Category Archives: Structures

Makes My Knees Shake

“The Duomo Main Entrance”
Florence, Italy

My mind is back in Florence, reminiscing on our recent trip to Italy. Standing near the main stairs leading inside the Duomo, my knees and whole body felt weak under the grandeur of the awe inspiring cathedral facade. It was difficult for me to stand still enough to create a steady image.

Being a small town country boy, I stand back and wonder. It is hard for me to comprehend what it took to create such a wonderful piece of architecture and art: the patrons, the designers, the political battles, the financial resources, the workers, the time it took to build, the people for whom it was built. I imagine and dream, then pause and enjoy the wonderful gift of what was created centuries ago.

Never Forget

“World Trade Center and 9/11 Memorial”
New York City

Now, on this Memorial Day more than ever, we all need to step back and remember what our Nation has gone through to establish and maintain our Democracy. We need to honor all who have given their lives to maintain our freedom. We need to thank those who have rebuilt our country and our sense of democratic freedom after attacks have been made.

Right now, the world is under attack by an autocrat in Russia who has ruthlessly invaded the Ukraine and who threatens to use nuclear weapons if anyone tries to stop him. Here at home, we are threatened by an autocrat who has denied the legitimacy of our election process (without any proof) and who has instigated an attack on our Capitol. On a personal basis, we are being held up by a gun lobby who will not back off supporting selling military grade weapons designed for the mass killing of people.

It is the time for us to stand up and bring back sanity and compassion to our Nation and World.

Trying to Preserve a Little History

“Irrigation Flume Section”
Heatherwood Garden

Our neighborhood was sad to see the historic Selah Naches irrigation flume taken down. What is left is a scar along where the flume gracefully stood for over 100 years. It will take many, many years (longer than my lifetime) for the scar to transition to a natural vegetation state.

Several of our neighbors were able to get a section of the flume and preserve a little history in our gardens. At Heatherwood we will add additional trees and shrubs that will highlight and frame the flume segment. We also plan to add trees to shield the scar that remains in areas where we had previously created windows to view the flume .

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Goodbye …

“Selah Ridge and 1890’s Flume”
Heatherwood Winter

Our historic irrigation flume is no more. It saddens my heart. This week a construction crew started tearing down the flume to convert our irrigation source to a buried pipeline. One of the first things that attracted me to this location was the surrounding ridge and the historic irrigation flume background. Over the six years that I have lived here, there is hardly a day that goes by that I do not gaze upon the hill and flume. I start each day in my office, writing in my journal. I always turn to look out my window over the Heatherwood landscape and up to the flume and ridge. From our living room we look out over the patio again to the ridge and the flume above.

As we designed and developed our Heatherwood landscape, we created multiple view windows that framed the flume and ridge. Several of our garden “sitting rooms” faced the hills and flume. It was a wonderful “borrowed” background for Heatherwood.

Now the above portion of the flume is gone. We were lucky enough to talk the contractor into salvaging a small portion of the flume and bringing it down to our property. We will carefully place it and build a special garden around it. It will be a little remembrance of the area’s history and the special image of the wonderful background that use to be.

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An Achievement or a Mistake?

“The Vessel”
New York City Hudson Yards

This interesting piece of architecture captured my imagination when I started my walk along New York’s Highline. I had no idea of the background of this amazing structure, so a little homework was needed. The active sculpture is 16 stories high comprised of 154 staircases, 80 landings, and 2500 steps. The path to the top is a little over a mile. The creator, Thomas Heatherwick, said that his intent was to create a focal point where people can enjoy new perspectives of the city and one another from different heights, angles and vantage points.

At its opening dedication in 2109, the Vessel was deemed to be safe, able to carry 1,000 people at a time. However, since its opening four people have committed suicide. In August of this year, the 4th suicide occurred. The Vessel is now indefinitely closed.

Kinetic Architecture

“Abstract – The Shed”
Hudson Yards, New York City

Do you believe this monster really moves? The Shed is a multi-cultural, multi discipline center for the arts in New York City. It provides a venue for established and emerging artists to show and perform their creative endeavors. The image above is a face of a movable shell that doubles the space of the facility for large displays and performances.

Large wheels, I guess the diameter to be about 8 feet, move the Shed’s outer shell. It takes 5 minutes to fully move the shell in or out. See image below.

“The Shed’s Wheels”

When I first saw this structure, I had no idea what it was. I just thought it was a cool piece of architecture. When I had the chance, I did a little homework. It is an amazing application of a creative solution. To add a little creativity of my own, I created an abstract of the lines and reflections of the shell. Next time we are in New York, I plan to venture inside this amazing facility.

Almost Missed

“White Barn”
The Palouse, Washington

We were hot and tired after a morning photo excursion during a Palouse Photography Workshop with John Barclay. Driving along headed back to the hotel for a break and maybe a nap, I saw this lone white barn. We glanced back as we zipped bye the barn. “Should I stop or should we just go back to the hotel.” On I went, thinking, “I should have stopped, I should have stopped!” I dropped my ride partner off at the hotel and decided, I am going back. I am glad I did.

Lesson Learned: When I see something, STOP! It may or may not be worth creating an image, but at least the memory will remain.

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Enjoyment and a Little Sadness

“Double Weeping Cherry and Naches-Selah Irrigation Flume”
Heatherwood Spring

As I look over our Double Weeping Cherry, I enjoy its beauty against the surrounding hills and the old Naches-Selah irrigation flume. But my heart also saddens. We have received information that the flume will be replaced with a pressurized pipeline this winter if the funding is approved. One of the first things that attracted me to this property was the beautiful hillside with the historic structure hugging its side. The need for efficiency and cost prevails and the historic flume built in the 1890’s will see its last use through this spring and summer. I will do my best to record this last remaining section of flume with my camera to remind me of a bygone era.

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Our Home

The Capitol East Entrance
Washington, DC

The Capitol is the house of the United States Government. We elect our government; therefore, it is our house too. It deserves all of our respect!

This image was taken in mid morning on a beautiful and warm summer day. There weren’t many people wandering about. Most were looking for a little shade.

The following is from a little different perspective. I stand in awe every time I get close.

US Capitol East Entrance, SE Perspective

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