The photo montage to the left, by Cris Benton, is a color study of the salt marshes in Fremont. I personally think this piece is gorgeous – I could look at it for hours! Not only because the colors are so vibrant, but also because the composition is so playful and unexpected. This artwork was commissioned by the Don Edwards SF Bay National Wildlife Refuge Click here to see it up close.
The image to the right is by Redwood City-based photographer John Harrison. Another great color study – isn’t it amazing that these perfectly complementary color palettes just occur effortlessly in nature?? I think this photo would be a wonderful addition to a meditation room or a zen-like bathroom. Haven’t had a chance to use it yet, but I’m keeping my eyes open for just the right location. John is brilliant at capturing modern art images of natural settings; and his traditional landscape photos are also amazing. His pictures of Yosemite are some of the best I’ve ever seen.
That delicious buttercup color to the left is actually a close-up of a California poppy with a beetle resting on it. This image is a good reminder to me that sometimes we experience beauty by stepping forward rather than back. John Wall has taken some unbelievable close-ups of birds, butterflies and insects; it was difficult to choose only one! His blog is definitely worth a look.
The image to the right is not technically a photograph, but rather a high-resolution scan of plant material collected by John Muir over a hundred years ago. Renowned photographer Stephen Joseph worked with this image carefully in Photoshop to capture the original beauty of the leaves. The image is part of a series called John Muir Botanical Series project – a fascinating mix of art, history and technology. Stephen Joseph is also the author of a gorgeous coffee table book called Muir Woods Forest Meditations, a truly striking collection of landscape photographs from Muir Woods. Some of them almost look like paintings.
Last but definitely not least, the image to the left may look like a blown-glass sculpture but it’s actually a real photograph of a wave by Terry Way. I love this series (actually, I have this particular photograph in my kitchen). Terry is an incredibly versatile photographer, covering all manner of subjects from architecture to nature to weddings. I highly recommend him, he is amazing.
A final note: While I have chosen not to focus on the usual coastline, forest and mountain scenes in this post, all of the photographers mentioned here have calendar-worthy photos in that genre. Click through to their sites to see thousands of beautiful images!