30 June, 2017

A Tall Ship's Long Shadow

Last week, I and a number of other Googlers answered the Call of the Sea, volunteering time, labor, and a bit of ingenuity to further the construction of the Matthew Turner, a historically-inspired tall ship being built in Sausalito.

At the time of our visit, the ship was already in the water, but was still lacking essential components like the masts and sails.

14 May, 2017

Portfolio Brainstormin'

As I've been working to update my portfolio for the first time since 2013 (when I took this picture), it's again occurring to me that the traditional sense of a portfolio as a collection of images-that-stand-alone doesn't really fit the kind of work I do. I feel like my dedication to storytelling and my focus on everyday moments are two distinguishing traits of my work. I try to get the aesthetics and style down as well, but I feel like they're less central to what I do.

But presenting those characteristics as part of an online portfolio still seems challenging. Among other things, phone screen aspect ratios make it challenging to lay out images and text together, such that the text is legible and the details of the image are still visible.

30 April, 2017

Timber, Day 2: Tetris

In the months that passed since the first work day, the entire demeanor of the terrain had changed. Drought, wildfire, and clouds of dust had been replaced by rain-induced landslides and a smattering of beat up, rerouted, and sometimes-closed roads.

As the dappled sunlight and scattered logs of the worksite came into view, I was also greeted by a miniature creek running along a 10-foot section of the gravel access road. Which, I remembered, was one main motivation of embarking on this adventure in the first place — Mark wanted to reroute that road, to reduce the impact of that erosion, and the tree was in the way.

27 March, 2017

A Glimpse Behind the Curtain (Behind the 25, part 8)

Evil lairs are always inaccessible. Impenetrable. And the constant distance creates an aura of mystery about the place. A handful of interactions grow into a half-true caricature of the people who actually reside there.

I had seen the view above many times over the years, and a similar kind of caricature had grown in my mind. In my imagination, the people working in the tower were sticklers for everything. They loved rules, order, and nothing else.

Finally, in 2016, I was able to take a glimpse behind the curtain. And I can say for certain that the notions that I had were not the full story, and they were not a fair depiction either.

Of course, I should have known that. As with any fractal, the traits that I came to appreciate about the pit marshals, the flaggers, and the safety crew also reflect the traits of the race control team itself. And vice-versa. This is definitely a race where the details show you the bigger picture. But the opposite is also true: the big picture can show you hidden details.