Monday, August 14, 2017

Pearson's Falls and Glen, Saluda NC

I detoured on my way home from Brevard to re-visit another of my favorite places.  With great foresight, the Tryon Garden Club purchased this property in 1931 to protect it from development, and have maintained and managed it ever since.  This North Carolina Heritage Area supports an amazing variety of biological and scenic diversity.  The trails and forests are renowned for their rare and prolific wildflowers, and the cascades and primary falls are really impressive. Kudos to the non-profit Tryon Garden Club for an excellent job of preserving this gem.  The admission fee of $5 is used to maintain the property and donations are tax deductible.  Put it on your "must visit" list.

Saturday, August 12, 2017

Summer Weekend in Brevard

Western North Carolina, and especially the Brevard area, is one of my all time favorite places to be.  It is lush and vibrant in the Summer, with the streams and rivers full and turbulent from the frequent showers and storms.  This was a spontaneous last minute get-away and I visited many of my favorite haunts.  I also found some new gems thanks to my GPS that took me on routes I had never traveled before.  Here are a couple of images from today.

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Unsettled Summer Skies

This summer we in Charleston have had our fair share of summer storms and unsettled weather, particularly in the evenings.  Last night was supposed to be a full moonrise, and of course the moon obliged, except that it was completely obscured by clouds on the horizon.  The western skies were also cloud-filled, but the setting sun blazed through them creating drama over the Charleston skyline. Here are a couple of the pics, not what I'd planned, but that is very often the case.  Just gotta go with the flow.


Sunday, July 30, 2017

Forests of James Island County Park

Of course we know that the woods of James Island County Park are not very expansive, but at times when you are walking or biking the trails, you can imagine that they are, because occasionally there is no sign of anything man made.  For fun I took some photos and converted them to black and white, and if you didn't know where they had been taken, you would never suspect that these scenes existed in the midst of our suburban sprawl.

Friday, July 28, 2017

Old Charleston Favorites

It's been alternately hot and rainy, and I haven't been motivated to get out and shoot much lately, so I've been working on organizing my files instead.  These were a couple that I shot in 2012 from the top of the Sergeant Jasper building. Ugly building I know, but kinda nostalgic because it will be coming down very soon.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Evening at the JICP Fishing Dock

After what seemed like weeks of unsettled weather, the clouds moved out of the area this evening, and with the humidity still relatively low (for July), it was just gorgeous.  I decided to get some exercise at the James Island County Park, but saw that it was shaping up to be a beautiful evening, so I grabbed my camera from the car and headed for the fishing dock to enjoy it.  I just love that park!

Monday, July 10, 2017

Full Moonrise

Always chasing the moon and pursuing the ultimate moon rise shot.  It's like being in search of the holy grail. I will never get there, but it sure was pretty on the West Ashley Greenway the other night.  Hot and buggy, but pretty.

Saturday, July 8, 2017

New Aerial Images uploaded

I had been trying to schedule a flight for over two weeks, but the weather had been rainy, stormy, hazy or just uncooperative in some way or another.  I finally got a break on Thursday evening and even though the temperature was in the mid nineties (and it was also pretty windy), I think we managed to get some decent shots.  I paid for it because my stomach did not appreciate the flying conditions, but all in the line of duty!  I have 600+ to edit, but here are a few that caught my eye initially.

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Happy Birthday USA

A day late, yes, but I didn't want to let the occasion slip by without marking it.  The United States is definitely not united.  As celebrations took place throughout the country yesterday, this is a solemn reality that should give most responsible citizens a reason to pause. Regardless of our political persuasions and agendas, wouldn't it be wonderful if we could restore mutual respect, be more willing to listen than to talk, and not be so arrogant as to believe it is only our point of view that has any value.  That's how it has to be in families, otherwise we don't get along very well.  I for one want to be a peacemaker in my corner on a daily basis, and try to become part of a solution instead of perpetuating the problem, of which there are legion.  Hatred and scorn have never achieved anything positive.

Sunday, July 2, 2017

Chasing the ISS

My "spot the Station" email alerted me as follows:  "Time: Sunday July 02 5:50AM, Visible: 4 min, Max Height: 55°, Appears: 11° above SSW, Disappears: 43° above E". Looking at the Google map coordinates, I figured that the Folly Beach pier would be a good place from which to view and photograph it, so I set my alarm clock accordingly.  I guessed that a maximum height of 55 degrees could be included in the frame, but as I watched it hurtle through the sky, it passed almost overhead, impossible to photograph while still keeping the ground in view.  I would have thought that 90° maximum height would have been more accurate, but then I guess I'm interpreting it wrong (wouldn't wan't to argue with NASA) and anyway Math was never my strong point.  In any event, I enjoyed the show and then stayed to watch the sun come up in the company of lots of other early risers.  I'm always glad later that I made the effort to get out of bed although I need to find someone to explain how to correctly predict the path of the ISS.

Saturday, June 24, 2017

Sunflowers say Summertime!

It's hard not to smile when confronted by fields of sunflowers. There's something inherently cheerful and happy about big yellow blobs of color, especially together with a bright blue sky.  Every year I hunt them down and so it becomes challenging to present them from a different perspective, and not just have the 2017 sunflowers looking exactly like the 2016 sunflowers.  These were photographed on Highway 17S with permission from the owner, Glenn Smoak.  For inquiries contact him at  In post-processing I played with a software painting program called Impressions 2 from Topaz.

Saturday, June 10, 2017

Another Moon, Another Month ...

As the years go by, I become more conscious of their swift passing, more aware that I am on a timeline and that the weeks that go by are irrecoverable.  In many ways, that makes everything more important, the seasons, the tides, the moon phases, relationships, meaning in every sense.  Anyway, that's a very short overview of my musings of late. This was the moon last night from the Charleston City Marina, with a few fireworks from the River Dogs game thrown in for good measure.

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

A Tale of Three Steeples

The steeples of Mother Emmanuel Church, St. Matthews Lutheran Church, and the Citadel Square Baptist Church, one image taken this afternoon, one at sunset, and the other during the "blue hour" at around 8.30pm.

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Space Station Flyby

If you go on to the NASA website, you can sign up for email alerts that will let you know when the space station will be visible in your area. Sometimes it's just not convenient, like at 3am, or when you have to be doing something somewhere else, but this evening was perfect. My "spot the station" alert informed me that it would be visible for six minutes, appearing 10 degrees above Southwest at 9:09pm and disappearing 10 degrees above Northeast.  You would think that with such specific information it would be possible to document its entire path across the sky, but I only managed to pick it up about half way through its transit. OK, next time I'll do better.  In any event, it was a beautiful evening to be out in the James Island County Park, one of my very happy places.