Friday, October 8, 2010

Favourite Photos, Part 2

I think this place is called the Cadillac Ranch. Some guy decided that, instead of trading his wife's car in on a new one, he'd just bury it ass-end up in one of his fields, near Amarillo, Texas. A compulsion was born, apparently, and nine luxury cars came to rest in this field, where they have been painted and re-painted by generations of grafitti artists. 

When I was a kid in North Texas, horny toads (or Texas Horned Lizards, or TCU Horned Frogs) were common. Now, I hear, they're pretty rare. This one was the first I'd seen since I was probably, oh, twelve years old. Found it by the road near Alibates Quarry National Monument, north of Amarillo, where we waited for a herd of cattle to clear the road.

Branson, Missouri is a pretty artificial place; kind of like Las Vegas, but with an overpowering aura of wholesomeness instead of a Sin-City reputation. (Plenty of sinning goes on there, I'm sure, but unlike their counterparts out west, they don't brag about it.) Everything in town is glitz and mock-hick glamour, from the traffic jam on the one main road to the giant theaters showing slicked-up down-home artifice. But it is possible to find some nice scenes there, as in this shot of one of the several lakes around the town.

This is the headwaters of the Rio Grande River, near Creede, Colorado, taken when I was driving out to California to tour the Redwood Forest with my son. I really like the mellow look of this picture. It looks like a late fall or early winter scene, but was actually taken in late May 2006.

I'm sure everybody who's ever gone through this tunnel in South Dakota has stopped to take this same photograph, but I really like the way the tunnel frames Mount Rushmore. I read somewhere that the road was oriented toward the sculpture expressly for that purpose.

This was taken on the Michigan shore of Lake Superior. Put on a recording of "The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald" and study the colours in the sky and water.

I have half a dozen pictures of the Mackinaw Bridge. I'm not sure which is my favourite --- it's a beautiful bridge in a beautiful setting --- so I just picked this one to represent the whole bunch.

I think it's the pattern of the clouds that makes this picture so attractive to me. It was taken in January 2008 near Fort Pickens National Monument, on Pensacola Bay. It was my first time on the Florida Gulf coast since I was too young to remember, and I was impressed by the white sand and the isolation of the place. (The beaches in Fort Walton, where I stayed that night, were all footprint-covered; here, it was almost completely untouched.)

When I was in Italy in the mid-1980s, I sat at a table in Piazza San Marco, in Venice, and got quietly drunk on two bottles of wine. I took a picture of my feet. Ever since then, I've taken pictures of my feet for what I call my "Feet On The Ground" series. This one, in Fort Walton Beach, Florida, I happen to like for the contrast of black jeans and shoes against white, white sand.

I think this may be one of my favourite sunset pictures, taken from the same spot as the previous picture. 

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