Wild Africa -- This summer we spent three weeks on safari in Botswana, Zambia, and Zimbabwe. Thus, the featured photo each month, for a while, will no doubt be of some of the wildlife we shot (using only my camera) on the trip as you can see by the featured photos for September and October. It was an amazing trip (we were in southern Africa for just a few days short of two months). If you have a chance to go, do not pass up the opportunity. Meanwhile, take a look at a just a few of the great shots I got of the African wildlife in the folder Wild Africa.
To Live in Wild Africa -- During January and February 2014 I have a one-man show in the VAM Gallery at the First Evangelical Free Church in Austin, Texas. The show features shots from our safari in Africa this past summer. This is my statement for the show --
When our children were little, we read to them Maurice Sendak’s little book Where the Wild Things Are. It is a book for children, but Sendak has a way of speaking truth not only to children but to grownups. Sendak taught us we need a world where wild things live and thrive. We understand intuitively that something in our world is out of order when we cage animals like elephants, giraffes, lions. A case could be made that it is better to see the wildlife of the earth in a zoo than not to see them at all. Our world would be deeply impoverished were there no blue whales, or wolves, or rhinoceroses. One of the great sins humans commit against God’s creation is the profligate and perfidious poaching that has left some wildlife, like the black rhino, all but extinct. Surely, we need zoos to protect the animals. Though such a case could be made, we still know at the deepest levels of our being that the wild creatures of the earth were not meant to be caged. How much better it is to see them in their natural state as they roam freely over the earth in their natural habitat. Sendak’s book and, by extension, the zoos of the world present to us a parable. Men and women were not made to be put in cages. Our natural state is to be in the wild. That is, to be free. The case can be made that for fallen man there is need for control. But though fallen, man is still the image of God, and his fallenness is a most unnatural state. One of the great sins of authorities from those who rule the mightiest of nations to those who chair the lowliest of committees is the oppressive effort to control those under their authority. Little wonder that Thoreau should quote the motto current in his day, “That government is best which governs least.” We humans need what the animals need – freedom. An ancient teacher of truth once wrote, “It is for freedom that Christ has set us free.” We need a world where adventure is a part of daily life, where we have opportunity to explore the wilds that exist in our own being. We need not control but a new heaven and a new earth wherein righteousness dwells. Another ancient teacher wrote the rule of the new creation, “Love God and do as you please.” I have included in this show a few older works that I hope will evoke the spirit of adventure that our Lord Jesus has made a part of the created order. But especially, as you view the wildlife, I hope you will envision that for which we were made and redeemed – to live in a wild Africa.
Two Featured Photos for June --For the month of June there are two featured images, the two images that will be on display in the administrative offices of the Dallas Zoo. I hope you enjoy the images.
The Texas Arts and Crafts Fair -- This weekend (May 25, 26) is the Texas Arts and Crafts Fair in Kerrville. We will have our booth set up and will be showing my photographs. There will be live music too, so come on out and enjoy the party.
The 8th Annual Art Fest of Port Aransas -- This weekend we will be in Port Aransas for the 8th Annual Art Fest put on by the Art Center for the Islands. The show will be at Robert's Point Park between the ferry and the marina. If you have some time ... or better, you need to make the time to come spend a relaxing weekend on the beach at Port A. And while you are there enjoying the wind and the waves, the sun and the sea, come by Robert's Point Park and see all the great art that will be on display.
Paw Prints -- Last weekend we were in Dallas for Paw Prints, the first ever art show at the Dallas Zoo. We were unexpectantly and pleasantly surprised when the CEO of the Dallas Zoo came by our booth and bought two of my African wild animal canvas prints to hang in the new administrative offices of the zoo.
Artist Statement -- Photographs document the world we live in. But photographs are much more than documents. Photographs become a way to see the world we live in. A photograph captures a moment in time, shows us something in new light, and reflecting on what we now have leisure to see, we gain new insight.
My wife and I have had the good fortune to wander a little, and so I want to show you some of the things we have seen both here in Texas and in other interesting places in our world, places such as South Africa, China, Peru.
This little collection of photos is not merely a record of where we have been. I hope you will see something beautiful. A photograph can open a window on a world we may not know first hand. And when we open that window, we may find a world familiar after all. What at first seemed strange and exotic we discover we know upon reflection, as though we had opened a window on a new world to find home.
If you want to ask a question about any of the photos, if you want to make inquiries, drop me an email. I would be happy to answer your questions. Look around, take your time, leave a comment, enjoy!