Fine Art Images from the American Southwest

Tag: San Cristobal

Northern New Mexico, Moonrise – 11-29-2023.

Greetings from San Cristobal, in the beautiful mountains of northern New Mexico. This week a few moonrise images from around the area.

Below is one of my favorite peaks in northern New Mexico, and the subject/location for photographing the full moon rise.

A northern New Mexico moonrise
Moonrise, Vallecito Peak, Northern New Mexico.

Horse and moonrise Arroyo Seco, NM.
Horse with moonrise Arroyo Seco, NM.

I haven’t been to the Bosque del Apache NWR in a few years, preferring instead to make the shorter drive to the Monte Vista NWR in southern Colorado. I was pleased to see this image below, a reminder of the peace and tranquility experienced in the early hours at the Bosque del Apache.

Bosque del Apache moon and snow geese
Moonrise with Snow Geese, Bosque del Apache, NM.

Ladder to the moon, Toas
Ladder to the Moon, Taos, NM.

As always, thank you so much for all the comments, compliments, and well wishes for a speedy recovery. Have a great week. G

First Snow, Winter Flashbacks. 11-22-2023

Greetings from San Cristobal, NM, and a Happy Thanksgiving. This week we had the first snow on our local peaks and in the valley.

Not too much snow. It’s a late start to winter where we are this year. I see from our weather forecast that temps will drop next week. It’s all good for me as I’m in a foot brace again on my right foot this time, and with my leg elevated, I still have a lovely view out the windows and from the deck.

This was the scene from the kitchen window this week after the clouds lifted, leaving a few stragglers behind to fill in the little valleys.

First Snow San Cristobal
First Snow, San Cristobal.

With my right leg elevated, I’m revisiting the archives again. Pretty much a repeat of last February, when my left leg was elevated. This time next year I look forward to hiking up and down the hills in the first photo.

Early snow, Taos
First snow, Taos, 2011.
Great Blue Heron and Mallards, Rio Grande, Pilar
Great Blue Heron and Mallards, Rio Grande, Pilar, NM.
Red-winged Blackbirds
Red-winged Blackbirds, Arroyo Hondo, NM.
Horse, Ranchos de Taos
A horse taking shelter in Ranchos de Taos.
Vintage truck in the snow, Taos
Vintage truck in the snow, Overland Ranch, Taos.

Lastly, a picture I came across, edited on my iPhone, from last year.

Church window and adobes, Colorado
Church window and adobes, Colorado.

As always, thank you for looking. Happy Thanksgiving. G

A Golden Eagle. A Leaf. A cloud. 11-15-2023.

Greetings from San Cristobal, NM. This week a Golden Eagle in flight. A lone cottonwood leaf and an unusual cloud formation over the San Cristobal Valley.

Golden Eagle in flight, southern Colorado.
Golden Eagle in flight, southern Colorado.

There’s a little wetlands in Taos I often take a walk there. This cottonwood leaf, bigger than my hand, was asking to be photographed. I was happy to oblige.

Cottonwood Leaf and a sun star
Cottonwood leaf and a sun star

The cloud below screamed out for a picture. It first appeared much like any other lenticular cloud forming, but quickly grew a tail. Moments after, just like that, it became one with all the other particles.

Cloud formation, lenticular
Lenticular cloud formation.

I was sure it was going to become a Bottlenose Dolphin… almost!

As always, thank you for looking. Have a great week and if I miss you next week, Happy Thanksgiving. G

Solar Eclipse, Aspens, Autumn Continues. 10-18-2023.

Greetings from San Cristobal in northern New Mexico. This week, the solar eclipse from the deck. Our perspective at this latitude gave us 80% coverage. We could have gone to Albuquerque for totality but decided to put our feet up, play with the dog, shoot a few pictures, and save on a tank of gas. The photos below were shot using a tripod with a Sony camera and lens. I purchased a couple of pairs of eclipse glasses that worked very well. They’ll come in handy for the total eclipse next April. I hope you saw the solar eclipse where you are.

Solar eclipse, October 14, 2023, San Cristobal, NM
Solar eclipse, October 14, 2023, San Cristobal, NM.

In the image below, I opened up the exposure to get the clouds that were surrounding the event. There is some refraction from the use of two neutral density filters but you get the idea.

October 14, 2023 solar eclipse. San Cristobal, NM
October 14, 2023, solar eclipse. San Cristobal, NM.

The aspen groves continued to delight with colors at their peak in many areas. There is still a lot more peaking to come. I’ll be on a five-day photo tour during the coming week. It’s safe to say I’ll probably post more images.

Aspens sun star, New Mexico
Aspens and a sun star, Hopewell Lake, New Mexico.
Aspens near Hopewell Lake, NM
Off the beaten path near Hopewell Lake, NM.

No trip in the area is complete without a stop at the Red Barn. It was a beautiful sunny day in the San Luis Valley, however, the barn looked a little forlorn later in the day under the brooding sky. I plan to keep documenting it until…

Red Barn, San Luis Valley, Colorado
Red Barn, San Luis Valley, Colorado.

On the climb up the Cumbres Pass, the road crosses over the state line from New Mexico into Colorado. The picture below looked much more appealing in black and white during the midday sun. The type of clouds in the picture looked like this all day long. The Cumbres and Toltec Scenic Railway also crosses the pass. If we are lucky, we sometimes meet the train there.

Black and white near the Cumbres Pass, New Mexico
Black and white near the Cumbres Pass, New Mexico.

We visit the location below numerous times throughout the year. Fall is my favorite.

Aspen grove and sky, Colorado
Aspen grove and sky, Colorado.

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

Summer Sunset, Salida Colorado, And More. 09-13-2023.

Greetings from San Cristobal, NM. This week I’ve included a late summer sunset with a rainbow in a super storm cloud.

Summer is almost over and autumn is upon us. The aspens and cottonwoods will shroud the landscape in a cape of gold, glowing against the blue skies in the pristine mountain light. At this time of year, the night skies are crystal clear. The moon, constellations, galaxies, and Milky Way light up the night sky like few other places on Earth. New Mexico will soon be a magic carpet ride into the throes of winter. It’s not too late to sign up for a fall photo tour.

The summer storm cloud picture below followed a week after my last post on the rainbows. Many pictures of this massive cloud were floating around on social media. Naturally, we are so fortunate where we live, that we only have to step outside into the garden for a spectacular view.

Rainbow storm cloud sunset San Cristobal, NM
Rainbow storm cloud sunset San Cristobal, NM

Last weekend Pami and I drove to Salida, Colorado to the fiber arts festival. Pami did some shopping for alpaca yarns and I took a few images walking down the side streets and dark alleys!

Kayaks, Salida Colorado
Kayaks, Salida, Colorado.

Just over my shoulder was an artist painting a picture of these kayaks. This was his working palette.

Painters Palette, Salida, Colorado
Painters Palette, Salida, Colorado.

Alley in Salida, Colorado
A dark alley in Salida, Colorado.
Honor roll wall, Salida, CO
Honor Roll Wall, Salida, CO.
Alley, Salida CO
Brickwork with peeling paint, an alley in Salida CO.

Looking down, watching where I put my feet, was all I needed to see that “Love is all you need”… and water and food and housing…!

Love is all you need!
“Love is all you need!”

It poured with rain over the last three days. It isn’t over yet. I had errands to run in Taos so I stopped by the Saint Francis Church in Ranchos de Taos to add another image to my reflection collection. As I’ve said before, “I can’t resist a puddle!”.

Reflections, Saint Francis Church, Ranchos de Taos
Reflection at the Saint Francis Church, Ranchos de Taos.

I went to a friend’s open studio last weekend and also got caught up on gallery visits, it’s been a while. I liked the vase of flowers and took a quick cellphone shot. After tinkering on a cell phone app I came up with this. Here’s another image I did using the “Formulas” app on my phone.

Vase of flowers in a Taos Studio
Vase of flowers in a Taos studio.

I got a number of print orders this week. I shipped this image of the Cliff Palace ruin in Mesa Verde National Park, Colorado to Florida. I printed one for myself to hang in my office. If you would like a print for your wall, message me here!

Cliff Palace, Mesa Verde, Colorado
Cliff Palace, Mesa Verde, Colorado.

I saw the scene below today on my drive home from town. This guy was trucking along the highway so I thought I’d catch a shot of him as he passed the flashing road work sign that has been there for three/four years. Road work? No problem!

Summer Road work rider
Road work? No problem!

Summer is coming to an end and colors are turning on the tips of cottonwoods and aspens. I still have dates available for private photo tours and workshops. Last year was outstanding. Let me know if you are planning a trip to the area and would like a personalized guided trip.

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

Super, Blue Moon Rise, San Cristobal, NM 09-06-2023

Greetings from San Cristobal, NM. This week the Super, Blue Moon Rise from the deck at home in San Cristobal. I said I would share the moon rise if the skies were clear. They cooperated fully, with the thin veil of clouds adding an air of mystery.

I’ll begin with the first glow I saw about five minutes before the moon appeared. It gave me time to adjust my settings and anticipate the next few shots.

Super Blue moon rise San Cristobal
Super Blue Moon Rise San Cristobal, NM

Full moon rising over the ridge San Cristobal
The full moon’s appearance over the foothills.

Super Blue moon rising San Cristobal
Moon and trees on the ridge.

Full moon over the ridge San Cristobal
Super, Blue moon rise, in all its glory.

Of course, every moon rise is a sight to see. I am always excited as the moon clears the mountains where we live. Also, there is nothing like having a bright moon that you can drive with your headlights off and see the driveway ahead and the whole valley beyond lit up. The upside is that it’s like daylight in the house, so no nightlights are needed. The downside, sleep may be elusive on such a night.

Moon
Full Moon.

The next full moon will be the Harvest Moon on September 29. Here’s a Harvest Moon nearly full with a rainbow for added glory. Read more here about the Super Blue Moon.

As always, thanks for looking and for all the comments and compliments. Have a great week. G

Taos Pueblo Visit. On A Street Corner. 07-19-2023

Greetings from San Cristobal, NM. This week a brief visit to the Taos Pueblo, the heart and soul of Taos, New Mexico, followed by two pieces from the “Intersections” series.

Standing the shade of the ramada/drying racks with a coolish breeze was pleasant, watching the as my guest took photos.

Click on the photos to enlarge.

Taos Pueblo ramada shade
Taos Pueblo in the shade under the ramada.

Taos Pueblo Mission Church of San Geronimo. The building had just received a new coat of adobe mud. Here is a look at the Pueblo North House in snow, BC (before covid).

Taos Pueblo Mission church of San Geronimo
Taos Pueblo Mission church of (St. Jerome), San Geronimo.

Below are two of the latest images from my ongoing, “Intersections” series. These vistas are vanishing fast. Every time I come across a unique location I make a panoramic image depicting its current status. In the first image, about a mile from our home, our little “Valley Store” on the corner of Camino del Medio and Flora Dr. is closed now. There is one consolation, the trailer is not for sale or rent, so it may be around for quite some time. Eventually, who knows what will happen? I think it is the uncertain future of the old places that intrigues me most. I think it’s important to document such scenes and only wish I’d begun sooner.

San Cristobal Valley Store.
Valley Store, San Cristobal.

Capilla de San Acacio, Road 15 and Road 12, near San Luis, Colorado. The resident greeter wandered up to say hello. If you look closely you can see him heading towards me in the first frame on the left and the last but one frame directly in front of me. It wasn’t much of a greeting. He walked around behind me, gave me the once over, and left the scene.

Old San Acacio, Colorado
Old San Acacio, Colorado.

As always, thank you for looking. G

Nature’s Fireworks, San Cristobal, NM. 07-05-2023

Greetings from San Cristobal, NM.

New Mexico, is not the fireworks capital of the universe but certainly the aerial bombardment capital of other projectiles. In the spirit of wanting to keep our dogs safe from audible shock treatment, I posted nature’s fireworks on Facebook yesterday, and it received a number of comments and compliments. Below is an expanded version of the post with almost all of the flowers I’ve shot in the garden this year to date.

Nature's fireworks, San Cristobal
Nature’s Fireworks, San Cristobal, NM

The first of four supermoons this summer looked splendid as it rose over the northern flanks of Taos Mountain, (Pueblo Peak) this week. There are two supermoons (one a blue moon) in August and another in September.

Supermoon rise Taos Mountain
Supermoon rise, Taos Mountain.

As always, have a great week, and thanks for looking. G

Planets, Crescent Moon, Sunset Clouds. 06-28-2023

Greetings from San Cristobal. On the evening of June 21, the summer solstice, the planets Venus and Mars showed up with the crescent Moon anchored by the sunset clouds. The beauty of this world is just outside the door and perfectly poised for our viewing pleasure. Franz Kafka put it more eloquently than I did.

“You do not need to leave your room. Remain sitting at your table and listen. Do not even listen, simply wait, be quiet, still, and solitary. The world will freely offer itself to you to be unmasked, it has no choice, it will roll in ecstasy at your feet.” Franz Kafka

Planets, Venus, Crescent moon
Crescent Moon and Venus.

Zoom in on this second shot to see planet Mars on the upper left edge of the picture. I didn’t see it with my eyes or through the lens at first. It was a pleasant surprise when it magically appeared (pardon me) out of the blue.

Planets, Venus, Mars, Crescent moon
Planets, Venus, Mars, and Crescent Moon.

Sometimes I poke my camera through a window, a window in a building that I’ve passed many times, and find a surprise before me. A broken window helped me access this scene in a gas station on US 285 in Colorado. It reminds me of the upright piano in my grandparent’s house where I lived growing up in Wales. Our upright piano was more ornate, with two candle holders on either side. I was always encouraged to tap on the keys. My grandparents were very tolerant. I never did learn to play the piano.

Piano room,
Piano room.

This week, just outside the back door, the daylilies are blooming. On the other side of the house, outside the front door, the Apache plume has filled out and glistens in the morning sun. Here’s a shot of the Apache Plume in the afternoon rain.

day lily SC
Daylily shot and edited on an iPhone 13 Pro Max.

Looking outwards or looking inward, there’s plenty to discover. I find sitting still offers me a perspective that suits me well, plus I’m good at spending time doing absolutely nothing. Ask my wife!

As always, thanks for looking. G

Crescent Moon, Jupiter. 06-14-2023

Greetings from San Cristobal, NM, and beyond. To the moon and Jupiter.

It was 3 am this morning when I awoke. I went straight back to sleep! 4:20 am came and I was dressed in the dining room opening the window to view the crescent moon and Jupiter. I planned on getting up early to observe this celestial event but I’d gotten a tetanus shot yesterday and felt groggy most of the afternoon. I was going to set the alarm, but I fell asleep around 9:30 pm. Fortunately for my plans, all was well when I awoke. I was alert and ready to watch as the moon and Jupiter rose over the Sangre de Cristo Mountains, visible from our home.
The tripod was absent without leave! Buried in the back of the car, I think.
It was getting brighter by the minute so I took a pass on finding the tripod deciding to handhold the camera, bracing myself against the window frame. Fortunately, I’ve had experience with a missing tripod before, so I proceeded as I’ve done in the past and the image below came out just as I expected.

Crescent Moon, Jupiter, Early Morning,
Crescent Moon, Jupiter, 4:30 am today.

Looking through the viewfinder and the telephoto lens I was able to make out two faint moons of Jupiter. There are 95 known moons of the massive planet. I braced myself against the window frame again and shot a long exposure for the image below.

Crescent Moon with earthshine and Jupiter
Crescent Moon with Earthshine and Jupiter with two of its moons.

The silence before dawn is palpable. There’s a quiet hush that permeates everything. No dogs, sheep, roosters, or birds. At the stroke of some silent alarm, that only critters can hear, the whole valley woke up twenty minutes later. I now know who owns the barking mad dog!

A tree is still a tree, dead or alive. This tree has now gone. It vanished in a housing development. Goodbye tree.

Bare tree
Bare Tree, Taos, NM

As always. Thanks for looking. G