Friday, September 4, 2009

One Way Only . . .

Going back to work after over three weeks away is sort of like heading into the deepest depths of Death Valley in August, where these photos were taken; a bone dry labyrinth where slow death by dehydration leading to disorientation and delusional dawdling in a morass of mirages is a distinct possibility. (Just kidding !) And speaking of rambling around in the desert, there is one person I know of who enjoys such activity immensely, and also not too far back posted about Death Valley. If you have a minute drop by and say "Hi" to Amy at Of Heliotropes and Silver Strings . . .
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In some odd places there are still traces of mines . . . I'd love to go crawl around in some of those holes . . . is that a Freudian thing ??? Trying to get back into the belly of Mother Earth ?
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And as with many things in life, there is only one way to proceed . . . which is forward. Going back is rarely and option, if not impossible. Only one way across this desolate moonscape . . . If my memory serves me well this was not far from an area in Death Valley called Zabriski Point, which if you recall is also the title of a film for which some of the music was done by none other than . . . you guessed it, The Grateful Dead.
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26 comments:

Wild Cayuse Creek said...

beautiful images.... Death Valley is one of the places I want to visit. I don't know why I haven't. It isn't that far away.

Owen said...

Wild Cayuse, wow, that was fast ! Death Valley is well worth a trip, I'd love to go back and do some some more extensive exploring. Just take plenty of water...

Arnaud said...

Owen, any space left in your luggage ? I can be small and as a caver can go through small holes ! ;-)
I would like to go there ! In fact, there are so many places I would like to see... ;-(

Anya said...

AMAZING shots,
so peaceful in black/white :))))

Lydia said...

These shots are very special, Owen. I think that Ansel Adams would have been impressed!

Does anyone else see a little face in the "one way" shot? It's in a little dark hollow to the right of where the wall changes from light to shadow. Probably a kid, with an impish wisp of bangs on his forehead...

Adam said...

Funny you should say that Owen - it is pouring with rain in Paris today!

Bill Evertson said...

Great shots. The top one has a look of waves on a stormy ocean. Must have water on the brain because earlier this summer I was photographing tissue paper that gave me the same feel.

Nathalie said...

Magnifiques photo N&B. Et le "one way" sign est fabuleux. Pour sortir du désert, quel est le way forward? Es-tu certain que c'est par là ? Et si c'était un mirage ? Et si un vautour avait inversé les panneaux exprès, pour mieux dévorer ta carcasse desséchée dans quelques jours? J'en frissonne.

Allez, there's only one way: forward. Just wait another 10 months and summer will be round the corner :-)

Jessie said...

Gosh...what a dramatic post! I hope your back to work week is going well! :)

Sharon McPherson: AUTHOR / ARTIST said...

Wow! I like the last photo - seems sureal, to see a road sign at that point in the middle of nowhere.

magnoliaamber said...

Hillarious!
And the black and white tone somehow gives misty aura..

TechnoBabe said...

Your photos give Death Valley a mystique and beauty.

louciao said...

I remember seeing Zabriskie Point (the movie)and my reaction was pretty much WTF? (although I don't believe that terminology was quite as much in vogue at that time as it is now.) Probably more like, "Far out, man!"

I like how the b&w adds to the starkness of the landscape in your photos. Harsh, unforgiving, yet beautiful in its austerity.

Where's Saj...I feel a terrible thirst coming on after this viewing. I'm serving blueberry beer from the Pumphouse Brewery tonight.

louciao said...

PS. Saj has been indiscreet in my studio!

Steve said...

Wow. In black & white Death Valley looks like a glacial snowscape... can't feel the heat at all.

Roxana said...

breathtaking! only film can do that, the last picture i mean...

Laurie said...

Superb photos by a master! Wonderful stuff, Owen,
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Loulou said...

Beautiful, waouh!!!! The last shot is stunning...really...

ps - thanks for all your comments here and there, a little more than busy since I am back in Delhi, give me three to four more days and life will be balanced again, well I hope.
Take care and please say hello to your primary 3 passions ;-)
loulou

robert said...

Been through a desert on a horse with no name and still would return yesterday if possible.

Wishing you an 'oasis of weekend'.

Owen said...

Oh you good people are too kind to this lonesome traveller...

Thank you Robert for reminding me of that beautiful tune, been through the desert on a horse with no name... I used to spend hours strumming that one on the guitar

Loulou, it is always a pleasure to drop by your place, may balance find you, and I shall say hi to a certain frog and tadpoles... :-D

Laurie ! I hope all is going ok with your new surroundings, that your knee is behaving itself and the driving not too strenuous. Just posted some cemetery photos with you very much in mind...

Oh Roxana, what I wouldn't give to do photos full time, and a large format loaded with b&w would be part of my toolkit for sure, and freedom to travel, to places like Romania to meet the odd wonderful bloggers from around the blogosphere...

Hey Steve, funny, when I stare at these photos long enough I can almost see the heat waves shimmering again like they did when I was there... one of the hottest places on Earth...

Owen said...

Louciao, I'm afraid you're going to have to head out to NZ and drag the Saj out from under whatever barstool she's fallen by and get her over here to Paris with you, and we can all go out and have a drink and discuss desert landscapes and their influence on sheer thirst... In the meanwhile, hope you are painting up a storm that will cause some rain to fall in these dry parts !

Techno, the mystique is all natural there, these photos only give the slightest hint of it... do go if you get the chance

Magnolia Amber, I do believe you have pulled a pun on us ! I'm chuckling... hill-arious... looks like some folks had been digging for gold in them thar hills...

Hi Sharon, very surreal indeed. Admittedly I took the photo from the edge of a road, but the sign was sort of far off even so, very bizarre.

Jessie, thank you ! As for work, I'm surviving, barely... :-D

Chère Nathalie ! Si ce n'était pas un vautour qui aurait tourné le panneau, c'était peut être le cousin géant de ton praying mantis d'hier... cours vite s'il est toujours sur ta table !!!

Bill, cool, I'll bet with tissue paper and some papier maché one could make a good replica of Death Valley landscapes...

Adam, I don't know about where you are, but here in the Oise we sure needed the rain ! That's why I did this post, to invoke the rain gods to come quickly... and they did !

Hey Lydida, wow, no one's compared me to Ansel anytime recently... he's another one of my heroes... so thank you from way down deep. And now that you mention it, yeah, I do see the face, although it took me a while to spot it, I was looking for something bigger... but it is very visible now that you've pointed it out. Almost a punk hairdo... no ?

Anya, hi there ! Thanks ! Very peaceful indeed...

Hey Arnaud, it would be a great pleasure to have your company on a trip like this... maybe someday the gods of travel and blogs and photos will conspire to bring us together... if it can be imagined, it can be accomplished, eh ?

@eloh said...

Beautiful, the black and white does odd things to the sting of the desert.

That "hole" could be the Lost Dutchman Mine"!

The Sagittarian said...

That last photo almost looks like an iceberg!
I haven't been under a barstool incidentally...have been dealing with vets and broken cats and stuff.
But now youo mention it, I AM thirsty...(or is it Frid'y?)

jeff said...

Ciao Owen ! Ces photos sont d'une beauté à couper le souffle... lequel souffle doit être sérieusement épprouvé à la traversée d'un tel lieu !
Comme mes "collègues", j'apprécie particulièrement la photo "One way" ! A se demander si ce n'est pas une plaisanterie de celui qui l'a posé là ! ! ! Mais je crois bien que non ! Un panneau fort utile serait d'annoncer à l'approche de "La Vallée de la mort", "Pensez à emporter une bonne quantité de tisane ! Il n'y aura pas de points de ravitaillement tout au long de la traversée" ! Ils auraient pû y penser quand même ! Je trouve ça aberrant !
Tes photos en B/W font tout de même froid dans le dos et ailleurs... d'où le fait d'avoir donné un tel nom à un tel lieu !

Ciao pixelpote ! Prend soin de toi ! Take care ! Mais tu es vraiment pénible de m'obliger à déchiffrer ton texte englais !...:-)))
A +...!

AmyR said...

Thanks for the mention Owen! :D I always enjoy new company coming my way. I hope going back to work hasn't been too terrible!

Phil said...

j'étais là bas il y a quelques jours...paysages fantastiques