Sparks Lake and South Sister

Edition Size: 45
16" X 20"
24" X 30"
30" x  40"
40" x  50"

'Wild columbine flowers hang over calm waters in a reflection of perfection'

f I had to pick one place to spend the rest of my life, it would be here at Sparks Lake. It possesses so much beauty and diversity of landscape, flora, and fauna that it astounds me every time I go there.

I arrived at the lake on a warm July evening in 1992 to scout photographs, hoping to create something special the next morning. As is often the case here, I was treated to a wonderful wildlife experience. I was walking back to camp at dusk and out on the tree scattered island, a deer scampered across my periphery only to be witnessed as a silhouette. I paused and questioned whether it was real or only imagined.

The next morning I rose at 5:00 o’clock and devoured a hot breakfast. Still having not identified a subject to photograph, I set out along the shoreline with all my senses tuned to the possibility. Soon I came to an overlook and spotted some red-orange color below and beyond the point. I began feeling the sense of anticipation I get when something special is about to happen. I moved down to the lake shore and waded across to the lava island where the Columbine flowers awaited me. This was it, and the time was now!

The sun had just peeked over the ridge line to the east bathing the scene in warm soft sunlight. I knew I had maybe 10 minutes to get set up and capture the image before the sunlight became too harsh. Would the wind blow and ripple the surface of the lake? I immediately switched from thinking to instinct. When I get my thinking mind out of the creative process and focus on, ‘how’ what I am seeing ‘feels’, my success rate rises dramatically. Before I knew it I had this beautiful composition locked in and began exposing film. After eight exposures, the air began to stir and the light became harsh. My door of opportunity had closed.

Since creating ‘Life in Balance,’ one of my greatest joys has been to swim out to this island and sit among the wildflowers observing hummingbirds feed on the plants and chase each other while defending their territories. Truly heaven on earth.


(Worth the wait!)