Images by John 'K'

Life as seen through my lens…

Category Archives: Photography

A place to sit and reflect…

We tend to fill our lives with “busy stuff” just to keep ourselves occupied. I am as guilty of that as the next person, but every now and again I force myself to get away from all that “stuff” so I can make time to enjoy the wonderful things around me.

On one such escape I found myself at the beach by Pigeon Point Lighthouse, a few miles south of Pescadero on California’s Highway 1. On this unusually warm sunny winter’s day I left my car at the side of the road and started walking along the trails that weave through the vegetation. Sprinkled along the trails are benches such as this one where you can sit and enjoy the scenery.

The view from the bench is perfect for reflecting on what is important – the ocean, the rocks, the beach, the wildlife, and the lighthouse – all metaphors for how we should all be living our lives. I could have sat there for hours enjoying the view, but then I would be missing out on much more beauty that the Pacific coastline has to offer.

As much as anything else, this little excursion taught me that I need to do this more often. Rather than just doing “busy stuff” I need to get out more and enjoy the beauty that this wonderful planet we all call home has to offer.

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Stepping back in time

For the past 7 years my wife and I have been repeat visitors to this place. We’ve now stayed at Howard Creek Ranch Inn (HCR) 15 times and we will be back there for more visits this year. Why? Because it’s at the north end of Highway 1 on the Pacific coast, so easy access to everything that Mendocino County has to offer, but more importantly it oozes rustic charm, and with no cellphone or (reliable) internet service it gives you that much-needed occasional break from our hectic connected lives. Oh, and the breakfasts are wonderful too, as are the hosts (Sally and Sunny Griggs).

I took this photo of the farmhouse at HCR on January 1, 2014, but the timeless look of the place on a slightly foggy afternoon made me want to have a little post-processing play… Click through and view this full screen for best effect.

If you do happen to visit Howard Creek Ranch, please mention me to Sally. 🙂

Out with the old, in with the new…

As we have done for the last few years, my wife and I stayed at Howard Creek Ranch in Westport, CA, for New Year. It’s a wonderful place for getting away from things and reflecting on what is truly important. One of the things we were reminded of during this trip is the importance of clear communication, as without clarity the best of intentions can be seen as something other than what was intended. Even after 33 years it is possible to make incorrect assumptions, and that old saying of “familiarity breeds contempt” becomes shockingly true.

The old me would make assumptions about what was meant when something was said to me. That needs to change… along with many other things about me, and as I work my way into my second half century the time has come to do something to turn the old me into something better… not that the old me was bad, but there is certainly room for improvement, and I intend to start making changes for the better.

Along with that will (hopefully) come some more attention to my presence here on the Internet, and perhaps some changes in how I treat my hobby, with a view to making something more of my photography. Wile I don’t necessarily want to change careers, it’d be nice if what I did at least became self-funding, and to help that along I’m going to have to become more comfortable about putting my thoughts and creations out here on the world wide web.

I’m not sure what will come of all of this, but hopefully some of it will be good!

Howard Creek Ranch 142 (Custom)

What a fluke!

What a fluke!, originally uploaded by Images by John ‘K’.

Given all of the recent news about a BIG pod of humpback whales in Monterey Bay, I made the decision yesterday to try and get out on a sailing with Monterey Bay Whale Watch to see this for myself. I was able to get on their boat that departed at 9am this morning, and I was not disappointed.

Spread over a sizable area of the northern side of the Monterey Bay we saw humpbacks scattered just about everywhere we looked. The guide on the boat estimated between 50 and 100 whales.

Humpbacks tend to keep a relatively low profile in the water – usually all you see of them is their blow-hole, humped back, and tail, and the most prominent sight for sure is the tail fluke as they dive (and we saw LOTs of this going on). We were lucky enough today to see some distant breaches (no pictures), and some “social” interactions such as tail and fin slapping on top of the usual surface, blow, arch and dive move of feeding whales. We also got to hear the whales, and smell their breath, thanks to the proximity of some of the whales as they surfaced.

It was a fantastic trip, and I am so glad I decided to go at short notice, for while we will be sailing with them on September 22, there are no guarantees all these whales will still be in the area then.

I have LOADS of pictures to go through, but here is a taster, straight out of the camera (apart from adding the watermark).

© 2013, John Krzesinski.

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FIRE! … or not!

FIRE!, originally uploaded by Images by John ‘K’.
Normally I would be upset on missing out on a photo opportunity, but not today. I decided to pop out this evening to get some photos of the fires that were burning up the land around Mound Diablo, not too far from where I live, but as I approached the mountain this evening all the smoke had gone! Reports stated that “Fire officials said as of 8 p.m. that the blaze had just “stopped,” that the total number of acres consumed had not grown since the afternoon”. Fingers crossed this means the fire has exhausted itself and it doesn’t flare up again! I didn’t get the pictures I wanted, but given the circumstances I really don’t care!
(The above picture was taken in 2010 of another wild fire on Mount Diablo)