LBJ Photography Blog
This blog features notes on image creation sessions, photographic lighting, and image editing techniques. Our main website can be found at: http://lbjphotography.com
Art Comes Naturally--This Man is Amazingly Talented
February 16, 2018
Meet Ray. He has never had an art course in his life, but he can draw nearly anything—and the result looks real. Growing up in a neighborhood with problems, his mother disallowed her boys from “hanging out”. Rather she provided them with a workshop and the tools to make models. Today, Ray makes the most intricate dioramas, draws and paints the most realistic pictures, and can create or re-create anything shown to him. Check out Ray's WWII diorama: Link to Dioramas
Hueco (pronounced: Waco—long a) Tanks State Park,
February 8, 2018
Hueco means “hollow”, and this state park is filled with huecos which fill when it rains (tanks). This habitat is so unusual for the desert with the existence of live oaks, salamanders, and frogs (seasonal) in addition to cacti, mesquite, and amaranth, one of the most nutritious grains to be found in the world . It's no wonder that after 200 shovel digs, archeologists have found life 90 cm under the paths we walked to arrive at sites of pictographs and petroglyphs. Wondering what the difference was between a pictograph and petroglyph, we were told by Alex Mares, our ½ Navajo guide, that a pictograph is painted, but a petroglyph is carved. Looking at the walls of rock, our first thought was that graffiti was covering the ancient artwork, but we were informed that a date prior to 1906 (National Park System) and 1945 (Texas State Parks) is not considered graffiti because it is a part of history and may have been carved by Texas rangers, stage coach passengers, or Pony Express riders. At the beginning of our hike we were humbled when told we were entering sacred ground; prior to his introduction Alex had privately asked a blessing upon all of us (which he said every Navajo is expected to do prior to entering sacred ground). “What makes this sacred ground?” He responded with an analogy: a judge was asked, “How do you define pornography?”; answer: “I know it when I see it.”
February 9, 2018
Wittara and Ki are huddled together working on some type of project. What's happening? Ki explains, “I'm showing Wittara how to make a dream catcher from a devil's claw. These devil's claw grow outside my backyard and are growing wild throughout the desert. They propagate not by the wind taking their seeds but by hoofed horses or cattle entangling a devil's claw on its hoof and carrying it distances before it drops away.”
Water in the Desert
February 3, 2018
Leasburg State Park
The Native Americans knew! The settlers didn't. By subtle changes in the color of the landscape or plant growth, those eyes of the Native Americans could gauge how to travel through the desert without succumbing to thirst. It helps that the water table is high which answers the question, “Why is there water in the Rio Grande when it is dammed?” The river above the dam has NO water at all, but below the dam it does. Why is that? Explained to us by Alex Mares, ½ Navajo ranger guide, the water you see below the dam is not river water at all but ground water seeping through the mud.
February 5, 2018
Hugs! Lou and I shared smiles and warm hugs with Ray and Esperanza. Sharing in the woodcarving experience with them last year, we finally met up with them a week into our stay in Las Cruces. This couple has more talent in their little fingers than Lou and I have in our entire bodies collectively.
Esperanza's latest venture is flower making, an art she learned from her cousin who took classes in Mexico. She offered to show how the procedure is followed, and after one morning of observation, the product was a stunning arrangement of colorful flowers which NEVER fade.
Lou and Bonnie Janelle (LBJ) are career professionals who are currently pursuing life-long interests in photography and digital imaging techniques, respectively.