Locked Out/In

Locked Out/In - 2009

Locked Out/In - 2009

The ambiguity of a locked door… Which side is out and which in? Am I locked out to protect what is in, or locked into my world. Or is what is on the other side locked out to protect and keep safe what is on this side? There must be something important behind that door, but I’m not sure I want to let it out… or to get in. Do you?

Carambola Ice

Carambola Ice - 2009

Carambola Ice - 2009


Here is a final image from the carambola still life series. It feels like ice to me.

It is interesting how such different interpretations can emerge from a series of quite similar photographs of the same subject. Work on the final images was started on different days and the result was determined in part by the strengths of each individual photograph — but also in part on the day’s mood and the path chosen for each at the beginning of my process.

Carambola Dream

Carambola Dream (2009)

Carambola Dream (2009)

Believe it or not, this too started out as a picture of a carambola — a single fruit on a marble slab.

But it is still there — its gentle curves and angular shapes, ripeness, tartness, splinters of color reflected and from within, and the smooth leathery feel of its skin.

Carambola Still Life

Carambola - 2009

Carambola - 2009

The carambola, better known as “starfruit” in the continental US (and sometimes called “five-fingers” in Trinidad and other southern Caribbbean islands), is tart and juicy, and ranges in color from a greenish yellow to bright orange. You can pick them fresh from the tree here in St. Croix, and we have a beach resort and a golf course named for the carambola.

The color, distinctive shapes and shiny, almost leathery texture of three ripe orange fruits sitting on a dark marble slab caught my eye.

Abstracts and Imaginary Landscapes

There is always a distinct tension for me between accessible realism, and the more abstract. By moving too far toward the abstract, there is a danger that the connection points for viewers get lost. The images in this post are part of a series of abstractions inspired by the brilliant color fields of Sandy Point and illustrate this tension.

Breaking Wave (Sandy Point - 2009)

Breaking Wave (Sandy Point - 2009)

I have read that there is a trend toward realism right now. Perhaps that is a response to economic factors, and what sells. Or perhaps it is something deeper, reflecting shorter attention spans, less time for reflection and contemplation, or a need for the familiar in a changing world — and a corresponding desire for art that is comfortable and accessible. If communication is the goal, perhaps a trend toward realism is a good thing. Any thoughts?

Lines in the Sand (Sandy Point - 2009)

Lines in the Sand (Sandy Point - 2009)

Guard Dog at Boiler Bay

I was working on a beach scene, when this little doggie popped into view. Well, I just couldn’t shoo him away, so I let him be the star!

Guard Dog at Boiler Bay - 2009

Guard Dog at Boiler Bay - 2009

Sometimes the unexpected can add a smile to the day.

Digital Art Goes Back to the Beach

Sandy Point National Wildlife Refuge is located at the southwest corner of St. Croix. It is a spectacular sweep of sand beach and Caribbean-blue water, and an important nesting site for the ancient-looking and endnagered leatherback turtle.

Sandy Point Peel - 2009

Sandy Point Peel - 2009

The leatherbacks come ashore well after dark to lay their eggs, and the baby turtles emerge from the sand just after dusk about 60 days later. Whether in the brilliant mid-day light, at dusk or on a moonlit night, the stark shapes and brilliant color fields of Sandy point are stunning.

(Contact the St. Croix Environmental Association for information on guided turtle-watch tours.)

Fort Christiansvaern, Take 2

Here’s a slightly different perspective on our old fort, all planes, shapes and colors. Just the picture for today. That’s all. Time to get back to the shoreline…

Fort Christiansvaern, take 2

Fort Christiansvaern, take 2

An Old Danish Fort

Fort Christiansvaern in Christiansted, St. Croix, is a relic of the long Caribbean history of plantations, sugar and slavery. One version of a part of that history is told in Buddhoe by Patricia Gill.

Fort Christiansvaern, Christiansted - 2009

Fort Christiansvaern, Christiansted - 2009

With its many planes, curves and layers, the fort is a photogenic landmark that lends itself to multiple interpretations. This is one of several new images that I am adding to my series on the old fort. See the earlier interpretations on my portfolio website. I’ll be adding this and other new images there soon.

In this view the American flag flies high and prominently over the reminder of the past. Perhaps we are proud of the fort’s history, or perhaps proud that we have risen above it. Or perhaps the flag just marks the fort as a symbol and claim of our nation’s “ownership” of the island. What do you think?

Mystery at the Water’s Edge

There is a story about zen master Shunryu Suzuki-roshi who was asked to summarize Buddhism in a single sentence. His answer was, “everything changes.” Where the sea brushes the shore is a place of constant change, and sometimes mystery – almost a metaphor for life.

Mystery at the Water's Edge - 2009

Mystery at the Water's Edge - 2009

This image was inspired by a spot along Davis Bay on St. Croix where the water had carved the sand into soft curves and mounds. That glowing green object held in the shadowed curve of sand emerged as I worked on this image. It had to be coaxed out into the open.

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