Monthly Archives

May 2011

Mount Soledad Cross, La Jolla, California

California, La Jolla

La Jolla’s Mount Soledad Cross is a 29-foot Latin cross made of concrete standing atop Mt. Soledad, overlooking the Pacific Ocean. The current Mt. Soledad Cross was built in 1954, but a previous cross stood on the spot since 1913. The Mount Soledad Cross has been the subject of much litigation. Supporters of the cross consider it an important war memorial, while opponents feel it violates the separation of church and state. Currently, the cross and the land on which it stands are owned by the nonprofit Mount Soledad Memorial Association. My hunch is that the cross will remain standing for years to come.

The Mount Soledad Cross, a landmark in La Jolla, California. The Mount Soledad Cross is a 29-foot-tall cross erected in 1954

The Mount Soledad Cross, a landmark in La Jolla, California. The Mount Soledad Cross is a 29-foot-tall cross erected in 1954.
Image ID: 26547
Location: La Jolla, California, USA

The Mount Soledad Cross, a landmark in La Jolla, California. The Mount Soledad Cross is a 29-foot-tall cross erected in 1954

The Mount Soledad Cross, a landmark in La Jolla, California. The Mount Soledad Cross is a 29-foot-tall cross erected in 1954.
Image ID: 26553
Location: La Jolla, California, USA

See more Mount Soledad Cross photos.

Brain Rocks, White Pocket, Arizona

Arizona, White Pocket

White Pocket Photographs, Vermilion Cliffs National Monument, Arizona

White Pocket is a relatively large area compared to, say, the Wave in nearby North Coyote Buttes. When I was there with some buddies in March, I saw many compositions that looked appealing but was unable to make photos of them in the little time we had when the light actually “got good”. The brain rocks area at White Pocket is amazing, some of the best examples of brain rocks I’ve ever seen, so I spent a good portion of my time there framing them up. This was taken just after sunset, when the cloud formation above the rocks was most interesting. Could these in fact be sections of some enormous central cortex: the temporal lobe and parietal lobe of some ancient underground fossilized Homer Simpson whose skull — the only part of him still above ground — was lobotomized by the howling winds of the American Southwest? And also, why did I just say that? OK, that was weak but these rocks are so cool they are known to cause photographers to wax poetic and say innane things at times. I can’t wait to return to White Pocket, its awesome.

Brain rocks and clouds, sunset, White Pocket, Vermillion Cliffs National Monument, Arizona

Brain rocks and clouds, sunset, White Pocket.
Image ID: 26619
Location: White Pocket, Vermillion Cliffs National Monument, Arizona, USA

Pacific White-Sided Dolphin Photos

California, Dolphin, Underwater Life, Underwater Photography

Pacific White-Sided Dolphin Photos

The first dolphins I ever photographed were Pacific white-sided dolphins (Lagenorhynchus obliquidens). This extremely fast moving species of dolphin often appears around San Diego in winter, but is normally found much further north ranging as far as Alaska and around to Japan. We would freedive in the open ocean and hope our presence interested the white-sided dolphins enough to swim by and investigate us. The first image I ever had that placed in a major photography competition (Nature’s Best, early 90s I think) was an image of a Pacific white-sided dolphin towing a piece of kelp. It would drop the kelp in front of me, wait for me swim toward it and then zoom by to take it again before I could reach it. Schooled by a dolphin … Psych! For those of you who have only used digital cameras: can you imagine trying to freeze the motion of a fast-swimming white-sided dolphin using ISO-64 in a relatively dimly lit underwater setting? That’s what we used to have to do. It was downright primitive.

Pacific white sided dolphin, Lagenorhynchus obliquidens, San Diego, California

Pacific white sided dolphin.
Image ID: 00036
Species: Pacific white-sided dolphin, Lagenorhynchus obliquidens
Location: San Diego, California, USA