Wild View Yonder

Please visit Wild View Yonder, a collection of aerial photography from Shutter-Eye.

Sunday, October 29, 2006

More Fall Colors

Day dawns foggy. Brightly colored trees stand in sharp contrast to the dreary morning.

Later in the morning, along the river, the fog lifts.

In the full sun of the afternoon, the intentsity of the colors is striking.

Friday, October 27, 2006

Fall Colors

Autumn puts on a spectacular show. As the temperatures drop, the leaves begin to change. The color and intensity varies from year to year but it's always beautiful. Ordinarily I don't post this many frames in a single posting but I just couldn't omit any of these.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Sierra Fire, Valley Smoke

Seen from 41,000', Smoke from a fire in the Sierra Nevada Mountains fills canyons and valleys above Bakersfield, California.

Monday, October 23, 2006


Fire is an interesting photographic subject. It is dynamic, behaving almost as though alive. It transmits light yet casts a shadow. Staring at it can be mesmerizing. It is hot. A camera can be damaged - melted - if brought too close.

A huge pile of Debris from trees cleared earlier in the year is burning. Though not apparent in the picture, rain is falling and has been, heavily at times, for the past several days. Everything is very wet. This effectively prevents hot embers from spreading flames to nearby vegetation and structures.

The stump of an old cedar tree cut down long ago burns in the fire.

The smoldering wood glows red-hot in this contrast-exaggerated image.

Wood cut from the cleared trees burns in the fireplace, warming my home.

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Night sky

In the hour or so just before dawn, this star trail was taken. The Big Dipper is in the center. Polaris, the North Star, is to the upper left. The exposure time was limited to 8 minutes by the equipment I'm using.
This tiny version does not do justice to the image. Click on the image to see a higher resolution rendition.

Thursday, October 19, 2006


Rain falls. The droplets cover everything. This leaf repels the water causing it to ball up into tiny droplets.

Monday, October 16, 2006

Murals of Toppenish

Toppenish is a small town in Eastern Washington not far off Interstate 82. On its buildings are painted mural depictions of various aspects of the local history. The town's population is made up of roughly equal numbers of Native Americans, Hispanics, and white folks. On the day we visited, there were few people on the streets. Country music blared from PA horn loudspeakers mounted on buldings throughout the commercial "downtown" area. The weather was overcast and rainy. The combination of these factors made for a surrealistic, Twilight Zone like experience.

Indians Winter Encampment
Although the winters were long, cold and bleak, the local tribes survived the hardships. The winter lodge was the gathering place for social functions. Hulan Fleming of Bothell, Washington, painted this mural to depict a typical winter encampment. It is located on the north wall of the Kirkwood Building on South Toppenish Ave., the same building where the Mural Society office is located.

At the Peak of the Harvest
The twelfth mural in the series depicts a potato harvest of bygone days. Sponsored by Toppenish's Bouchey families - potato growers - the mural illustrates the back-breaking work potato harvest was until the development of mechanized harvesting. Fred Oldfield, with a little help from his friends, completed this mural across from Old Timers Plaza downtown in the summer of 1991.

The Crossroads to Market
Artist Robert Thomas shows the various methods of moving commodities to market in this collage. Thomas was born and raised in Toppenish and now resides in Kooskia, Idaho. The mural is on the wall of the Pow Wow Emporium adjacent to Old Timers Plaza in downtown Toppenish.

As I strolled about taking pictures of the various murals, these two fellows stopped me and announced that they are full-blooded Nez-Perce who live on the street here and have all their lives. Their demeanor was a curious mixture of deep sadness and a hint of a strange sort of pride. I was struck by the sad thought that these two represent what remains of once great Native American populations.

The Blacksmith Shop
Roger Cooke, a well-known artist from Sandy, Oregon, has recreated a composite of Toppenish's early day blacksmith shops - there were four of them at the turn of the century. Blacksmith shops were the backbone of the local economy then, repairing wagon wheels, shoeing horses, and manufacturing various metal products.

Newell's Drive
You can find artist Don Crook's paintings in galleries around the country, but nowhere will you find a bigger one than this mural on the Reid Building facing South Toppenish Ave. Crook painted "Newell's Drive" to illustrate a horse round-up led by early Toppenish pioneer Charlie Newell. It took six weeks for Crook to complete the 70-foot scene, assisted by his wife Shirley Crystal and by Gary Kerby.

When Hops Were Picked by Hand
This mural by Robert Thomas of Kooskia, Idaho, shows an early hop harvest when the crop was picked by hand. This was usually done by Indians from all over the Northwest, who came to the Toppenish area each year with their families, pets and chickens. They set up small Indian villages of teepees at the hop fields, staying until the harvest was completed. The mural was funded by the hop industry, which also paid for and developed a park called Old Timers Plaza, adjacent to the mural.

Hanging Out and Hanging Up
This is one of the two murals on the downtown "Public Westrooms" created as the eighth annual Mural-in-a-Day, June 1, 1996. The building is located across Division Street from Old Timers Plaza in downtown Toppenish. A breezy spring in the early 1900s finds mom hanging the clothes and dad reading a catalog in the "library". Jack Fordyce of Yakima did the original painting.

Halloween Pranks
This is the second half of the 1996 Mural-in-a-Day, on the public restrooms in downtown Toppenish, also with a theme relating to outhouses. In the early days when outside plumbing was common, pranksters were on the prowl Halloween night and anybody using the facilities that night did so at their own peril. Jack Fordyce of Yakima is the creator.

The Lou Shattuck Story
L. S. (Lou) Shattuck (1892-1978) was one of the original Toppenish Pow Wow Rodeo boosters. He helped organize the rodeo in the beginning. The artist is Don Gray from Flagstaff, Arizona. The mural is located on South Toppenish Avenue.

The following two images hanging on the wall in one of the local stores struck me as interesting. I don't have any supplimentary information about them beyond what is written on the second one.

Mural annotations Copyright © 2006 Yakima Valley Visitor Guide