Friday, July 16, 2010

DESERT DWELL: The Anza-Borrego Desert

Desert Dwell: Photographs from the Anza-Borrego Desert

There is a thing that happens in quiet places. In places of openness and solitude.
Its a coming together of the essence of the inhabitants and the spirit of place.
Plant with rock, rock with sky, sky with mountain. These inhabitants speak to each
other without words and at their core is the spirit of the other.In the rock you see the
mountain in the mountain you see the sky. This speaks to the relationships
of everything, the interconnectedness of all things.

The Anza-Borrego Desert is one of these places. A place large and open but
with hidden washes and canyons. A place where rock is slowly revealed by rain
and mountains reach up to the the clouds that mimic them. The ever but
slowly changing landscape is a place of unity, cohesion, beauty, mystery and fate.
These photographs are the instruments through which this is discovered.

(I'm still in the process of updating the website...stay tuned for more...)

Saturday, October 24, 2009

jerry. october 23, 2009

so ready to go...around and around...

so its been a few weeks. Yvonne held on to the fabulous four until my return from California. I brought them home and got them acclimated for a few days...keeping them caged...outside during the day and in the house at night...they could fall prey to raccoons etc at night. i released them on friday, glad the weather was good.

Photographically, it
ended up being a let down for me in the end as I couldn't stay home to work the day of their release. the girls were so ready to go and it took only a few moments for them to find their nerve to step out. once out they were off exploring the trees...around and around the trunks the ran. the boys weren't quite so eager and they were just starting to think about emerging when i had to head out. so all those weeks shooting and i missed the biggest part. such is life.

i saw the four of them this morning around and around the tree trunks. jerry's is pretty easy to spot because he has so much red in his fur. considering they were hand fed, handled and talked to they sure have taken to being in the trees. as it should be.

cage o' squirrels = doggie tv

thank you, Yvonne, for all you do for these little ones... and thank you for putting up with me! you are an amazing lady!


these little pups are the latest four leggeds to benefit from Yvonne's kind heart. she fostered the pregnant momma, Abbey, and helped her deliver 11 pups...24 hour labor, 8 hour delivery. 10 black one
chocolate...5 girls, 5 boys and 1 choc
olate boy...

Saturday, September 26, 2009

jerry. september 25, 2009

ok, well, this is about all i could get of jerry, hiding in the tube. there are 2 girls and 2 boys in jerry's family...the boys hide and the girls come out to say hi and get some peanuts. the girls mature faster ...imagine that. the boys were very fearful making those scared squirrel noises we've all heard coming from the trees
...especially if your a dog owner.

i'll be going out of town for a few weeks so i suspect jerry will be pretty much a full blown squirrel when i get back. Yvonne and i plan to release them in my yard, so even though they are about ready to go, she'll hold off until my return. getting up close to cage full of almost mature squirrels is actually pretty intimidating... it should be an interesting experience.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

jerry. september 16, 2009

jerry briefly chilling on my shoulder...operative word - 'briefly'.

Yvonne and i plan to take jerry and his 'siblings' to my house for their release. it makes me happy to think i'll be able to watch them run the trees. and maybe they'll decide to stick around.

like i figured, jerry is getting harder to photograph, hardly ever sitting still. squirrel curiosity had him checking out my camera.

my first squirrel bite. really just a nibble. one of jerry's fiesty sisters mistook me for a nut... let me rephrase edible nut...

i photographed this guy because he's so cute and its amazing how individual all these creatures are. notice how his head is a totally different shape than jerry's.

would you know what these were if you found them on the ground?
i'm not sure if i would have.... well, before now anyway.
these three are about a week old.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

jerry. september 11, 2009

the days of sitting still, curling up and chilling out are over.
jerry squirms when held aloft, runs up and down my arms, sits on top
of my head and pees on my shoulder. glad he didn't pee on my head.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

jerry. september 4, 2009

this little guys is full of energy...he's squirrelly. we tried feeding him so he would be chilled and maybe sleepy, but he was far too interested in watching me. the idea that he recognizes me is heart warming, if not illogical.

jerry is in the hands of Yvonne's apprentice, Lorraine. we couldn't manage to get him into a sleepy curl, but i think its still pretty apparent how fast he grows. a month ago i could hardly imagine him looking like this. Lorraine has five other squirrels that are a few weeks older than jerry. they aren't friendly to strangers, which is how it should be. but i wonder...when jerry gets to that point, will he remember me?

this is one of Lorraine's charges forcefully asking me to back off.

i love those squirrel feet.


Saturday, August 29, 2009

jerry. august 27, 2009.

its hard to believe how much he changes in just 1 week. at some point, because they are still wild animals, they get a little hard to handle but Yvonne says hes a real sweetie.

rub his chin and you get ....

... does it get any sweeter than this?!

beautiful tail. jerry is starting to sit up and nibble...looking like a typical squirrel, though he still falls over.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

jerry. august 19, 2009

look who is looking.

jerry's eyes opened the day after i was there last week.

he's a lot more active now and its getting harder to photograph him.

Yvonne is jerry's rehabilitator....the squirrel lady i call her. squirrels will go into a trance when they feed. jerry is definitely 'trancing out'. Yvonne has been so kind in letting me into her squirrel kingdom to witness the process of getting these little ones back into the trees.

full belly = sleepy squirrel.

i can't help but think about how lucky this little guy is. actually, all these little ones in Yvonne's care are lucky! This cool lady has spent 17 years caring for the lost, orphaned and injured. its quite a responsibility.

i found myself instantly responsible having found this little creature and i resented it in a way. as soon as a realize what was on the sidewalk at my feet i thought, shit, now what. really i resented the
sudden choice i had to make because i would have to live with it. if i let nature take its course, he would most likely die slowly, but probably be dead by morning. if not dead by morning than the rowdy neighborhood crows would pick him apart. maybe he would have made a small meal for a fox during the night. or he would become fodder for fly maggots. all these choices would have been good and right, as is the natural world. but still, to walk away from the helpless... i guess as a species we do it everyday, maybe thats why i didnt do it that night. he was helpless but i was not. he was cold and my hands were warm. how could i not give him that. sure there are people out there that find squirrels a pointless nuisance. its a matter of perspective. i find them joyful, friendly, symbolic of trust and analogous of my scattered life and jumpy brain.

the ones lucky enough to make into Yvonne's hands are carriers of a special kind of love. selfless, respectful and pure. and love is the best kind of energy we have to give. the rehabilitated take it back out into the wilderness with them. that too is good and right.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

jerry. august 12, 2009

the hair on his tail has been trimmed so that we could tell him apart from the others.

one of the three orphans jerry roomed with last week had to be euthanized because of malocclusion. another had a growth spurt. he's now rooming with 2 girls. one has her eyes open. jerry's eyes are still closed and he's definitely the smallest in the group.