I cut my teeth photographing Joshua Tree National Park with my first medium format Hasselblad somewhere around 2000. Looking back the photos I was so proud of at the time have a lot of flaws. But, my memories are some of the best I have ever had photographing a National park or the outdoors in general. I fell in love with this park and its unusual and amazingly distinct Joshua Trees. It breaks my heart to see that the park has been shut down due to politics. And it is even worse to read reports of damage to the park’s treasured and protected Joshua Trees. I am disappointed in the people who would do such damage to a park and it’s innocent trees. And I am disappointed in our government for not doing what it has been charged to do. It is up to us individually to make good decisions and protect our treasures. Do no harm, Leave no trace behind and take care of our parks, P.L.E.A.S.E.
I stopped by CSU Sacramento for a visit to another Wide Open Walls Street Art piece.
I’ve seen photos of this one all over social media and finally made it for a visit! It’s pretty iconic for the city, the wide open walls project, and the university.
It seems to me that this wide open walls project has really brought a vibrancy to the downtown area that has re-energized some otherwise boring or run down buildings. It has also given artists the opportunity to show off their skills like this bright and cheerful example. I continue to stumble upon these hidden gems and hope to keep bringing you more.
Sacramento, particularly downtown, is full of beautiful old houses. Featured here are two completely different examples. The Leland Stanford Mansion and the Curtis Park Dragon House couldn’t be more different.
The Dragon House is a labor of mosaic love by owners who clearly take pride in eccentricity versus the Leland Stanford Mansion, a bastion of the old guard of Victorian Sacramento. I would venture to guess I wouldn’t be able to give away the Dragon House to some of my friends and family but somehow I find it more interesting than the pure and perfect architecture of the Stanford mansion.
The Stanford mansion, recently rehabilitated, is full of history and Victorian pomp and circumstance and stands as a magnificent example of the time. It is a well known Sacramento icon which represents the city and even the State for official functions and is a state park during other times. The mosaic Dragon House is a private bungalow with no official public history, at least not yet. Yet, when I ask around about it locals all know what and where it is. It’s more of an unknown Sacramento gem.
Which do you prefer?!
*Happy New Year Everyone! I hope 2019 brings all of you safe, peaceful, and memorable travels!