Just like the old days...

 Some favorites from the past month of shooting the Fridays Rainshadow project. 

As the desert heats up I find myself heading out later in the day and shooting after the sun goes down. Just like the old days..




Work a little quicker...


Its some time ago now when I stopped 'waiting' for the light here in the USA and here's why.

After driving around all day looking for things to photograph you are tired and loosing motivation- You set up and wait for the light by which time you have usually changed your mind about the shot- Then light arrives and is not what you thought so now you are in a right mood and you have wasted a whole day- Or, you turn around for a moment to check that stray dog is not going to bite you and when you turn back the magnificent light has vanished and you have wasted a whole day.

Chasing the light may be a little more stressful, but its often a lot more rewarding. All you need to do it work a little quicker...


Nowt there..

Sadly no poppies this year in the Antelope Valley sadly due to lack of rain and snow. But still a beautiful place to visit, peaceful and still (although often very windy).

The quest continues...


What remains.

 It had been five months since I photographed parts of the Bobcat fire aftermath and I was intrigued to see how the landscaped now looked.  

Sadly, despite the grey ash now replaced with small flowers and grasses due to the irony of now fertile ground, the trees and shrubs were very much still black and very dead. For some reason I thought the trees may somehow survive and blossom once again.  (Something I have seen happen with Joshua trees. )

It seems fitting, given the name, that the once lush green area around the Devils Punch Bowel in the Mojave now resembles a hellish looking landscape of burnt black trees. 

I felt pretty sad during my time there, but felt it important to record what was in front of me. 

April 2021


Hundreds of years a go a man made a box with a hole in it...


Memories of an Unblinking Eye.

 Its been a real joy doing night visions on film again and a real throwback to the early 2000's and my first book Night Vision- Intimacies of an unblinking eye..

Due to the lack of sensitivity from film exposures are much longer. But in those minutes, rather than seconds with digital, more things can happen and with that comes a greater sense of achievement. 

This diner in Victorville CA was a real treat and shot just before they opened.



Just add Water.


Just Add Water.

To the viewer it may seem that I just wander around with a big camera taking pictures (my wife's words).  But behind the image/s there is always a story of how each image, or an entire project, came about.  

The idea of Fridays Rainshadow came about completely by chance after a mountain drive and rediscovering a film camera  I had not used for 15 years. After what could be described as a desert epiphany, I began to research the Mojave Desert and discovered all kinds of interesting places, and areas I wanted to visit. As the project grew, so did my research and knowledge about this unique area.

As I told the tax man, as part of my research I was intrigued to watch, Just Add Water. A delightful film set in Trona, a place located in the Searles Valley in the greater Mojave area, on the fringes of Death Valley. Having been to Trona several times in the past, usually on my way back from Death Valley, I knew it only as a place you drove through, or stopped for gas. So I was interested to see how the film depicted the area. My memories of Trona were all but forgotten before watching the film, but before the end I was all set on making the 3 hour drive out there a few days later. 

What I couldn't get out of my mind was how badly the town of Trona was depicted. Surely the place could not be as bad as it looked in the movie. I certainly did not remember it being that bad... Well my friends, maybe a year of covid changed things, but,  I can say without a long afternoon shadow of a doubt, that Trona is actually worse than you can imagine. This place makes the Salton Sea look like it did before the flood (you might have to research that). 

I have always been fascinated by these places. But it does not come without an air of sadness that people choose, or have no choice, to live this way. Its so different from anything I know. But looking past the car wrecks and burnt out houses, the people I met were happy, content and loved living there. 

As the light faded and I hit the road, I saw the surrounding Death Valley in all its glory. And then I realized why you would choose to live there....