No wonder Real de Catorce, set high in the Sierra Madre Oriental in Mexico, is a designated “Pueblo Magico”. Making my way into the heart of the town through a long, dark tunnel that pierces through a forbidding mountain (the only way to access the town if you’re not on horseback or walking), while on the back of a rickety pick-up truck, I was suddenly catapulted into another period...
While we often associate "living walls" with flora they can also be alive with visual art. Ever since landscape designers and plant enthusiasts such as Patrick Blanc, launched this vertical gardens "movement" throughout Europe a few decades ago, we've been offered surfaces teeming with sedums, ferns, moss and so much more.
Concurrently, street art, also known as graffiti art, has also been flourishing in towns and particularly, cities throughout the world. As no surprise, Mexico, famous for its murals back in Diego Rivera's day, is also awash with creative and fanciful outdoor murals. Many have a social justice message too.
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We all need humor in our lives, especially today. This little visual offering is about not taking things too seriously. It brings to mind Milan Kundera's title to his book: "The Unbearable Lightness of Being".
These rather simple photographs — more like snapshots from my iPhone 6, were taken in Italy, Mexico, and the Berkshires. They share a common theme: people or things that may also bring a smile to your face. Not particularly artistic, they simply hold a quirky flare.
From the sea to a river, a lagoon or simply a bubbling fountain, water captivates the full spectrum of our senses. The sound of pounding waves or a trickling stream, the inebriating scent of ocean water, the refreshing spray from a sprinkler on a hot summer day and, of course, its ephemeral beauty will always allure. Be it in flux or tranquil and reflective, it never ...
Cacti and agaves, both succulents but of very different plant families, continue to be a source of fascination. Be they round, tubular, columnar, or sinewy, their majestic forms intrigue and inspire. With their quasi-indomitable nature that can withstand scalding sun, drought and the harsh conditions of desert environments, they beg for ...
Last spring, my husband, David and I decided we'd try something new: Thanksgiving in Hawaii with our three now grown kids. Years ago, when they were very young, we enjoyed an exotic Thanksgiving in Luxor, Egypt where the waiters wore fancy white turbans and the cranberry sauce was made with unknown ingredients. This time it would be mango, red pepper, ginger, curry and many more ingredients. READ MORE
Today, on November 2nd, as I opened Google I was greeted by a purple "papel picado" or Mexican lacey paper flag. In San Miguel de Allende, Halloween or el Dia de los Muertos has become a big deal. Here, the ex-pat community has contributed alot of imagination and creativity into what has been an ancient tradition stemming from a blend of Christianity and paganism.
This series of photographs emerged while traveling recently in southern Italy. Digging a little further into this trainscape theme I rediscovered images I took on a Metro North train between Wassaic, NY and Grand Central Station. Here in the Berkshires, Massachusetts however, with barely a functioning train, I've simply shot old rusty train tracks with wooden cross ties stained with tar. Walking along the tracks led to a defunct bridge above the Housatonic River.
For years when I'd hear the words, "Dog Days of Summer" a nostalgic image would come to mind: my old Golden retriever, Sandy, taking a nap on a sultry day under our umbrella of a white pine tree. As I recently learned though, "Dog Days of Summer" goes back to the Greeks' Orion the Hunter's dog star, Sirius ...
There is something beautiful, noble and, at times, deeply poignant about many of the older women I have encountered here in Mexico over the past few years. I have felt privileged to photograph the señoras you will see here in various contexts, places and times of the year. Be it in Oaxaca to the south, Veracruz to the east or San Miguel de Allende in the heart of the country where I spend six months of the years, they have a way of drawing me in. Some I have come to know well; others have been chance encounters including surreptitious photo moments. Call them "opportunities"...
This past winter while inching my way along dirt paths in Oaxaca, my eyes were often glued to the sky. They could also suddenly shift to surrounding brush and trees. Not alone, I had joined a group of birdwatchers — serious birdwatchers. Tagging along with them on this ten day trip, I was reminded daily of being an enthusiastic novice. However, I'm also a “card carrying” member of the almost 50 year old Sociedad Audubon de Mexico, giving me a certain credibility ... Read More
A few years ago, when I first saw Azteca dances all with intense drumming in the Jardin, or main square bordered by the Parroquia, a Parrish church in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico, I was back in the Southwest. The bright and elaborate costumes consisting of headdresses with feathers of every color of the rainbow, the beaded gowns, and rattles on ankles, also took me back to another, Pre-Columbian era. READ MORE
While sipping a cappuchino one cool morning at the café Buen Dia, in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico, Colleen Swenson, a tall attractive woman with a full head of straight salt and pepper hair, spoke about the issue of “tagging” in town. Naïve as I am, I had never heard the term... READ MORE:
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Wandering about the Colonia de Guadelupe in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico, a couple of years ago, I couldn’t help noticing its profusion of enchanting and sophisticated street art. Scattered about the neighborhood’s narrow, twisted cobblestoned streets were extensive painted walls in all colors of the rainbow. READ MORE
Exploring the ever-changing streetscape of San Miguel de Allende invariably leads to passing by, glimpsing, smiling or staring while taking a break on a metal bench in the Jardin (plaza) under the pruned ficus trees resembling more flattened ice cream cones, interacting with — and photographing people. READ MORE
Here in Mexico, el Dia de los Muertos or the Day of the Dead, is one of the most cherished holidays of the year. (And I say "holiday" because while it is about death it's also about the celebration of life.) Not just one day it encompasses four. November 1st and 2nd are the holiest of the days when now lost relatives and friends are invited to visit. Be it at the cemetery or at a candle-lit altar at home, overflowing with ofrendas or offerings, it is a sacred time. READ MORE
While traveling recently in October in New Mexico, I discovered myself photographing crosses. A pattern began to emerge in what the license plate calls the: “Land of Enchantment”. Inspired by my random encounter with the crosses in all shapes and sizes while exploring the majestic and stark mountains and canyons and the adobe pueblos, I couldn't help but be drawn to them. READ MORE
Numerous studies show how our response to colors goes beyond esthetic preferences. As human beings we have a limited range of colors we can perceive. Much is also determined by language. (Think of how many words exist in the languages of the Arctic people for the color white. Subtleties exist for them we may not even perceive because of English.) Read More...
AUTUMN ORNAMENTALS is an article I recently published in Berkshire Food + Travel's FLORA section. Taft Farms, Windy Hill Farm, Bella Flora and Cedar Farm are all mentioned, and my photographs of each venue are in the story, as well. Read the story here ...
While living in Mexico a few months ago and downloading photos on my laptop at the end of the day, I began to notice a thread running through them. Almost unconsciously I was being drawn to photographing twins, double doors, a pair of cowboy boots, two styrofoam cups, or a pair of Christmas lights. The list goes on.Read More