Author Archives: kgrafphoto

Crack in the Ground

“Crack in the Ground”, Lake County, Oregon

Above, a lone sagebrush and sun appear.
The sagebrush peers over the edge watching me.
The sun’s bright fire lights my way.

I have always been fascinated by the unusual geological formations in the eastern Washington/Oregon landscape.  A few weeks ago, several college friends and I went exploring around Christmas Valley, Oregon.  Our first stop was “Crack in the Ground” (see excerpt from Wikipedia below}.  Most of the group scurried along the bottom of the fissure.  I, along  with a special friend, stopped, gazed around in wonderment, and photographed whatever jumped out at me.  By the time the group had walked to the end, walked back to the start, and then walked back to fine us, we had only covered about one half of the distance.  My mind and eyes wondered at every turn.  I am a wondering explorer, not a hiker.

From Wikipedia:

Crack in the Ground is a volcanic fissure about 2 miles (3.2 km) long with depths measuring nearly 30 feet (9 m) below ground level in Central Oregon, United States. The eruptions from the Four Craters Lava Field were accompanied by a slight sinking of the older rock surface, forming a shallow, graben-like structure about 2 miles (3.2 km) wide and extending to the south into an old lake basin. Crack in the Ground marks the western edge of this small, volcano-tectonic depression. The crack is the result of a tension fracture along a hingeline produced by the draping of Green Mountain lava flows over the edge of upthrown side of the concealed fault zone. The fissure is located at the southwest corner of Four Craters Lava Field in the Deschutes National Forest.

Crack in the Ground is estimated to have been created around 1,000 years ago.

Milky Way Over Ft. Rock

Milky Way over Ft. Rock Crater, Central Oregon

A few weeks ago, a few of my college friends and I drove out to a remote area in Central Oregon to photograph the Milky Way.  We had scouted the area on the previous day and thought it would be interesting to photograph the Milky Way rising out of Ft. Rock Crater.  The bright object in the lower left is Mars.  The bright object in the lower right is Jupiter.  We were blessed with this interesting symmetry.

Mary Dahlin wrote this following poem about her experience observing the beautiful sight

                                            The Milky Way over Ft. Rock, Oregon

Our galaxy plots a path from a crater in central Oregon.

Fort Rock, a grand and lonely crater,
looms coolly over flat ground, showing remnants
of what spewed forth a hundred thousand years ago,
short in geologic time but long in human time.

The Milky Way seems to jump out from the center of the crater, 
billions of years the product of our Creator, and we look at it

with Mars on the left and Jupiter on the right.  Much of this is a mystery.
We know it is a galaxy, but it is too great to fully understand.

The colors are green, blue, and bright yellowish white,
all colors of life, like the ocean, the plants, and the sun.

What is time, and how all-important are we, really?

These are questions too difficult to answer, but for a moment
we can accept the complexity of the universe and our own
and be filled with wonder.

Hoar Frost in June

Road to Hurricane Ridge, Olympic National Park, WA

I wasn’t expecting to see Hoar Frost in mid-June.  The conditions were just right as we were driving up to Hurricane Ridge, moist fog and cold temperature.  As soon as I saw the light mist, the frost covered trees, and the contrasting  rock outcroppings, I thought of B&W.  Magic happens!

Sometimes Simpler is Better

Philodendron Leaf, Hawaiian Botanical Gardens

I enjoy photographing botanical subjects.  When reviewing my work, many times I quickly pass over an image that at first does not catch my eye as a “select”. I was going through some images that I photographed a year ago in Hawaii.  This image just grabbed me.  Instead of a leaf, I saw bright lines radiating out, I saw shadows and voids.  I saw a triangular shape inserting itself into a void.  The green color did not add anything to the image, I thought black and white.  The image emerged.

A Time to Reflect

“Reflection”

Today is a special day to reflect.  Life’s timeline is multidimensional.  The past, current, and future intermingle.  As I look back and reflect on loved ones who have passed, a warm, peaceful, and grateful feeling comes into my heart. That feeling transcends into a contemplative outlook of what is yet to come.

Beauty of Moloka’i 8

Moloka’i High Cliffs from Mo’omomi

Waves peacefully swirl
Against protruding cliffs,
Inspire wonder inside me.

This is a long exposure perspective of Molokai’s high cliffs shown in my previous post.  My workshop associates were all around me.  I was totally engulfed in the moment and scene in front of me.  I felt completely alone with Mother Molokai’s  wonderful gift.  I long to go back.

Beauty of Moloka’i 7

Moloka’i North Side Cliffs from Mo’omomi

Guardians strongly protrude above
Thundering waves crash below
The spirit of Mother Moloka’i conducts the score

These cliffs protruding from the north shore of Moloka’i are the tallest in the Pacific.  I spent several minutes just gazing in amazement at this magnificent gift of nature before I first pushed down the shutter. 

Beauty of Moloka’i 6

Palm Grove – Moloka’i

Warm, calm, relaxed
Eyes first close, then slowly open
A new perspective appears 

I set up to photograph the sun setting over the horizon.  I anxiously waited as the sun descended slowly.  Every so often I would shoot a set of exposures for a HDR combination later.  I started to relax and just enjoy the scene.  Then the idea came to take a long exposure.  This resultant image best depicts the peaceful feeling I had watching the sunset.