July Fourth on the Water

We were in Traverse City, Michigan, during last year’s Fourth of July celebrations. Fireworks over the Grand Traverse Bay have some added drama, but the area is so far north (and west in its time zone) that the sky still hadn’t fully darkened.

Bicycles, Boats, and Explosions

After the main show has finished, private citizens produce their own displays up and down the beach.

Stochastic Trajectories

Fishing on Lake Cahuilla

At one level, this is a calming, nostalgic image: two people fishing from a causeway over Lake Cahuilla reservoir in Coachella Valley.

The layers of reflections and horizontal lines, however, give it a very surreal, Dali-esque topology: reality doesn’t quite seem to be shaped correctly here. Space is folded in on itself.

Fishing on Lake Cahuilla

Shores of Lake Cahuilla

Apparently the original Lake Cahuilla was a prehistoric lake in the Coachella Valley; its modern recreation is a reservoir in the hills outside town. The relationship between humans and nature in the region is well-encapsulated by that point of comparison.

Shores of Lake Cahuilla

Sunset Beyond Long Lake

Good landscape photography is all about finding the perfect vantage point and being patient. Sometimes, however, real life demands a bit more serendipity. While there are incredible views to be had in the Adirondacks, there are also long sections locked between walls of forest. When there’s a once-in-a-summer sky overhead, patience gives way to reaching a lake before the moment disappears.

Sunset Beyond Long Lake

Beach Fireworks

After the big Traverse City fireworks show over Lake Michigan, Americans on the shores continue to set off their own fireworks. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: this is pretty much the equivalent of kids in the movie theater parking lot hitting each other with plastic lightsabers after a Star Wars movie lets out.

Beach Fireworks

Tug Boat & Fireworks

Part of me wants to imagine that watching fireworks from the stern of a WWII-era tug would be a perfect summer experience… But another part wonders about the chipping paint and rust, hard corners and suspects that there might be some subtleties to perfecting the viewing location.
Tug Boat & Fireworks

Fireworks by the Grand Traverse Bay

More than any of the other Traverse City fireworks shots I’ve presented so far, I think this one captures the essence of summer: little Lake Michigan waves lapping at the shore, soft beaches, boats moored to piers, and the pair of people relaxing on the rocks in the foreground. They’re the most intriguing part of the image, to me: when everyone else is looking to the sky, what is interesting them more than the fireworks?

Fireworks by the Grand Traverse Bay