Monthly Archives: November 2012

Layered Landscape

Folding hills, Biltmore Estate, Asheville, NC

The land is folded, and the curves pile up until there’s a real hill. The whole area is like this: a drapery of landscape that—while never looking harsh or even especially steep—nevertheless adds up to no-fooling verticality.

A Year Ago: Key West Bicycles

Colorfully painted bikes, decorated with beads, Key West, FLBicycles are everywhere in Key West…
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On the Run

You’ve probably already seen this in six other places on the web. I don’t care. Watch it again, in HD, full screen.

See a cheetah in all its cheetahness cheetahing. So beautiful.

A Year Ago: Cat House

Polydactylic cat at Hemingway House, Key West, FLThere was a man who loved cats…
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Patio furniture and exterior wall, Antler Village, Biltmore Estate, Asheville, NC

Light and dark and an incredible array of textures: this image demonstrates how pattern can define our perception of a space. Certainly there are some perspectival cues, but this picture depends more upon the juxtaposition of surfaces and the interplay of solidity and translucency for its impact. It’s like a visual venn diagram. (I really like this one.)

A Year Ago: Water

Wharf at Key West, FLKey West’s signal feature is that it is an island at the confluence of large bodies of water…
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Last of Autumn

Bass Pond, Biltmore Estate, Asheville, NC

It got properly cold yesterday, but today was gloriously sunny and warmer. Tomorrow is meant to be warmer still, more autumn than early winter weather. Everyone is promising a brutal winter; I’d be happy for that forecast to be entirely incorrect. (The less the weather interferes with my housebuilding, the better.)

I’m continuing to build my relationship with my land and my neighbors-to-be. It’s a particularly rewarding pursuit. I can’t wait to see what becomes of my tulip bulbs.

A Year Ago: Higher Ground

Key West CemeteryAs the time for my trip to Key West neared, I did some preliminary reading so I’d have a general idea of the lay of the land…
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Moon Vine Wire Fence

Always aspire.

A Year Ago: Gratitude

Spiky pink blossom, Key West.I had a slightly irreverent post about the Key West cemetery queued up…
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Steel beam remnant in concrete.

There used to be a short-track racing stadium where Carrier Park is now. This must have once been part of the bleacher scaffolding.

A Year Ago: Sky

Sunset from Mallory Square, Key WestI have so many pictures from Key West that I want to share with you—I hardly know where to start…
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In Gratitude

Tree by the French Broad River, Asheville, NC

For the beauty of the earth,
For the beauty of the skies,
For the love which from our birth
Over and around us lies…

Gratitude for love and life, whether they arrive in the manner we expect or not, is the foundation of all happiness.

Happy Thanksgiving, dear friends!

A Year Ago: Doorway Palette

Key West front door with color palette.Key West’s history traces a familiar pattern…
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Winter Archetype

Graveyard Fields Trail, Blue Ridge, NC

The scene, all winter—
But the haze of small red buds
Is waiting for spring.

A Year Ago: Non-Conformist

Tree trunk interrupting picket fence.This image goes a long way to summing up the charm of Key West…
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Ornamental Geometry

Antler Hill Fountain, Biltmore Estate, Asheville, NC

Borders are interesting places. They are loci of strife or of harmony. They can be gradual transitions or abrupt shifts; they provide the contrast that makes vision possible. Edges are where change propagates or dies. A culture that fails to respect those who inhabit the outlying regions—where the new and strange are encountered and negotiated—will stagnate, grow rigid, and fossilize.

We can know our limits without being stifled by them. We can respect boundaries while exploring and celebrating them. And if we are flexible and adaptable enough, we can allow our margins to affect our core as we grow and change. Other voices and our own experiences at the outmost reaches, beyond the comfortably familiar, can teach us to enlarge our hearts.

A Year Ago: Six Sunrises

Key West[As always, unless otherwise indicated, the MoS project photos are taken with my OG iPhone.]
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Winter Walk

Graveyard Fields/Upper Falls Trail, Blue Ridge, NC

This is a level, non-rocky portion of the Graveyard Fields/Upper Falls trail at mile 419 on the Blue Ridge Parkway. It was a beautiful day, but I spent most of the walk headed directly into the westering sun, and the glare was ferocious. The rest of the trail is hilly and rocky, and I did quite a bit of tripping and slipping—once nearly dunking myself in a shallow stream.

Much as I enjoy just picking up and heading out, I think in future I’ll try to arrange to not do this kind of walk alone. It’s fairly easy to wrench an ankle or clonk your head, and on a less-travelled route that could be most unfortunate. The map for this trail wasn’t very good, and the signage and trail markings were among the worst I’ve seen for such a popular spot. If I do go on my own again, I’ll leave my name, intended route, and contact info in a note on my windshield.

Although it was not quite five miles, it was more strenuous than I expected. My thighs are a little stiff today. Once I had my back to the sun I was able to enjoy the scenery and the spectacularly clean mountain air. And the drive back on the Parkway in late afternoon light was magical.

Two Years Ago: Nature’s Palette

Sunset with selected color swatches.People kept telling me about something called color theory…
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