Children’s Hands at Play

The structures usefulness has long outlived its purpose and been abandoned by the military and turned over to the National Park Services. These concrete structures of fortifications imbedded into the coastal hillside against an enemy that never arrived, are now left to the elements and to the many mischievous hands at play in the garden of forgotten childhood.

Sounds of the ocean are muffled; a sea gull’s shrill can be heard off in the distance, piercing the sky as it fills the void. My footsteps upon the lose gravel disrupt the surrounding rhythms measuring the intervals of time.

Gazing in through the window frame, as it is absent of glass or the iron bars, I behold a chamber adorned by the hands of many, they who have left behind a trace of their presence by any means possible.

As the right leg climbs over the ledge of the window, I slowly begin my descent, intruding into a realm of unknown. Here where ubiquitous voices have sanctified impenetrable walls, now harboring the transgressions of our silence are the cryptic, enigmatic symbols. They, which converse in a mix of language, colour and texture, ever changing as transient voices add or subtract to the layers when their dreams collide.

Though surrounded by the ghosts lingering between the overlapping layers of indifferent pigmentations of colour, I find myself alone in this space, losing track as the hours pass with the swiftness of a sparrow.

I leave this place the same as I had found it, though richer for having stayed.


All digital photographs featured in this photographic essay were taken on April 17, July 8 and July 12, 2007, at the Battery Mendell, located at the Marin Headland in Northern California and under the supervision of National Park Services.


My first ‘Blog Award’

As I greatly value each ‘Follower’, I have also had the good fortune of establishing friendships through the private exchange of correspondence, which I hold very close to my heart. So when I received this heartfelt and sincere ‘blog award’ from Trudi at Two Dresses Studio yesterday, I was deeply touched and of course very surprised. A big thanks followed by a California style bear hug for Trudi.

In the 144 days in which I have been blogging, I have been exposed to some incredible artist and especially seeing things in a different perspective. This wonderful venue has added to my life with richness that cannot be measured in words and I know that as I continue my on-line presence, these mentally enriching and visually stimulating treasures, along with the friendships that continue to grow and blossom, will only become more priceless.

To select even a small handful of blog artists is difficult, especially since Trudi also honoured Donna at Layers, with whom I also share a wonderful friendship. There is Sophie who mentally stimulates me, or my friend of many years, Gun, along with Seth, an incredible altered book artist, and others who would all be well deserving of this award.

While I ponder further I wish to express that any award given is not about the award, but what one feels in the heart about that person, therefore I ask you to look at my blog roll and find a new contact that applies to you and make a new friend.

In the end I feel this is the best gift I can pass along, since it rewards you the reader and the new friend you have discovered.



Artist working with different kinds of medium experience from time to time different phases, adjusting ones visual compass, afterwards returning to any project left undone and seeing it with a new vision. As I have looked back these numerous weeks upon the body of my work, from writing, photography, collage, painting, or drawing, even my attempts at combining any of these expressive forms, it seems I am still seeking a different structure of expressing my thoughts or creative urgings, not having settled into a comfortable set of combinations with a predictable outcome.

A repetitious humdrum of beautiful patterns
Engine World, Emeryville, California
Digital duo-tone photograph, June 12, 2006

In reviewing my body of work, I look for a common thread that unites these various elements and forms in the end a unique composite identity by which I am identified and one recognizes the artwork as being of my hand.

Yet there is also the work that is an exploration of an idea or an opportunity, one that is infused with the influences of time and distance. What is created is not entirely ones own, rather the results of ones education, ones exposure to the ever changing surroundings. And though art is what we make it, it is still a reflection of what surrounds us.

My artwork is no different; it has not escaped these influences, despite my reclusive lifestyle.

The industrialization of the machine
Engine World, Emeryville, California
Digital duo-tone photograph, June 12, 2006

Like many of us, we remember one or two things with vivid detail going as far back as our childhood, even if it is just an image we remember. For me I recall when Mr. Crawford, my sophomore high school art instructor and for an additional two more years, showed us paintings by the Dutch artist Piet Mondrian. Unbeknownst to my instructor, the exposure to Mondrian’s work and class assignment that followed, which was to recreate our own version of Mondrian’s artistic style had forever a profound impact in how I viewed everything around me and how I would interpret what I saw in artistic terms.

The primary coloured squares and rectangles acting as weights to balance the vertical and horizontal black lines, intersecting into non-representational form in neoplasticism style of De Stijl, these areas became for me mathematical sequences with which to build upon a compositional idea that is then overlaid onto the sectio divina (Golden proportion).

March of the machine
Engine World, Emeryville, California
Digital duo-tone photograph, June 12, 2006

Though Mondrian’s compositions continues to have a considerable influence, it is occasionally draped by supplementary influences affecting my other work and as I photograph the rows and rows of transmissions, motors and other vehicle mechanics, I am reminded of Margret Bourke-White’s photography. In 1929 she started working for Fortune and a year later for Life magazine, when she became the first Western photographer allowed into the Soviet Union, capturing industrial images at a tractor factory in Stalingrad. Her career as an industrial photographer in which she captured the beauty and power of machines, later became known as the photographic essay technique.

1513.C — 3.0-1 Transmission
Engine World, Emeryville, California
Digital duo-tone photograph, June 12, 2006

While the many images I produced at this location are not consciously following in the style of Margret Bourke-White’s photography, a selection of images were treated as rich duo-tones with a slight overall softening to emulate a series of industrial photographs she took. The photographs I represent with this post, not only pay tribute to her body of work, but also remains true to my own vision and voice as a fine art photographer.

Engine World, Emeryville, California
Digital duo-tone photograph, June 12, 2006