Anytime we go on a road trip, I always bring along with us a camera kit of some sort and my watercolor field kit. However, we usually have so much ground to cover during our headlong flight along the spiderweb of asphalt that we are rarely able to stop long enough for me to get in a plein air watercolor painting — which usually can take me anywhere from 30-to-60 minutes or so (longer if I take the time to really enjoy my surroundings). Instead, we can briefly pause long enough for me to take photos of a scene to use as a later reference for a studio painting, like this one — a tiny abandoned cabin, out in the middle of nowhere
Can you imagine living in this tiny place that’s so isolated? As a profound anti-social introvert, I certainly can, though I expect life was quite tough here when the cabin was occupied — the closest town was at least 20-miles away, the ground is all basalt (hardened lava), it’s high desert (almost a mile above sea level), not much in the way of water or game, no trees for as far as the eye can see, and not much grows here beyond desert scrub (i.e., little in the way of farm crops).
Like I said, life was tough… maybe that’s why the cabin is abandoned.
Photo info: Abandoned cabin Arco, Idaho September 2014 Kodak TMAX 100 film Voigtländer 15/4.5 ASPH lens Leica M3 35mm film camera
During one of our many road trips to the American West, we stopped by the St. Anthony Sand Dunes. The sand dunes were new to me. Even though my hometown of Idaho Falls was fairly close by, I’d never been to the sand dunes before and didn’t even know that they existed. Considering that this section of eastern Idaho is all basalt, sand dunes just didn’t figure into my perception of what home really was.
However, once we parked in front of them, there was no denying that the sand dunes were right there in front of our eyes — so we spent most of the day exploring them and the surrounding area. This particular photo was taken on the northern side of the sand dunes, in an area devoid of anything but a rough dirt road and desert scrub… no houses, no fences, no property markers, no trees, no water… nothing except short bushes of aromatic sagebrush and isolated patches of tall dry grass.
Which makes the KEEP OUT sign all the more baffling… keep out of what, precisely? Keep out of trouble, perhaps? There was nothing to denote a property line. The only road was the one we were on, which was public, even if it was just dirt and poorly maintained. Not only that, but this was the only KEEP OUT sign to be found… weathered and forgotten.
Photo info: Keep Out St. Anthony Sand Dunes St. Anthony, Idaho September 2014 Kodak TMAX 100 film Voigtländer 15/4.5 ASPH lens Leica M3 35mm film camera