between the yelling Jesus people, the lone Jew holding an Israeli flag and a camera, and the shouting from the Palestinian protesters I couldn't concentrate. I wanted to add at least one shot to...well, I don't know why. Maybe just to appreciate free speech and our right to protest. To be clear, I don't support either side. I just would like for people everywhere to stop hurting.

the world through his eyes

The light this time of year is so interesting. I love how the sun hugs close to the horizon casting shadows over everything like a perpetual sunset. The light was hitting Casey perfectly and I really love how I can see the street through his glasses. I decided to leave in the reflection, kind of like seeing the world through his eyes.

down home burrito

My day of silly shooting was completed with a down home burrito at Bimbo's. It's nice to just shoot sometimes. Not caring about a message or a style, just having fun. Honestly that's what it's all about.

Now do the hooookey poookey! Ok, I'm delirious and need a nap.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

two views, one day

Not every shot I take is depressing... It was a lovely day there, and the beach was a beautiful blue with colorful pebbles, remnants of crabs and sand dollars. I took one home, which I haven't done since I was a little girl. I would spend my summers with my grandparents on Pismo Beach in California. We would walk the beaches looking for starfishes and sand dollars. She still has a few in her bathroom as decoration.

If you ever get the chance, ask me about the Gay Portuguese Festival

shallow water floating

gloomy beach or sunny day?

you decide.

a sunny day

it looks better does everything, except girls. Girls do not look better bigger.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Come As You Are

Insomnia has taken hold and won't let go. I've tried everything, but I still lie awake in bed watching the hours tick by. Three hours sleep is a good night.

Walking out to my living room this morning I saw the sun spilling over my couch, casting a shadow of my blinds on the wall. One more day inside might kill me, so I called in to work sick. Not a lie, I am sick. Sick of the sadness, sick of the clouds, sick of the everlasting gray, sick of missing people, sick of my job, sick of this depression that has gripped me since November 4th.

I stood outside and looked north, I saw clouds: I looked south, I saw clear sky. I began driving south and as the towns began to pass me by I realized that I was heading for the beach.

kill your tv

The coastal towns in Washington don't remind me of the ones in LA at all. Each one is like a Stephen King novel or the movie Mystic Pizza comes to mind. Towns full of fisherman and wharf rats, more like Maine than Manhattan Beach. Aberdeen is no exception. For the town that gave us Kurt Cobain you would think there would be some sort of hipness, even a nod to grunge via broke hipsters...but there was nothing. Even this tv sculpture was just an homage to the town, not a cultural statement.

I continued on, deciding on Westport instead of Ocean Shores. There was promise of a lighthouse, but I never saw one. I was, however, greeted with an expansive beach and when I looked out I saw nothing but water. No mountains, no condos, just acres and acres of ocean. It was beautiful.

nude beach

There were some surfers out and, although it was very cold, the waves were awesome so I couldn't blame them for braving the frigged temperatures. I took a few pictures of them, but for my own viewing pleasure. I was getting quite a few smiles and nods from the gentlemen in wet suits, even using the cute dog trick to talk to me. I guess next time I'm feeling a need for a boost of confidence all I have to do is drive 130 miles east.

It felt good to be out, the salt air was amazing and I can still feel the sun on my face. Too bad the beach is so far away...I need to do this more often.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Sunday, January 11, 2009

A Soggy Sunday On The Ledge

I was peacefully laying in my comfortable bed when a call jolted me from my warmth. The voice on the other end demanded I get up, throw on clothes and go outside. I was on my way to the George with Justin and he wasn't taking no for an answer. Seems as though most of my friends are not letting me mope and shut myself in, for which I'm very grateful.

If you were ever wondering where to find drunk ex-pats at 10:00 am on a Sunday morning, look no further than the George and Dragon pup in Fremont. After a yummy and cheap breakfast of bacon and a fried egg on a roll, massive amounts of coffee (I decided not to partake in a pint before noon) and a loss by Tottham we were off to the next adventure.

I'd been wanting to do a quick hike this weekend and Justin obliged me in a quick jaunt to Rattlesnake Ridge. Honestly, I didn't think he would go. It was rainy, cold and getting late in the day but he was up for the journey.

As this was Panda country, and I haven't hiked with anyone besides the black and white bear, he was on my mind. The lake is very full with all the run off and I was remembering that just a short month ago we were standing on the shore, freezing as the sun set, trying to capture a bald eagle that would only majestically fly when he wasn't watching it through the lens of his camera. He's come along way in the last month with their stupid eagle asses. I missed him today.

I was tired going up the trail and had to stop a few times. I was surprised and a little frustrated as I had come so far over the summer and could have run up to that damn ledge in September. It's funny what a couple months will do to you if you don't exercise and drink massive amounts of liquor. I knew that this hike would be my gauge for my endurance level right now, and boy do I have some work to do.

The trail was wet, the ledge covered in clouds. I took no pictures, but the hike was great. It's always nice to go out, and now I know that I can trust another person up on a mountain. Even if he mocks my stride a little. I mean really, did you have to walk backwards in front of me? Ass... :)

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Minus The Bear at The Showbox

I haven't seen my friend Mr. Kool in a while, but he has a knack for out of the blue random texts that include a concert invite and a "I will not take no for an answer". I got us into the Of Montreal show for free,  so he offered to buy my ticket to see Minus The Bear, and of course I couldn't say no.

We met up at The Whiskey Bar, but as I'm not drinking right now it was nothing but diet soda for me. It's strange how being sober either prompts people to ask you questions as to why or mock you for consciously making a decision not to drink; "You have one more soda and I'm gonna have to cut you off, young lady". They never just accept it. Funny thing was, although this was an all ages show and typically the kids drive me crazy, it was the drunk people that were more annoying. The kids were cool, and just there to enjoy the music.

through the view finder

I had high hopes for this photo when I saw it in my viewfinder, but when I processed it at home I noticed it was too blurry. As my concert photography grows, I'm more and more seeing the need for a new camera...ugh. There were quite a few SLR's out in the audience. There was a guy in front of me who had a D300 and was just holding up the camera high and shooting, all point and shoot style. There was another guy with crazy lenses dead center in the audience who seemed to be working for the band and then there was a girl on the side of the stage who was shooting with two film cameras. Each time she took a shot she would smile, pull the lever to advance to the next frame and then shoot again. I was in awe.

Pete Quirk

The show was a benefit for John Spalding, who is a local musician that died recently of lung cancer. The line up was long, but we spent some time at The Whiskey Bar so we didn't get there until The Cave Singers took to the stage.

The Cave Singers

I really loved this band. I had heard of them before, but never took a listen to any of their stuff. They had a blusey, warm and melodic feel. I took comfort in it, as did the crowd who I could feel swaying with the music. When the lead singer Pete Quirk would tap his feet you could feel the floor pounding in unison.

Rocky Votolato took the stage next and other than a great solo performance at the end, I yawned and raised my eyebrows at their set. They did a cover of "Spanish Bombs" by The Clash that was a travesty. However, it's possible that they might have been a little broken up by the loss of their friend and that effected their performance.

alex on the nord

Minus the Bear took the stage and the crowd went crazy. They are a local band that I never took the time to listen to, mostly because I was under the assumption that there sound was something different. Mr. Kool had seen them two times previous and like the rest of the audience he was singing along.

dave, jake and cory

Crowd surfing ensued and the band just fed off the energy. They flowed easily from one song to the next and surprisingly there was two songs that I recognized.

the crowd

I instantly fell in love with the guitarist, Dave Knudson. I'm a sucker for pedals and this guy worked them in a way that reminiscent of Johnny Greenwood's aggressive style. I wanted to grab a shot of them after the show, but per usual when alcohol and girlfriends are involved, there was drama and Mr. Kool had to take off immediately after the first encore song. After running down to say a quick in person apology to my adoptive brother for a horrible NYE, I headed home proud that I hadn't spent a dime but still had a great night filled with good friends and great music...and for a good cause.