Fine Art Images from the American Southwest

Tag: Mountains

Equinox, Wildflowers, Fine Art, New Mexico. 09-21-2022

A flashback photo you may remember from a rainy day in the high country of northern New Mexico.

Wildflowers for the equinox in the Valle Vidal, NM
Colors of Autumn in the high country, NM


Taos Artist Combo II Exhibit/Sale
11 Taos Artists/ 3 Days
Stables Gallery/Taos: Sept. 23-25, 11-5 pm
Photography, pastels, prints, and paintings, direct from the artists

*Frederick Aragon *Bill Davis *Audrey Davis
*Gene Gray *Sara Jean Gray *Celesa Lucien
*Rob Nightingale *Margery Readin
*George Schaub *Geraint Smith *Doug Yeager

Opening Reception: Friday,
September 23, 4-7 pm
The Stables Gallery is located at:
133 Paseo del Pueblo Norte Taos, NM 87571

Below are three of the many fine art prints I will be showing in the fall equinox show “Taos Artist Combo II Exhibit” at the Stables Gallery in Taos.

Fine art print Buffalo Eye
Fine art print, “Buffalo” American Bison

Shrine, Los Cerrillos
At the shrine in Los Cerrillos, NM

Morning fog in the valley
Morning fog in the valley, NM

If you are fortunate to be in Taos during the above dates, I hope you will stop by the Stables Gallery to see all the work and say hello! I’ll look forward to seeing and meeting you.

As always, thank you for looking. G

Thunder and Lightning, Portrait, August 10, 2022.

Greetings from San Cristobal and beyond. We’ve had some violent thunder and lightning this last week. While we are grateful for the moisture here, there have been tremendous flash flooding and washouts. Particularly in the Mora Valley following the Calf Canyon/Hermits Peak fire this spring.

I could see this thunder and lightning event building from our house. I had to go for a closer look. Not far, just a few miles south, there are wide open vistas of the Taos Valley Picuris, and the Truchas Peaks and beyond. I got lucky with one shot out of the car window. I wasn’t about to get out and set up a tripod. If you think about it, standing out in the rain, I’m the tallest feature in the landscape, hanging on to a metal tripod. Yes, I have a 40-year-old tripod, its metal. A man was struck by lightning during a previous storm this week in Taos. I wish him and his family well.

Here’s what I captured from the car window.

Thunder and lightning storm with lightning strike
Thunder and lightning storm, Taos, NM

Last week we visited my long-time friend and hiking partner I met when I moved to Taos in 1988. Harry and his wife Noreen invited us to their home for lunch. We hadn’t seen them since Harry’s art show in Taos. That was before covid. It was a delightful lunch and a great time visiting them at their home across the Rio Grande Gorge. Following lunch, we sat outside in the shade where the breezes came gently off the canyon rim. Harry sat next to one of his paintings, and we all noticed what a timely portrait it would make.

And the portrait. Harry is 92.

Harry Vedoe, artist and good friend.
Harry Vedoe, Danish/American artist and good friend, Carson, NM

Coming up in September and October!

If you are fortunate to be in Taos on the weekend of September 23-25, 2022, please visit the stables gallery, where I’ll be exhibiting my photography with a group of other artists. The show will consist primarily, of new black and white images, with some of my iconic images alongside.

The Stables Gallery is located at: 133 Paseo del Pueblo Norte Taos, NM 87571

On October 7-31, 2022, I will have a solo exhibition of my Sculpture and Photography, all new work, at the Bareiss Gallery here in Taos


Here’s the advertisement for the exhibit and the details.

Geraint Smith Exhibit at the Bareiss Galley Taos
Exhibition at Bareiss Gallery, Taos, NM

As always, thank you for your support, comments and compliments. Have a good week. G

Monsoon Rains, Fog, Rainbow, August 3, 2022

Greetings from San Cristobal and northern New Mexico, where the monsoon rains are abundant this year.

The monsoon season started early this season, and the forecast is for it to last through August. With a touch of shameless self-promotion, I can honestly say, now is the time to sign up for a photo tour/workshop.

Monsoon rains, northern New Mexico
Monsoon rains, over the Sangre de Cristo mountains, northern New Mexico.

I made a drive on a local backroad yesterday, and a pleasant drive it was. I shot some pictures of the dead and standing trees on the hillsides. The trees are remnants of the Hondo Fire that burned the area in May 1996. It’s a place of great solitude for me and a different kind of stark beauty. Despite the fire, the hillsides look very lush and green

Tree in fog, Lama NM
Tree in shrouded in fog, Lama NM

And a rainbow this week from our field in San Cristobal, NM, is my favorite view of rainbows, second only to Taos Mountain. I only have to step outside the door and look. Things got a little wet after this moment.

Rainbow San Cristobal NM
Rainbow from our field, San Cristobal, NM

As always, thank you for looking. Have a great week. G

Taos Mountain, Orilla Verde, Clouds, July 27, 2022

Taos Mountain beckoned across the meadows yesterday on my drive home. It always does! The lighting was intensely bright on the rocky outcroppings and peaks. It looked like snow had accumulated or, perhaps, hail.

Earlier, my son, Dylan, and I drove late afternoon along the Rio Grande south of Taos. The elusive wildlife was probably due to the number of paddlers on that stretch of the river. There were many areas of washouts along the roadside, evidenced in the very muddy river. Dylan spotted a Great Blue Heron who wasn’t having much luck fishing in the brown waters.

We drove on to the Taos Junction Bridge, where I shot the last image, in this post, of the headland that divides the confluence of the Rio Pueblo and the Rio Grande.

I’m beginning this blog at the end and winding up at the beginning.

I hope everyone is staying as hydrated and cool as possible where you are. If you enjoy the cool mountain air and a trip here appeals to you, join me on a photo tour/workshop in the high desert of northern New Mexico.

Taos Mountain storm in Black and white
Taos Mountain storm in black and white.

… and in color. I’m partial to the black and white myself.

Taos Mountain storm in color
Taos Mountain storm in color.

I shot the image below in the Orilla Verde Recreation Area The storm clouds were building. I suspect it looked like this yesterday before the deluge that washed out parts of the roads in the area. I exposed the image for the lighter areas of the clouds and picked up the little highlight on the green grasses of the bench. I lightened the shadow to bring out the other green hues on the hillsides and the rock faces. Moody, just like I experienced the scene.

Sky and Mesa, Orilla Verde, NM
The sky over, Orilla Verde Recreation Area, NM.

If you are interested in seeing more images of Taos Mountain or the Orilla Verde Recreation Area you can put these search terms in the search bar on the website.

As always, thank you for looking. Have a great week. G

Virga Rain, Pastures, and Buddha, June 29, 2022

Greetings from the beautiful San Cristobal and Arroyo Hondo Valleys this week. We have virga skies and verdant pastures following this year’s early monsoon season.

The rain stopped briefly after raining straight for 48 hours. The sun came out for a moment before it began again. I hadn’t been out very much over the last two weeks. Drawn by the light, I grabbed my camera and headed out. I shot this first image of the virga rain from the driveway of our house.

Virga, San Cristobal
Virga over the Sangre de Cristo Mountains, San Cristobal.

Within a few minutes after the first image, I hopped in the car and drove south towards Taos, where I would have access to a turnout and views across the Taos Plateau and the walking rain. You won’t find much about walking rain online, but the rain here looks like it is out for a stroll as it passes across the plateau west of Taos.

Walking Rain, Taos Plateau
Walking rain across the Taos Plateau.

A little farther south is the beautiful Arroyo Hondo Valley. As I descended the hill and rounded the curve, this scene appeared. I stayed here for about fifteen minutes before heading home.

Arroyo Hondo pasture and cattle
Pastures in the Arroyo Hondo Valley.

Sometimes all it takes is a brief moment outside to clear my head, watch the storms pass, and nature putting on a beautiful show.

Arroyo Hondo pasture and cattle
A broader view of the verdant pastures in the village of Arroyo Hondo

Within an hour, it was raining again, a torrential downpour with hail hammering on the tin roof and skylights. Lightning and thunder pursued, giving our old dog the tremors. A cheese treat with a cracker cured it. We woke up this morning to clear skies and more rain in the forecast. I’m in no way complaining here about the moisture we need it. See how green the landscape is, compared to a week ago.

This week’s final image is of the garden Buddha surrounded by marigolds Pami planted. I made a double exposure, one of the buddha and the other to blur the marigolds. The garden is loving the rain. It reminds me of Wales. Except in Wales, it would be raining for three weeks.

Garden Budha with marigolds
Buddha statue features again in our garden in San Cristobal.

As always, thank you so much for looking. Stay well, and I’ll see you here next week. G

A Solstice Moment, Wonderful Rain, June 22, 2022

Greetings from a rain-soaked solstice and the first day of summer in Saan Cristobal, NM

A hike in Plaza Blanca is a great place to witness a solstice moment. This image is from a photo tour in 2018. The solstice this year found me asleep in bed. The clouds covered the sun, moon, and this week’s planetary alignments yesterday morning. I slept well all the same.

Summer solstice Plaza Blanca
Summer Solstice, Plaza Blanca, Abiquiu, NM

There is a 12,000 feet peak in those clouds. Those two ravens know it. It’s great to know that the mountain peaks are shrouded in rain, clouds, mist, and not the choking fire smoke we experienced over the last two months. Today it has been raining for five hours straight. It feels a lot like Wales, where I grew up. Although in Wales, it would have been raining for three weeks straight.

Two Ravens
Ravens, and the invisible mountain in the rain.

In the garden, the Apache Plume plant is bedraggled looking. However, the raindrops hang suspended like tiny jewels. Click here to see a picture of an apache plume plant growing from a rock in Plaza Blanca.

Apache Plume
Apache Plume.

Lastly, I wanted to add two bonus images from the High Raod to Taos. I often photograph throughout the day, well past the magic hours. The shadows in this image aren’t there any earlier. I find lots of subjects deserving almost any time of day.

Saint Francis Mission Church
Saint Francis Mission Church, Ranchos de Taos, NM

In this image of the big doors at the mission church San José de Gracia de Las Trampas, I lay on my back and took two photos. I stitched them together to create this different composition. Visiting places as often as I do, I like to inspire myself to find new and different angles. That’s the beauty of being able to make return trips to become familiar with the locations.

San Jose de Gracia de Las Trampas
Under the big doors at San José de Gracia de las Trampas, NM.

If you are inclined to travel this summer, join me here in northern New Mexico for a private one-on-one photography tour/workshop. I’ll look forward to seeing you.

As always thank you for looking. Enjoy the weather where you are. I’m going for a walk in the rain. G

High Road to Taos, New Mexico, June 15, 2022

Yesterday I went on a trip with friends on the High Road to Taos. It was a lovely relaxing day with no schedule or plans except to have fun and make images.

We began our day trip in Ranchos de Taos and photographed the iconic Saint Francis Church. It’s easy to lose track of time when photo opportunities abound. When we final regrouped, we headed south, winding our way through the Rio Grande Gorge to Dixon, picking up the High Road in Peñasco, traveling on to Las Trampas, Truchas, then back to Dixon for a late lunch at the Dixon Cooperative Market and Cafe.

Saint Francis Church on the High Road to Taos
Saint Francis Church, San Francisco de Asis.

South through the Rio Grande Gorge brought us to the town of Dixon, where we found these two benches waiting for us in more ways than one.

Benches in Dixon, NM
Benches in Dixon, NM.
Bench back, Dixon, NM
Bench back detail, Dixon, NM.

After an hour of wandering around Dixon, we headed to the Picuris Pueblo, (still closed to the public) and on to the church of San Jose de Gracia de Las Trampas in Las Trampas, the ‘place of traps.’

San Jose de Gracia de Loas Trampas
The church of San Jose de Gracia de Las Trampas, NM.

Truchas is a twenty-minute drive south on the High Road to Taos and abounds with fascinating and quirky visuals. Truchas was the setting for the movie of the John Nichols, book Milagro Beanfield War, filmed on location in the mid-1980s and directed by Robert Redford. Below is the Truchas Mission Church, Nuestra Señora del Sagrado Rosario.

Truchas Mission Church on the High Road to Taos
Truchas Mission Church, Nuestra Señora del Sagrado Rosario.

The following few images are also located in Truchas, a short walk from the mission church.

House with TV antenna, Truchas, NM
House with TV antenna, Truchas, NM.
Hobby Horse
Hobby Horse in the cool shade of a portal on the High Road to Taos.
Ford F100, Truchas
Ford F100 in Truchas, NM.
Mobile Home, with antenna, Truchas NM
Mobile home, with tv antenna, Truchas, NM.

Before we began our trip, we visited Floras Valley Store in San Cristobal, where my friends came to meet me. I just had to show this sight to them.

Floras Valley Store, San Cristobal, NM
Floras Valley Store, San Cristobal, NM.

We ended a fun day and said our farewells back in San Cristobal. I closed my day watching the “Strawberry Moon” rising over Taos Mountain.

Full "Strawberry Moon" with Taos Mountain
Full “Strawberry Moon” with Taos Mountain, NM.

As always, thank you for looking. G

Lunar Eclipse, Fires, Photo Tour, May 18, 2022.

Greetings from San Cristobal under a full moon eclipse and what continues to be another fire smoke-filled week.

Last week’s lunar eclipse didn’t appear for me as we were socked in with extreme fire smoke conditions on Sunday. I kept checking throughout the evening to see if the moon was visible. At about 10:15 pm, I saw the moon after totality had ended. Although I’ve witnessed the eclipse many times over the years, it’s always fun to see it each time it occurs.

Lunar Eclipse, May 15, 2022
The full moon Lunar Eclipse as seen from San Cristobal, NM, May 15, 2022

The fires in the area continue to threaten our beautiful mountains and communities. The damage to our friends and neighbors, wildlife, and landscape is incalculable. Of course, the government will put a price on the whole fiasco, but nothing can return the place to its original beauty only time.

When the fire flared up in tremendous winds last weekend, I took a drive to take in the current situation. In the images below, I came across the cattle standing in this particular posture, as they have done for several days now. I knew they would add context to the scene with Taos Valley and the Calf Canyon, Hermits Peak Fire raging in the mountains south of Taos.

Cattle in the Taos Valley with the Calf Canyon, Hermits Peak Fire
Cattle in the Taos Valley with the Calf Canyon, Hermits Peak Fire

Cattle in the Taos Valley with the Calf Canyon, Hermits Peak Fire
Cattle in the Taos Valley with the Calf Canyon, Hermits Peak Fire

Back home later in the day, I watched the fire rage on, destroying more of our beautiful landscape in its path, creating these pyrocumulus clouds.

Pyrocumulus clouds from the Calf Canyon, Hermits Peak Fire
Pyrocumulus clouds from the Calf Canyon, Hermits Peak fire, NM

Thick fire smoke at 6:30 am from the Calf Canyon, Hermits Peak fire, settled in and around our San Cristobal Valley and across the whole region. The mountains in the background, two miles away as the crow flies, appear and vanish throughout the days.

Thick fire smoke from the Calf Canyon, Hermits Peak fire, NM
Thick fire smoke in the San Cristobal Valley, NM

Ok… enough of that. I’ll move on to another subject next week.

Below is a shot of the Saint Francis Church I stopped to visit with a client on a photo tour/workshop last week. The morning was cold and crisp. The light was pristine with clear skies, at least until after lunch. A good thing we choose the half-day morning trip.

Saint Francis Church, Ranchos de Taos, NM
Morning at the Saint Francis Church, Ranchos de Taos, NM

And before the wind came and disturbed my view of the lunar eclipse, it blew all the blossoms off the ornate crabapple tree in the garden. But not before this Swallowtail butterfly had its fill of the nectar. It was joined this day by thousands of honey bees.

Swallowtail Butterfly and blossoms
Swallowtail Butterfly with blossoms.

As always, thank you for looking, and for the wonderful comments and compliments. Please send good thoughts to those affected by the fire and those fighting it. G

Fire In New Mexico, May 11, 2022

Greetings from New Mexico, a fire-ravaged part of our most beautiful state.

Currently, in New Mexico, fires are burning out of control, devastating humans and wildlife, landscape, property, and the environment. This week I want to share a few images of the awesomeness of nature and the power of the fires burning. The fires are on the east side of the mountains from where I live, here in San Cristobal, and have destroyed whole communities of people who have been living here long before the pilgrims landed at Plymouth. The area burning is a favorite place of mine to visit and photograph. I’ve met many people there, and all are open and friendly as any of my immediate neighbors are.

I just spoke with a friend who evacuated to Santa Fe, NM. He says he is safe and doing well but has no idea the extent of damage or lack thereof to his family’s home and property. We hear stories like these often, wherever fires and natural disasters occur. This time it’s a little closer to home. This fire driven by high winds is relentless and impervious to anyone or anything in its way.

I’ll leave you with these three images I shot yesterday. I shot many more pictures than these. It was an awful and yet awesome sight to behold. Perhaps it’s time to take care of the environment better than we have. Maybe, nature, the climate and the world can’t afford our bucket lists and indiscriminate consumption. I love where I live. I will tread a little lighter on the land day by day.

Click on the image to enlarge. The first image is made from 15 images stiched together. The image is 8 feet wide.

Calf Canyon, Hermits Peak Fire, NM
A view of the Calf Canyon, Hermits Peak Fire, shot overlooking the San Cristobal Valley, NM

Calf Canyon, Hermits Peak fire in New Mexico
Calf Canyon, Hermits Peak fire here in New Mexico.

Fire in New Mexico
Looking south from Highway 522 towards Taos, NM

As always thank you for looking. G

Mobile Home, The Moon, The Birds, In a Window, On the Roadside

Greetings from northern New Mexico. A mobile home in our neighborhood (so New Mexico) with the moon rising over the San Cristobal Valley.

Mobile Home, moonrise
Mobile home full moonrise, San Cristobal, NM

And the next night from the driveway as the moon slinked over the ridge.

Full moon rise Sangre de Cristo foothills
Full moon rise over the Sangre de Cristo foothills, San Cristobal, NM

The birds I’ve seen the most this winter are always American Kestrels, and this year joining them en masse are thousands of Pinyon Jays. I have never seen so many Pinyon Jays. They are raucous and over the top loud. They devoured the birdseed in the feeders in no time at all. Usually, there is a handful. I’ve added a picture below of one individual.

American Kestrel
American Kestrel
Pinyon Jay
Pinyon Jay or as we like to spell it in New Mexico, “Piñon Jay”

I couldn’t resist the juxtaposition in a window in the photo below. Everything is for sale. I just take the photo.

Guadalupe Window
Guadalupe in a Window

Drive-by shooting on the roadside. I do this a lot. Many scenes look like this here in New Mexico. Someone deposits the sofa making it someone else’s problem. If it’s in good condition, it will probably find a home. The fate of the couch is now left up to someone else. The original owner has absolved themselves of any further responsibility and saved themselves the trash dump fee. So New Mexico!

Roadside sofa, New Mexico Style
Roadside sofa, (so) New Mexico style.

Let’s end with a tranquil scene at Williams Lake in the mountains close to where I live. Last year was the first time I didn’t hike to the lake. It is a favorite hike and will be on the hiking agenda again this year as soon as the snow melts.

Williams Lake in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains
Williams Lake in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains of northern New Mexico.

I made a print of Valley of the Gods.

Valley of the Gods
New Print, Valley of the Gods

Click here to go to the purchase print page. The print is large but I can print it smaller than the sizes shown.

As always, thank you for looking and for all the kind comments and compliments over the last few weeks. Until next week, have a great week. G