Thursday, 3 July 2014

holidays and grandeur .....

I have been back just over a week from our Alaska, Arizona and Southern Utah trip away - having said that I am so aware that we only just scratched the surface of all that is to be seen in these amazing places in our three weeks away.  Though my body came back over a week ago, my mind is just catching up.  So often when we go away I have time to think and gain perspective on my life - come home with a bagful of ideas and possibilities.  This time I only managed to absorb the wonders around me, eat drink and plan the next day.  All the ideas I had of planning and plotting my next creative time, almost the rest of the year I had thought, came to nil as I just was transported by how amazing is this earth of ours.  No visits to Galleries or art shops, back alleys or aimless wanderings - a total focus on the beauty of nature.  (Guess I have to admit we both did a fair study of cuisine and vino as well - nourishment for the soul with all the energy it was expending!)

It is good to be back, I am looking forward to working hard in the studio as I pull some ideas together and which I will share as I progress.  I have yet to take time for a blogstudio wander through my friends - though will do so over the next weeks.  Longing to see what you have all been up to creatively.

How on earth does one select a few dozen photographs from amongst a thousand ...... not sure, but I have made an attempt here.  Enjoy travelling along with me.

Texture of the Olympic Torch in Vancouver.

We headed up to Whistler as the temps were about 24C.  Colder up here on the Mountains though!

We Kayaked in Whistler.

We flew by Float Plane back down to Vancouver and landed almost outside our hotel.

We stayed at Pan Pacific and sailed on Silver Seas - the ship is this photos is one of the Princess ships - not ours.

Every minute the view from our cabin was totally delicious.

Just like the photographs one sees of Alaska.

This was the view from the helicopter as we headed up onto the Juneau Ice Field for our trek on the Mendenhall Glacier.

And then the rain stopped and we were up high and it was simply stunning.

First glimpse of 'our' glacier.

Ah - the patterns.  Was really too gobsmaked to take many photos.

And water oh so blue and cold.  We were to trek up and down these steep little banks and hope not to fall in!

Orange hut was there in case we were stranded for any time up on the Glacier.  Comforting thought.

We trekked along and in those icy folds. Through an ice cave. Up and down.  Managed to avoided slipping in icy pools!

We travelled from Skagway up the Lynn Fiord, stopped here and walked through a forest to Davidson Lake and paddled to the Davidson Glacier.  Small after the HUGE Mendenhall but much better conditions to take photographs.

This Glacier forms into the lake, not the ocean, and from this point that glacial face is still about 5 miles from us.  Ended up motoring over in the canoe so we had more time to explore the face of the glacier.  I had been hoping for icebergs in the lake, but alas, it has been too warm.

A group was there, just above the face, doing some ice climbing.

Glorious Blues.

And gorgeous forms.

At the edge of the ice cave.

And the blue at the back.
Ice texture.

Journey back up the Fiord.  Pristine colours and wild life.  We had also seen a whale mother and her two cubs from the beach.

More exquisite views from our cabin as we set sail again - off to Glacier Bay.

Cruising up to Hubbard Glacier.  Magnificent approach with steel grey sky and ocean.  Thankfully that darkness lifted and we had grand views of these glaciers - Hubbard the main one, but numerous glacial flows joining into it along the way.

We only managed to get about a mile and a half from the face due to ice.  No huge icebergs as I had imagined but then on the 10th level of a ship, everything looked fairly small.  Of course had we managed to get closer to the face, it would have dwarfed the ship.  I forget how high it was.

Lovely reflections, and such green when the sun emerged.

From Seward we caught the train to Anchorage and some of the best views were to be seen.  Once again, too entranced to take many photos along the way but it was stunning.

I was going to post these photos next time but have put in just a few of our time in America.

Helicopter flight into the Grand Canyon at sunset for champagne 300 feet above the Colarado River with another 3,500 feet above us.  One of the top ten things I have done in my life (so was the glacial hike on Mendenhall Glacier).

We walked down into Bryce Canyon and walked extensively.

Horseshoe Bend - a little too early in the day to get a fabulous photo.  We and to be there before heading off to explore a 'slot canyon' and then drive back to LA.

Lower Antelope slot canyon - hidden away below the surface on native land.  We went in with a native guide.

Indescribably beautiful - sunlight from about 40 feet above, or more, causing these glorious colours from liquid gold to deep mauve or purple.  Hundreds of photos taken.  Even Steve had his camera out taking photographs.  We managed to get ahead of our group and felt like we were alone in the canyon.

What a trip - and now you have managed to wade through all these photographs.  Thank you. x


  1. You must have the most fabulous camera along with your amazing camera EYE... your travel photos are stunning.. the myriad textures are what I noticed the most... what a trip you went on...eye 'candy' and much inspiration.

  2. Thanks Donna. I must say I do have a lovely, though horribly heavy Canon EOS 50D with an 18 - 20mm lens. Having said that, most of these photos were taken with my fabulous little Panasonic LUMIX TZ30 which fits in my pocket. Hard to believe I know ....
    Tis good to be home though and I am looking forward to studio time. I have peeped at your new site and really love the latest body of work you have done. I will be in touch more thoroughly soon x

  3. What an incredible time you've had and so inspiring.
    I can feel quite easily that I could work from some of your photos - but I won't !!
    I'll just wait to see what you do - I know that there's going to be some wonderful work coming from you.

    Diane. xx

    1. Thanks Diane. An incredibly scenic trip for sure but for me, not images I would work from (other than the ice marks) as I did not have the sense of belonging to the land there as I do here in Australia when we travel. Just completely in awe of nature. Hope you are keeping well.

  4. Absolutely magnificent photos. What spectacular views and color!

    1. Thanks Connie - I think it was the colour that most stuck me on this trip. Australia is bedded in earth colour (or that is how I see it) and yet I will always think of Alaska as blue and Arizona as honey and lilac. A myriad of colour.

  5. Wow, words don't really cover it, spectacular

    1. Thanks Debbie. You are right - how can one find the words .......

  6. what a trip. no wonder you are still overwhelmed!

    1. Sometimes it is really good to be so overwhelmed as there is no mind play about how one could capture this imagery in the studio. Some things are best just left alone. Perfect, inspired and memory inscribing.

    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

    3. JENNIFER - thank you for you comment which was seen briefly then disappeared mysteriously! Not a trace ..... or was I dreaming you had popped in?

    4. I have indeed been here...several times, in fact, but only left one very short comment to begin. "Oh my..."

      All the way through your amazing photos, I kept thinking how funny it is that you came to the States for vacation and how I yearn to visit Australia. When John and I talk of where to go to next for holiday, our thoughts immediately turn to going to another country rather than another state. You took me on a journey to places I've yet to visit...and have me wanting to see them now. Delightful. Thank you for sharing your trip!

    5. Hello again Jennifer, and thanks for visiting my page again. I was like you until I met up with Steve - always heading away from my won country for holidays but over the last eight or nine years with him, I have seen SO much of Australia which is just beautiful. I would return to Southern Utah and Arizona again though one day as it is stunning. A young landscape unlike our Australian one which is so ancient and worn down - baring a different beauty.

  7. the sheer majesty of Mother Earth

  8. Oh thank you for letting us see a bit of your beautiful journey. If you had travelled straight up the Hubbard glacier you would have crossed the border into Canada and arrived at the place I work and live - Kluane National Park. You saw it from a different angle then I do, so I loved seeing the pictures, and so enjoyed knowing you were so very close to the bit of the world I call home.

    1. What a beautiful part of the world you live in Kim - very very cold, but oh so majestic. I imagine that you get the thrill of viewing ice marks on the glaciers often - which for me was a complete novelty. LOVED it ..... also had a lovely warm feeling when reading that you were almost in my line of sight when I was looking back up Hubbard Glacier.


I appreciate your comments - thank you!