Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography

We welcomed winter

with 19 comments

We welcomed the first day of winter, December 21, by hiking along Panther Hollow Trail and Little Fern Trail at River Place. One stretch of Little Fern Creek widens into a natural pool, at the bottom of which sits a rounded basin in the bedrock that’s visible through the water. An adjacent sign says that people have assigned the name Story Hole to this area. What intrigued me there were the ripples on the creek, and I made an abstract portrait of them. In the center of the photograph you may be able to make out the rounded contours of the darker area that corresponds to the basin in the bedrock. The way the ripples created visual cells reminds me, albeit with different colors, of the way Gustav Klimt portrayed Adele Bloch-Bauer during his “gold period.”

I experimented with flash for some of my pictures. Unfortunately, for my purposes, that extra light revealed too many unwanted details of the bedrock and sediment and therefore detracted from the abstraction I was after. In the interest of geology rather than aesthetics, if you’d like a view that’s closer to what the scene “really” looked like, you can have it.

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Critical Race Trove From California District Tells Students How To Use Witchcraft On People Who Say ‘All Lives Matter.’ That’s the hard-to-believe-it’s-true-but-it really-is-true headline of an article discussing the many ways one California school district promotes the tenets of what’s been called “critical race theory” and “wokeism.” Proponents of that ideology often deny that schools are pushing it, but evidence speaks louder than sophist denials. The article includes links to many documents confirming educationists’ racialized orientation.

© 2021 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

December 30, 2021 at 4:35 AM

19 Responses

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  1. Actually I like both ways of looking at the subject.
    That article leaves me shaking my head. Yes, a good reason why many parents both in the States and in Australia, are taking the home schooling route.


    December 30, 2021 at 5:54 AM

    • I downplayed the more realistic view. It’s not bad, just less abstract.
      As for the article, my country got to the point last year where I could probably have linked to an equally egregious story every day. Ideology proved as contagious as the Coronavirus.

      Steve Schwartzman

      December 30, 2021 at 10:24 AM

  2. This is a wonderful effect. I didn’t capture it so well, but I did see it in 2017, in a shallow spot of Willow Creek; now we’ve both shown some ‘squared’ water. I do prefer your more abstract view, both for its aesthetic appeal and for its unusual nature.

    I wonder if the self-promoter in your previous post’s spam has a spell for eliminating woke-ism? I’d pay a few bucks for that if there was evidence it worked.


    December 30, 2021 at 6:25 AM

    • I like your notion of “squared” water (which tangentially and hardly surprisingly got me thinking of mathematical powers and the powers of mathematics). In this blog’s first year I was already playing with “cubist” water:

      Ripples in Waller Creek

      And I like the way you tied in the self-proclaimed spell-caster and -breaker of the prior post. Too bad there’s no simple spell to dispel the delusions of wokeism.

      Steve Schwartzman

      December 30, 2021 at 10:34 AM

  3. I liked that you included both the “real” scene and the abstract. The many shapes and colors of the cells is mesmerizing!

    I found it highly interesting to see the “eye” in the real image, and then to find many eyes painted in Klimt’s “Woman in Gold”. This after I watched a video last night on secret societies and witchcraft where the “eye” is symbolically front and center. I’m not sure I’m surprised by anything going on anymore.


    December 30, 2021 at 7:34 AM

    • You might say Mesmerizing is my middle name. In my reply to Linda a few minutes ago I linked to a somewhat similar picture from way back in the early days of this blog in 2011.

      In the second part of your comment you’ve given us an eyeful—of insights, that is. I hadn’t consciously linked the “eye” in the creek with the many stylized eyes in Klimt’s painting. The last time we visited New York, in 2019, we went to the Neue Galerie to cast our eyes on the famous painting.

      As for witchcraft, a lot of traditional cultures believe in ‘the evil eye”:

      Steve Schwartzman

      December 30, 2021 at 10:55 AM

  4. That is a beautiful abstract, Steve.

    Lavinia Ross

    December 30, 2021 at 9:38 AM

  5. Wonderful patterns, a bit like the ones Gustav Klimt used when he painted fabrics.

    Robert Parker

    December 30, 2021 at 10:57 AM

  6. Great picture !


    December 31, 2021 at 8:37 AM

  7. That’s a lovely abstract!


    January 1, 2022 at 10:31 AM

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