Thursday, May 28, 2009

Why I Photograph Rocks.

You may have noticed, if you’ve viewed my photographic portfolio, that I like to photograph rocks... well rocks and plants actually. There’s no mystery in why this is so. It's because I’m basically lazy and these are the two most plentiful types of objects on the earth. These two subjects alone offer me a myriad of forms, colors, textures, and shapes with which to play.

My earliest photographic vacations were in Maine and I became fascinated with the variety of rocks across the state. Multicolored striated layers near Pemaquid, pink granite around Acadia, gray granite in the Western mountains but also a mix of different types of boulders deposited throughout each of these areas. These offered some beautiful contrasts with the native rocks.

The rocks of the Maine coast are some of the oldest on the planet. They exhibit the deformations and scars of their long journey through time. Mostly volcanic in origin, compressed, deformed and transformed by tectonic pressures these rocks were more recently scoured by receding glaciers leaving the bedrock exposed to the further forces of erosion by wind and water. In places you can find layers of rock that have been folded back on themselves creating very unique striated forms.

My trip to Hawaii in 1998 allowed me to go back to the beginning of the cycle and see the creation of new surface features via the deposition of ash and the expulsion of lava. Most fascinating were my trips into the Kiluea and Haleakala craters, here I found all sorts of new forms, textures and colors to interact with. These landscapes were of another world and I really felt like I was on another planet as I descended into Haleakala.

I’m really looking forward to an upcoming trip back to the big island of Hawaii and especially an opportunity to explore Kauai for the first time. That trip will take me to a much older land than that on Maui which has been further transformed by erosion. I anticipate coming home with a few good rock images.