Post #3: A Treasury of Roy

I can vividly remember walking into the laundry room at my mom's house to meet my new puppy for the first time.  I was on a lunch break from a local supermarket and only had about half an hour to spend.  He was a pup of only a couple months in a crate, hungry, nervous, weary from a long day of car rides, and had messed on himself a little.  I was in love.  I immediately named him Roy.  He was mine.  And 13 years later, he still is.  

We started going on hikes and mini-adventures and his faith and companionship was remarkable from the beginning.  I have written it somewhere before, but he's the Chewbacca to my Han Solo.  As I've waded into deep and freezing waters to take pictures, he's repeatedly tried to follow.  He can't swim.  It was there, as he waited impatiently on the shore as I stood in fast, hip-deep water, that I first turned the camera on him and snapped a few portraitsI quickly realized he was an amazing subject.

As I changed formats and mediums and styles and approaches in my photography hobby, he has always been a constant.  I could have a lousy photography outing but a nice little portrait of him standing near me was always a silver lining.  It's now grown to the point that he holds perfectly still as soon as I raise the camera to my eye, and then as soon as he hears the distinctive shutter snap he saunters off resuming his thing.  I've accumulated a lot of portraits of him and began posting them years ago on Flickr (a photo sharing website for those not familiar).   I began posting weekly images of him under the cheeky guise of "Whippet Wednesday."  

In celebration of a Whippet Wednesday long overdue, and a belated nod to his recent birthday, I present you with a treasury of some of my favorite film images of Roy.  



Post #2: Samuel Boardman State Park

For almost as long as I've had a camera I've had a far-away longing for Samuel Boardman State Park.  Several years ago I drove through the park while en route to the Redwoods but never got a chance to actually stop.  Driving by however reinforced my presumptions: pure unadulterated beauty.  A 12-mile stretch of the most ruggedly gorgeous coastline you or any Hollywood cinematographer could ever imagine.  Jagged, vertigo-inducing cliffs ending abruptly at the surging sea and forested islands dotting each vista.  Remote sandy beaches with nary a soul to be seen.  I'm all about idyllic and this place is certainly that. 

Trouble is that it's one of those places that's just close enough to always be a lingering thought, but also just far enough that it sounds like a big pain in the ass.  It's as southern as Oregon gets.  So southern that I'm positive California daydreams of just reaching over and snatching it from us when we're not looking like the last Oreo in the package.  

But enough was enough.  With a few extra days off from work, some gasoline to burn, and a promising weather forecast ahead, I made the somewhat last-second decision to pack my camping gear and make the 12-hour round trip drive to camp in Brookings and  finally explore what I've wanted to see for so long.

Of course the promising weather forecast I had been counting on turned into a couple of miserable days of relentless coastal wind, the kind where just standing upright (and remaining so) is almost a workout on its own, and there was never a cloud to be seen aside from the mass that lingered dozens of miles out to sea that had no intention of making it my way.

But I hiked, explored, and admired the shoreline to my heart's content and still managed to expose several rolls of film despite the sub-par photography conditions.  I came away with some images I'm happy with, and I also came away with the conclusion that if it were any closer to Portland, say if it swapped places with Lincoln City or something, it'd be the most visited part of the state.  But it's not.  And maybe that's what makes it so special.

I already can't wait to go back and photograph more.  Soon is not soon enough.     

I'll leave you with some images.  Not many, but it's what I got.  And I'll need a little help from you after this first set.   

So here's where I need a little help.  I've got two similar images that I can't decide on.  As soon as I decide I prefer one, I switch to the other.  Maybe they both stink.   Which do you prefer?  If you don't mind, leave me a comment below...and be sure to put Samuel Boardman State Park on your list of things to see and do.  

    - Benjamin

Post #1: A Beginning

Is it too late to join the blog game or what?  As an unspoken rule I generally like to do things about four or five years after they're cool.  Mumford & Sons?  Sounds like a hit.  Breaking Bad?  Season One is in my Netflix queue as we speak.  Food carts?  Delicious.  Is performance fleece still a thing?  If it was cool in 2010 I'm all over it now.  So, on that note, I'm blogging.

Well, really, we'll see where this goes.  An old college buddy of mine, a friend the likes of which I've learned there are few in life, subtly reminded me the other day how I was once a burgeoning writer.  By burgeoning I mean wannabe, and by subtly I mean he voluntarily, without provocation, suggested I quit my day job and go write somewhere.  Anywhere.  

How's that for lighting a fuse?  

Aside from delivering my resignation at work, I took his words to heart more than he probably ever expected.  

Because I used to write.  A lot.  Loved it.  So much so that I walked away from college with a four-year degree in it.  But at some point I grew tired of my own voice.  Why?  Besides an absolute phobia of  pretentiousness, I'm not totally certain.  But I'm going to try and figure it out and I think the antidote to a twelve year bout of writer's block is to just write.  So that's what I'll be doing here. 

Now, back to photography.  

Besides trying to write, I also aim to reveal all my new images on here as I get them.  So posted below are a couple from a recent trip to Cape Kiwanda.  The frothing ocean was terrifyingly wild that night and did not match the quiet pastels that lingered above.  I admittedly get too close to the water, but not this time.  

This winter has been pretty quiet for me photographically, with some personal recharging going on, but I have big expectations for the next few months as well as the rest of the year.  If you want to follow along fill out the subscribe via e-mail form in the upper right of this page and get notifications whenever I post new content.