Mystery Remains

I found this skull a few weeks ago when hiking, and have some ideas of what it may be, but am not sure.  Any thoughts?  I will be talking to some experts this weekend, and will post an update then.

Update:  It's a bobcat!  I met with Patty Sun, an educator/naturalist at the Debs Park Audubon Center, and she confirmed it.  I left it with them and hopefully it will be put to good educational use. 


Goat Roast

This past August, my sister in law Marjory asked me to photograph her birthday goat roast in Albuquerque.  Not just the roast, but the goat slaughter as well.  I was a little trepidatious about witnessing the loss of life, but curious enough to partake. 

It was hot and dry out, and flies were numerous.  The slaughter was as kind and respectful as death can be, and the animal quickly turned to meat.  I won't go into too much detail, because Marjory wrote a great article for Modern Farmer about it.  They were kind enough to use some of my photos, and some of the out takes are above. 

How to Roast a Goat, Modern Farmer



New project

I have long been enamored of textures and gradations in nature, and been especially drawn to the dry, grey grasses on the hillsides of LA.  They fade from green to brown to silver through the seasons, and when the rains come (fingers crossed), the green slowly creeps back in. 

This weekend I set out with my camera to try to capture the mass of texture made especially evident by our current drought.  I was traipsing through the rough grasses, off the official trail, and kept finding paths made my non-humans.  These little tunnels were well worn and barely big enough to fit the width of my foot.

So often we think about how we humans use space, but rarely do we consider the animal experience of the spaces we create.  They adapt, and make it their own, but I find their subtle choices interesting.  It is mostly in the overgrown areas that their paths are evident -- where the landscape is soft enough to absorb their impression. 

This is the start of a project -- I will continue to observe and take pictures of the evidence of non-human patterns.  The pictures so far are from my favorite hiking spot Debs Park.  It's a small pocket of wild in the middle of the city.  I've seen lots of rabbits here, heard coyotes yapping, and now there is evidence of a bobcat in the hood.

So much of modern landscape architecture is about creating sexy, sleek environments and I sometimes feel like I am in the wrong program because I have very little interest in them.  This weekend reinvigorated my sense of what I can do, though.  It's my intention to be more aware of how our space is indeed shared, and we humans are not the sole caretakers, and to design with that in mind.

In case anyone is curious, my camera of choice here is my Rollieflex twin lens.


Wild LA

I hike in Debs Park at least once a week.  It's a small slice of wild in LA, and provides me with the chance to observe nature and have quiet moments to myself.  That being said, it is often buzzing with families, dogs ranging from chihuahuas to deerhounds, and exercisers blasting their Beyonce from their phones. 

This week, news was released that a bobcat has been spotted in the park.  I know I will most likely never see it, but I will be keeping my eyes peeled for any trace of the beast.  

Here are some of my phone photos from my hikes.  The sunsets never disappoint!

Typical dreamy sunset.
The pond at sunset.
A momentary pause on the path reveals these treasures.

A tree turned altar?  Guadalupe was carved farther down the trunk.
Foggy winter morning walk.
More fog that lifted as the sun rose. 
Sunset on Christmas.



I came across this little altar during my hike the other morning.  As I leaned over to stretch at the top of the hill, a feather caught my eye.  Walking up to it, I saw all of these beautiful objects lovingly placed -- I wonder over time or all at once, by adult or by child?  I'll bring my offering next time.


Gift Guide 2013, Part II

To set them apart from the rest, letterpress calling cards from Mandate Press. (photo)

For the stocking, matte nail polish. (photo)

For the chic minimalist, bronze necklace from Bario Neal.

For the perpetual hostess, Irish linen cocktail napkins
Whiskey  is always a good option to go with those napkins.

For the ever expanding library, books never fail.