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Random Jazz Six/Twenty-Eight/Two-Thousand-and-Sixteen

I suck at posting photos these days, just like I do at life. Except for go-karts. I’m the best at go-karts.

This random assortment includes failed cow petting attempts, pretty girls, Star Trek themed Christmas photos (just a joke; don’t kill me), and a few pictures of this new place called “Yosemite.” Maybe someday I’ll get around to posting photos of New Zealand, Louisville, Sedona, the Grand Circle, and other less random stuff that is just collecting dust inside my hard drive, which doesn’t actually make sense unless you’re a top-notch writer like me who also happens to excel in the art of go-kart racing, in which case dust on photos inside my hard drive totally makes sense. Also, run-on sentences are awesome.

Canyonlands cow

Cheynne Conner model

Hula hooping is part of this balanced breakfast

Cheyenne and Molly

Sunset under the tree of forgetfullness

Star Wars Christmas card photos

Star Wars Christmas card photos

Cheynne Conner model

Yosemite winter

Upper Yosemite fall frozen

Half Dome in the winter

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Random Jazz 9/17/2015

I went to some random places and made some photographs of them. Also of my pretty girlfriend. Enjoy.

Kayla, a mask, and the Milky Way-Alabama Hills

Milky Way and a shooting star (and my friend Kayla) at the Alabama Hills

Cheyenne Conner



Cheyenne Conner in Mexico


Lost balloons

Cheyenne Conner


Cheyenne Conner

Monterey Tree

Golden Gate Bridge sunset

Milky Way at Mono Lake

The Milky Way at Mono Lake

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In Search of the Promised Land

A few weeks ago some friends and I decided to go wander the desert (thus my mildly sacrilegious title). While we didn’t find any manna, we did find some really interesting places. When in the desert, it often pays to take the road less traveled. I’ve been working my tail off and am exhausted, so I’m going to stop talking and show you pictures. Bye.

Palm Springs from Keys View


Desert cabin


Desert cabin

Desert abandoned building

Desert cabin

Desert crosses

Jenelle and her pony

Desert headstones

Desert art

Cheyenne the patriot




Hello again. I did want to say this: if Toby’s friends sought fit to erect such an awesome roadside memorial, I feel like he or she was the type of person I would have liked to have known. Rest in Peace, person whom should have been my friend.
Toby roadside memorial

Joshua Tree sunset

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Random Jazz: Circle Gets the Square Edition

More unpublished stuff for you.

First up are some photos of my friend Tim Gill, who’s an amazing musician and leads a few different incredible musical groups, including the Tim Gill All Stars. You should probably go see them live or buy some of their music if you know what’s good for you.
Tim Gill

Tim Gill

Tim Gill

I did some work with my friend Anna Habrat (the Magical Blonde Hair Stylist) for entries in the NAHA competition. While I can’t show you the super rad styles she came up with until after the competition, I thought I’d throw in some interesting outtakes if for no other reason than model Dawnielle has amazing eyes.
Model takes a break

Crying model

I made this mermaid a few months ago with my Pixelstick. There’s supposed to be some dolphins in there, but they’re jerks and aren’t showing up well.
Pixelstick mermaid at the pool

Urban river

This one hurts my head to look at.
Urban fountain

Urban fountain

Tuolomne meadows

Moon reflected in a building

I know this photo doesn’t look like much, but I’m pretty sure it’s the most perfect photo I’ve ever taken. Some day when I die this will be sold for millions of dollars. Get your copy now for a mere $1,000.

And last but not least, a giant hole. See you next year!
Pentagon at OC Performing Arts Center

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Random Jazz: Insert Clever Title Here Edition

I’m too tired to come up with a clever title tonight or to write words good. So, pictures look you. Bye.

Rock of the gods

Of winds and chains

Shady city



Industrial moonrise

Digital flower


Oregon waterfall

Beach bird sunset

Flag at sunset

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European Б-Sides

Most of my pictures never get published. Usually this is because I’m unhappy with the photos. Other times, it’s because the photos are redundant to other shots I like better. All of the items below are unpublished photos from a trip I took to Kiev, Chernobyl, and Paris (also London, but I hate most of those photos). I’ve got loads more images from Europe, so I’m sure I’ll do another one of these in the future.

Chernobyl kindergarten

If a town near Chernobyl “died” as a result of the nuclear accident, it was typically razed and buried to prevent people from visiting it. When this happened, a sign with the town name was erected and a red slash placed on it, denoting that the town was no more.

Dead town near Chernobyl

Eiffel Tower lights

Chernobyl toy

Chernobyl window toys

This is what a destroyed grocery store looks like.

Chernobyl grocery store, supermarket

Graffiti by an unknown artist in Pripyat, Chernobyl’s most famous lost town.

Chernobyl graffiti

Chernobyl gym ferris wheel

Chernobyl kindergarten

Paris tomb

Prypyat gym

I’ve published a photo of this refrigerator before, but since I love the subject so much I decided to post a second image. One of the great mysteries of my life will forever be why this home appliance came to be hanging out on the corner of a Parisian intersection.

Lost fridge in Paris

Chernobyl Prypyat bumper cars

France tulips

Kiev cathedral

Pripyat’s most famous icon is the Ferris wheel in the town’s amusement park, which was scheduled to open just a few days after the meltdown occurred.

Chernobyl amusement park

To finish up, here are two shots of the Eiffel Tower: one at sunrise and one not long after a stormy sunset.

Eiffel Tower sunrise

Eiffel Tower storm

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3,000 Miles to Ghostland, Part II

I think that most visitors probably don’t care about my commentary (like in part I), so I’m going to keep the chattiness to a low roar. The photos below come from various places in Utah, Arizona, and New Mexico, including Horseshoe Bend, Antelope Canyon, Monument Valley, Shiprock, Zion Canyon, and more. If you would like more info, post in the comments or better yet, let’s go have a beer (or wine, as the situation warrants).

Horseshoe Bend sunset

A rainy sunset, somewhere in Utah

A hoodoo in Mystery Canyon near Kanab, Utah

Watchman sunset, Zion National Park, taken from Canyon Junction Bridge

I love pictograms/pictographs and petroglyphs, and seek them out whenever possible. Navajo and Hopi lands seem to be full of them, with many dating as far back as 3,000 years.

Petroglyphs inside Monument Valley

It’s interesting to think that these hand prints might be from someone who died 1,000 years ago.
Hand print petroglyphs in Monument Valley

Here’s one thought to be Kokopelli, a Native American god that combines Johnny Appleseed, the pregnancy stork, St. Patrick, and Loki all into one, much cooler figure.

Petroglyph of Kokopelli

Sand Island bluff, a short drive north of Monument Valley, has a large panel about 100 feet in length just covered with thousands of petroglyphs. It’s pretty neat and only takes about 20 minutes of your time to see it all.
Sand Island petroglyphs

Some are more modern and occasionally humorous (if you find petroglyphs, please don’t do this):
Sand Island petroglyph graffiti

Note the icon high up on the wall. It’s maybe 25 feet off the ground, so it’s kind of a mystery how it got up there. What’s not a mystery is that some idiots have tried to hit it with firearms, thus the bullet damage in the surrounding rock. Dear random morons: I hate you.
Petroglyphs at Sand Island, including bullet damage to one

Below are a few shots of the hike to Angels Landing in Zion Canyon (here’s an overly dramatic video that shows the view and some of the dropoffs). The hike is very strenuous and the final approach to the landing is basically a cliff ledge. It’s not for the faint of heart. (Sorry about the photos; to save on weight I didn’t bring my big cameras with me).

The final steep, narrow spine to get to the top of Angels Landing.

The final steep, narrow spine to get to the top of Angels Landing.

Part of the trail.

Part of the trail. Note the tiny white car on the road near the top-right of the photo.

Taking a break at the top of the Landing.

Taking a break at the top of the Landing.

The view from the top. Worth the effort and anxiety.

The view from the top. Worth the effort and anxiety.

The whole reason I planned this trip initially was to photograph Shiprock, a huge, 1,500-foot-tall monadnock in northern New Mexico. The day I went to visit, that part of the state was absolutely nailed by torrential rains. The closest I could get was about 7 miles out, as the roads became impassable. I had to slog through deep mud and deal with non-stop rain to approach these horses. Thankfully, they stayed still long enough for me to get a portrait.
Horses in the rain near Shiprock, NM

The Watchman in a boring sunset. Zion National Park.

The Watchman during a boring sunset. Zion National Park.

Two views of the Monument Valley “mittens”:

Dusk at the Mittens, Monument Valley

Dusk at the Mittens, Monument Valley

Dawn at the Mittens, Monument Valley

Dawn at the Mittens, Monument Valley

Here’s a few shots from the unspeakably beautiful Upper Antelope Canyon. Go here before you die.

Sunbeam, Upper Antelope Canyon

Upper Antelope Canyon

Upper Antelope Canyon

Upper Antelope Canyon

Sunbeams, Upper Antelope Canyon

"The Heart," Upper Antelope Canyon

“The Heart,” Upper Antelope Canyon

"Sandfall" in Upper Antelope Canyon

“Sandfall” in Upper Antelope Canyon

And to close, sunrise at the “totem pole” in Monument Valley. Thanks for visiting, and let me know if you’re interested in prints or want to give me a high five.

Sunrise at the Monument Valley "totem pole"

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3,000 Miles to Ghostland, Part I

On the last day of my trip I found myself seated across from an attractive female employee of the MGM Grand Las Vegas, eating lunch and discussing travel. As the meal wound down I briefly reflected on how relatively uneventful this trip had been. I was immensely tired and travel worn, a cancelled flight shuffled some plans around a bit, and I’m pretty sure a ghost chased me out of an isolated pet cemetery one inky Utah night, but that’s all business as usual for me. Despite having seen some of the Southwest’s most beautiful sights, I felt slightly incomplete still.

After a moment I looked back to the face across from me, thanked her for buying me lunch, and watched while she placed the just-signed check directly into a glass full of water by mistake. Enjoying the slightly embarrassed but highly amused smile that arose on her face, I quietly thanked the universe for the proper ending I was hoping for.


Ten days earlier I started my journey in Laughlin, the decidedly lower rent version of Las Vegas. For $25 I had a nice hotel room and ten thousand senior citizens to keep me company. In between these two gambling bookends was 3,000 miles of driving and a disappointingly large number of mediocre photos. Below are some that I hope are slightly better than mediocre. There’s kind of a lot, and I’ve written a fair amount of text, so feel free to take a break if you need to. I’ll wait until you come back. (Click on a photo to enlarge.)


The first destination was some hole in the ground, apparently called “The Grand Canyon.”

View from the Desert View Watchtower

Grand Canyon

My friend X-Ray joined me for the first few days of the trip and suggested that we swing by the Flintstone’s Bedrock City in Williams, AZ, not too far from the Grand Canyon. This place was hilariously awful. Even though people worked there and some people who probably had leprosy were camping there, the place was about as abandoned and neglected as could be. It was sublimely beautiful in its decay.

Dinosaur slide, Flintstone's Bedrock City

Note that the sign only says “Fred’s House.” Apparently, his slave-wife Wilma lived outside.

I’m not sure who this man was, why he was in jail, why his arm was torn off, or why he was allowed to decorate his cell, but I absolutely love that the owners of the park didn’t even try to hide the modern surge protector (which, you’ll notice, doesn’t actually have anything plugged into it).

Oh look, a camera taking a picture of a saber-toothed tiger. Let’s take a gander at the scene.
Old-fashioned camera at Bedrock City

Way to let me down, Flintstone’s Bedrock City.
View of a sabre-toothed tiger

Don’t be fooled: this “goatasaurus” is actually just a regular goat. I’m not sure why there’s an apostrophe. Apparently, they couldn’t afford to hire staff that know how to spell.

Returning back to the Grand Canyon, this is the Desert View Watchtower, which stands guard at the east side of the park.
Desert View Watchtower

Interior of the watchtower:
Interior of the Desert View Watchtower

Grand Canyon

Grand Canyon Grand Canyon Grand Canyon

This is Goosenecks State Park; don’t go here. On paper it seems like it should be interesting because flow of the river is so crazy, but it’s not really worth the trip.
Goosenecks State Park

This is Horseshoe Bend just outside Page, Arizona. Go here instead:
Horseshoe Bend

The grave or memorial site of Ginny Roberts near Mexican Hat Rock. Try as I might, I can’t find any information on Ms. Roberts.

Below are the “Betatakin” Anasazi ruins at Navajo National Monument (one of three such sites at the monument). Unfortunately, this time of year you can’t get to the 800-year-old dwellings, so I had to be content with photos from across the canyon. The scale of the photo is a little misleading, as that alcove you see here is about 450 feet high. The canyon is about twice that in total.
Betatakin ruins, Navajo National Monument

In order to save on gas I borrowed a Prius from my company. Here it is in the middle of the Valley of the Gods, Utah.
Valley of the Gods

Valley of the Gods is north of Monument Valley, and because it’s not on Navajo lands, you don’t need a guide. While driving through the park I saw these cattle grazing with Monument Valley in the distance. I took this photo from the same spot as I did the shot of the Prius. As I crept closer to the nearest cow, which had surprisingly large horns (do female cows have large horns too?), I kept looking back at the car hoping that it was close enough to run to if need be. I’m not sure that it was.

I call this photo “birds of a feather,” ’cause…you know…the oil thing in the back kinda looks like the horse. Yes, I know I’m very clever. Yes, I know horses don’t have feathers, which makes the title funnier. Yes, I still know that I’m very clever.
Birds of a feather

This one I call “fish out of water.” See above, re: clever.
Fish out of water

The Navajo Twins

Toadstool hoodoo

Tree and arch, Monument Valley

Monument Valley

This is the inside of a tiny little chapel on the road to Flagstaff. It appears to be always open and usable by anyone. While taking photos inside snow was lightly falling outside. It was a very pleasant, calm moment. Curiously, as if to provide an exact definition of “juxtapose” for me, the bible on the lectern was open to Jeremiah 14. God is in full “angry Old Testament god mode” here.

Church near Flagstaff

Church near Flagstaff

Called “Moqui holes,” the indentations in this photo were created by Indians climbing to and from a place where they hid supplies.
Moqui holes inside Mystery Canyon

Sunset near Monument Valley

I played tourist one day and went to the Four Corners monument. Here’s me kinda-sorta standing in four states.
Four Corners monument

And here’s a wider shot of the monument:
Four Corners monument

Abandoned store

I mentioned earlier that I was at a very remote, very large pet cemetery one night, which I happened to come across accidentally while exploring another area. The sun had already set so it was getting dark quickly, and there was absolutely no wind; all the wind chimes you see in this picture weren’t making any noise. I took this photo and then kept walking in the direction of the newly dug grave in the background. Suddenly, a large group of birds exploded in a panic out of a tree next to me and the wind came up out of nowhere, sending the wind chimes into a frenzy. I figured that was my cue to leave, and with the largest goosebumps I’ve probably ever had, hurried back to my car.
Pet cemetery at the Best Friend's Animal Sanctuary

Sunset near Monument Valley

This next shot is of Agathla Peak near sunset. Rising more than 1,500 feet from the earth, it’s the hardened throat of a volcano that has long since disappeared.
Agathla Peak near sunset

I’m going to wrap up Part I (quite suddenly, I might add) with this photo of a Monument Valley sunrise taken from the balcony of my hotel room at the View Hotel (which was awesome). I should have Part II up in a day or so, so check back soon! Also, I might actually make prints available for some of these photos (which is rare for me), so if you’re interested, let me know.
Monument Valley sunrise

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Random Jazz: Melancholy Ghost Wolf Edition

Another day, another “where the heck do I pust this stuff?” post. Since most of this has kind of a forlorn feel, I figured it made sense to group it together. The next post should be happier, including some photos I did for my awesome friend and her new business.

First, some photos from the ol’ abandoned Griffith Park Zoo. Built in 1912 and closed in 1966, the zoo was probably a terrible place to raise your animal family.  According to Wikipedia, it was constructed in the “caves-with-iron-bars style,” which as we all know is how most animals in the wild have built their homes since the discovery of iron in the 15th-century.

Abandoned Griffith Park Zoo

Old Los Angeles Zoo

Abandoned Zoo Cage

Old Griffith Park Zoo stairs

This is the view looking up from inside one of the iron cages. The view out the front was pretty much the same sad thing.

View from abandoned cage, old Griffith Park Zoo

Abandoned Animal Cage

It’s hard to see in this shot, but that thing at the bottom is a gigantic wolf dog. Members of a wolf dog rescue group were at the park with several of these magnificent animals, one of which was apparently curious as to what I was doing.

Ghost Wolf at Old Griffith Park Zoo

Up next is a random road-side display I found when visiting a friend. I really hope the owner of that car didn’t have a run in with a drunk driver, although seems to be somewhat common these days unfortunately.

Drunk driving car

To close, a few beach photos.

A child's lost bucket at Crystal Cove

Crystal Cove sunset

I wanted to take some photographs on New Year’s Day, so I figured that a good way to start off 2014 was to visit my “memorial rock” and do some reflecting on the past. I said hello to my lost friends, took some pictures, and headed home thinking of the future. As always, thank you for visiting.

Corona Del Mar Rock at Night


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Catalina Dreamin’

I had a birthday recently, and because I’m so awesome, Catalina Express decided to give me a free round-trip ticket to the lovely island city of Avalon. Someone told me that they do that for everyone on their birthday, but I’m pretty sure they’re wrong and they did it because I smell nice, among other things.

Anyways, I’ve been traveling to Catalina for years to scuba dive, but had never actually photographed it. So with my trusty camera in hand, I headed over.

The weather was pleasant and the island quiet, so I had a fairly relaxing day (more on that in a minute).

The first thing I did was head over to the Casino to take the walking tour of said building, which I had never been inside of.

Via Casino, Avalon, Catalon

Catalina was at one point quite famous for its “Catalina tile,” which is still used extensively to decorate the island. The next few tile mosaics (?) are on the walking path to the Casino.

Shark mosaic on Catalina

This one shows what I think is Sugarloaf Point in the distance, before the large rocks were destroyed to make room for buildings, including the current Casino.

Ship mosaic on Catalina

As I waited for the tour to start, the young woman selling tickets took a call on her cell: “Please tell me you’re not calling with bad news….She…didn’t make it? … Oh $&*#…Oh $&*#….” I was the only one who heard her in this very private, very sad moment. I felt like I should say something or try to comfort her, but what do you say to a total stranger in a situation like that? In a moment she had moved into a side room and the tour started, so I never found out what I may have tried to say. I hope she’s doing ok.

Back to the tour, I’ll say that the inside of the Casino is incredible. The Wrigley family spent an obscene amount of money making it about as ornate as was possible at the time. The waiting area just outside the movie theater has a roof filled with 22-carat gold-leaf stars. I don’t have a photo inside the theater, but trust me when I say that it’s breathtaking.

Ornate light fixture

View of an island traffic jam from the second floor of the building, which is actually about 10 stories up.

Catalina traffic jam

This is the chandelier…thing at the center of the formal ballroom on the top floor of the Casino. The piece is quite large and can be rotated.

Chandelier of ball room at the Avalon Casino

In the entry way to the theater are a number of beautiful mosaics and wall paintings. These pieces, which are the originals put up in the 1920s, are still impressive to look at.

Mosaic on Avalon Casino

In the event that your workplace doesn’t like au naturel, 85-year-old mermaids painted onto the sides of large public buildings, I’ve decided to make this one small. Click to see it full-size. This mural was the only one completed as originally intended using Catalina tile. With opening day around the corner, the Casino’s designer was told to paint the rest directly on the concrete facing of the building. This piece is one of the prettiest works of art I’ve yet to see in California.

Mermaid mosaic on the Avalon, Catalina Casino


Earlier, I mentioned that the day was relaxing. That is, with the exception of hiking to the top of the cliff just above the Casino. What a trek!  Walking to the cliff-face directly over the building, I came across this structure set into the ground. By the looks of it, it was buried for some time and was recently uncovered when the dirt was washed away. Decorated with a tile cross and about the size of a child’s grave, I couldn’t help but wonder if it wasn’t just that. I’ve not been able to find any information on it though.

The Casino from the cliff behind it, including a grave(?)

The Casino and Avalon harbor from the overlooking cliff

No idea what this is meant to be, but I found it looking out from a house on the hike back down the hill.

Wicker animals

I got a late lunch whilst waiting for the sun to get lower and took some pictures of various tile installations around town. It’s quite interesting to see the large design variety on  structures and buildings. Below are two such examples.

Catalina tiles

Catalina tiles

Carrying all my gear up the hill again didn’t sound very appealing, so I hired a cab to take me part of the way. The sunset wasn’t spectacular, but the waning daylight still made for a great view.

A lonely sailboat

To close off the post, here’s a shot of Avalon harbor just after dusk. Thanks for visiting!

Avalon Casino and harbor at night from the overlook

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