Reclamation and Restoration

During Kathy’s and my week long venturings through western North Carolina, we stumbled into a 75-year old picker’s property.  Only in the south could one be driving through the most rural of areas taking in the autumn beauty one minute, and then a local resident invite us into his home after having only met us with 2 minutes of passer-by conversation.  Kathy and I stopped to consider photographing a stream, when Tom rolled up on a 4 wheeler to inquire what we were doing.  I said, “Just taking photos of this beautiful property and stream, assuming you are OK with it.”  His reply:  “Sure, we don’t mind that kind of thing around here.  So …… you like taking pictures?  If you’ll follow me up the dirt drive across the road, I’ve got something to take pictures of that you won’t find anywhere else.”  I needed no arm twisting!  We followed Tom up the mile and half driveway, only to stop at a shack with a tin roof.  He proceeded to tell us he had just moved into it 2 days prior after “remodeling it” (take a look at the 1st photo below, and tell me if you consider this a “remodel”).

Tom proceeded to share the history of this old 1904 homestead – originally with no insulation or running water.  Literally a shack.  He had retrofitted it with plumbing, insulated the exterior walls and rafters, ran electric, patched to roof, and made it livable.  He asked to show us the interior.  So Kathy and I obliged (with some reluctance).  Low and behold, we make our way into what felt like a dungeon entrance and the interior was amazing!!!  Not perfect, not without dust and a definite rustic feel, but amazing!  He had repurposed old flooring from a nearby abandoned school to make his wooden floors.  He took some of the remnants of rafters he replaced from this very shack and built his own amazingly beautiful dinner table.  It must’ve weighed 200 pounds!  He bought the beautiful sink from someone in CA, which had an epic story of its own.  The wood stove in the back of the kitchen was beautiful, and he used it to cook meals on as if he were living at the turn of the century.  Tom’s living room showcased an ornate wood stove, simmering with a slow burning fire that gave the home an invitingly warm,  “you’re home” feel.  I could go on and on.  He did ALL of this with his own hands, and it was literally a diamond in the rough.

Kathy and I are grateful for Tom inviting us, complete strangers, to share in his gem and allowing us to witness the outcome of his hard work and passionate vision!

Tom's Cabin

Tom’s Cabin

No Place Like Home

No Place Like Home

Retro Beauty

Retro Beauty

Roaring Fork Falls – Pisgah National Forest, NC

Roaring Fork is easily accessible.  A short, peaceful half mile walk along an old road bed to the falls capped off a relaxing and scenic day for Kathy and me.  Autumn colors were mostly gone, and is often the case in this region, the falls were surrounded by Rhododendrons (evergreen).  So in the end, I felt B&W was the best treatment for this image.

Roaring Fork Falls, Pisgah National Forest, NC

Roaring Fork Falls, Pisgah National Forest, NC

My Katie – Asheville, NC

Given Katie’s hubby (Evan)  is a photog, she’s an easy target …. rolls with the punches when asked to be photographed, and photogenic, too!  Love you Kate!

Katie #1 - Asheville

Katie #1 – Asheville

Katie #2 - Asheville

Katie #2 – Asheville

Posted in: Asheville, Family, People by Mark 2 Comments

Self Portrait

Taken near Roaring Fork Falls in the Pisgah National Forest, NC.

Self Portrait - Pisgah National Forest

Self Portrait – Pisgah National Forest

Western North Carolina Color #3 – Abstracts

Autumn abstracts of Aspen Trees are often very beautiful, and each is unique in it’s own right.  I’ve always wanted to do something similar with the southeastern autumn color-scape.  I hope you enjoy my attempt.

Autumn's Hospitality #1

Autumn’s Hospitality #1

Autumn's Hospitality #2

Autumn’s Hospitality #2

Western North Carolina Color #2 – Structures

This area of the Blue Ridge Mountains is replete with the beauty of decay … old barns, houses, and “Americana” at almost every hidden corner.  Per my previous post, leaf colors were unpredictable and  “hit and miss” (mostly “miss”, here).

Old Store in Luck, NC

Old Store in Luck, NC

St. Jude's Chapel of Hope - Trust, NC

St. Jude’s Chapel of Hope – Trust, NC

Barn near Trust, NC

Barn near Trust, NC

Ready for Winter

Ready for Winter

Tin Roof .... Rusted!

Tin Roof …. Rusted!

Western North Carolina Color #1 – Countryside

Kathy and I recently enjoyed a relaxing week in and around the Asheville/Burnsville area.  Both of us were fighting sinus and respiratory infections, so our exploration was limited to the “drive by” approach rather than hiking like planned.  We still made the most of it and enjoyed each moment and mile.  Special thanks to our buddy Carl for putting us up at his stunning cabin on the mountain, and for feeding and spoiling us!

2017’s autumn has been very odd – colors have been running very late, and there has been little rhyme and reason to the color change in terms of timing and elevation.  It has been a real crap shoot, but fall does not disappoint when you find her.

Highway 80 South's Color Palette

Highway 80 South’s Color Palette

Trout Stream - Burnsville, NC

Trout Stream – Burnsville, NC

The Way Home

The Way Home

Atlanta’s Marriott Marquis

I see new things and fresh perspectives each time I wander into this glorious hotel.  It’s been in many movies, including the Hunger Games.  The first image is noisy because of the very low light and my underexposure at capture, but I think it’s acceptable and gives even more character and texture to the overall look.  Each image was taken at 3200 ISO handheld.  Maybe someday I’ll step out on a limb and try shooting on tripod at the risk of drawing attention and/or being asked to leave. :-)

Skyward from Marriott Marquis Lobby - Atlanta

Skyward from Marriott Marquis Lobby – Atlanta

Elevator to the Sky - Marriott Marquis, Atlanta

Elevator to the Sky – Marriott Marquis, Atlanta

ATL Architecture

A couple from a short walkabout in downtown Atlanta.  Enjoy.

Old Glory at Peachtree Center

Old Glory at Peachtree Center

Looking Up Near America's Mart

Corners – Near America’s Mart, Atlanta

BART Millbrae Station

Train stations are always compelling to me because of the motion and energy, the study of travelers, and of course, the architecture.  Since this visit was around 10pm, there was very little going on.  However, the geometry and leading lines did not disappoint.

Bay Area Rapid Transit – Millbrae Station near the San Francisco Airport (SFO)

Round Pegs in Square (Rectangular) Holes

Round Pegs in Square (Rectangular) Holes

Infinity

To Infinity and Beyond

We Receive Your Rain … (There is a Cloud)

Today’s music worship at 12Stone Church was phenomenal (it never disappoints).  God rains blessings on us day in, day out.  He is always faithful with His promises and His loving presence.  The only thing often missing is our awareness.

One of today’s songs was There is a Cloud (by Elevation Worship).  It’s a current favorite of mine … the lyrics and metaphor are both powerful and fresh!

-Excerpt-

To the skies, heavy with blessing
Lift your eyes, offer your heart
Jesus Christ, opened the Heavens
Now we receive, the Spirit of God

We receive Your rain
We receive Your rain

Every seed, buried in sorrow
You will call, forth in its time
You are Lord, Lord of the harvest
Calling our hope, now to arise

We receive Your rain
We receive Your rain

We Receive Your Rain

We Receive Your Rain

Click -> Elevation Worship’s “There is a Cloud” Song/Video

Click -> 12Stone Church

Posted in: Faith, Music by Mark 1 Comment

My Eclipse

August 21, 2017 – Solar Eclipse across the USA, with Atlanta having a 98% totality coverage.

I was looking down while most were watching the sky.  :-)

Bridge Eclipsed

Bridge Eclipsed

Pining for More

Pining

Crescents

Crescents

Shadowed Maple

Shadowed Maple

Surreal

Surreal

Posted in: Abstract, Cityscapes, Eclipse by Mark 1 Comment
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