Snob Photography

Sometimes I look through the viewfinder, and I am overwhelmed with pure aesthetics. I follow the light where it takes me.  This mood is relatively rare, and the results in retrospect are not always great. In fact, frequently the results are just trite.

But sometimes they aren’t.

I have never understood the contempt some photographers have for digital. I save almost all the photos I’ve ever taken.  Pre-digital photos sit in boxes, slowly fading, but the digital photos look just the same as when I first took them. It is quite possible they could look the same ten thousand years from now.

But honestly, much of the time I take pictures as memos.  Pictures out bus windows, just to remember what I saw.  Pictures of something on an ad, pictures of the wifi password at a hotel. These pictures are useful, rather than beautiful or interesting.

Here’s a picture of the almost dry Li River in China.  A memory:

Li River


From the open market in L’Isle-sur-la-Sorgue

Amazon says: “Discover the world’s all-time bestseller in an entirely new light”.  The “Books you may like” section has “The Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark”, by Carl Sagen, as its first suggestion.

A Cruise up the Inside Passage, 2011-07-06

July 2011 we took a family cruise through the Alaska Inside Passage.

Cruising the Inside Passage

The highlight of the trip was a visit to the Tracy Arm Fjord.

Up the Tracy Arm

It was early morning.  It was very still.

At the end of the fjord is the Sawyer Glacier.  The fjord was undoubtedly cut by that glacier and it’s vanished cousins.  The fjord is 600 feet deep below the glacier; you could think of this like floating 600 feet in the air through Yosemite Valley. This cliff would be much higher…

Here’s the Sawyer Glacier:

Sawyer Glacier

Though I didn’t get a picture, my most vivid memories are of flocks of large birds in the distance, flying over the water. Geese, pelicans, maybe, flying in silence.  This is wilderness — no roads filled with family vans looking for a campsite here.


Side Canyon
Another Side Canyon

The side canyons are beautiful and forbidding.  The area is part of the “Tracy Arm-Fords Terror Wilderness”, and according to the USDA, “…there are no established hiking trails or public recreation facilities…”  However, I’m sure that with sufficient determination and resources it would be possible to trek in some of these canyons.