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Monday, October 24, 2016

The Higher You Get, The Higher You Get by Robert Glenn Ketchum

by Robert Glenn Ketchum

Growing up my parents had a home near Sun Valley, Idaho. It was there that I learned to ski. Over many years I befriended members of the Decker Flat Climbing and Frisbee Club, with whom I had both life, and art-forming outdoor experiences. I had my camera, and these are my adventures.  Enjoy!!  ~Robert Glenn Ketchum

Monday, October 24, 2016

The Higher You Get, The Higher You Get - Sun Valley and the DFC&FC, #25:
THE HIGHER YOU GET, THE HIGHER YOU GET - Sun Valley and the DFC&FC, #25:  One afternoon as the the Corvair and I fishtailed our way north on a snowy Highway #75 the storm we were driving around in began to abate. Somewhere in the early approach to the Boulder Mtns. the sky brightened and and the clouds seemed to be lifting, so I thought I would park at the plow-out near the foothills where we had gone sliding (posts #15-#17) and watch to see if the Boulders would "appear." As so often happens for photographers, you may not get the picture you thought you might, but you DO get something great you did not expect at all. That was certainly the case this afternoon. After getting out of the car and slogging around a bit in the new snowfall, the Boulders did not reveal themselves as I had hoped, BUT those smooth hills and valleys we went sliding through sure did. A few years later, after college graduation and my actual move to Ketchum/Sun Valley, I began to sell my best images as signed,limited edition Cibachrome prints and this image, "Bowls and Ridges" was one of the first to sell out - thank you Gail Severn!
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2016, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd
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Where It All Began: LIMEKILN CREEK by Robert Glenn Ketchum

Where It All Began:  Limekiln Creek by Robert Glenn Ketchum

In 1967, I discovered Limekiln Creek on the Big Sur Coast in California. Among those redwoods, I had an epiphany as a young artist. As a photographer, most of the skills I would use, I would learn there. Many years later in a mature career, I helped the American Land Conservancy acquire this property for the California State Park system. This is the story of a very personal place.

Monday, October 24, 2016

Where It All Began:  Limekiln Creek, #43
Where It All Began - Limekiln Creek, #43:  In 2006, my career-long trail of "colorful leaves" led to this. Many factors were involved. The wet darkroom had all but disappeared, and most photographers, especially those my age, chose to embrace the new digital darkroom simply to make their pictures "better." Then, the Amon Carter Museum (TX) organized a 45-year retrospective exhibit of my work that was as complete a display of my career as I might have ever hoped for. Lastly, the embroidery guild I was working with in China felt that OUR success led other guilds to copy us and work with photographs, so they wanted to move in a new direction, one that would be more difficult to imitate. This confluence of events caused me to decide not just to explore the new digital world, BUT TO JUMP IN! As the Chinese, I also wanted to break away, in this case, from the "traditions" of myself. I, and they, had always honored my "full-frame," uncropped, unmanipulated image, a signature of all my work. The Chinese actually prefer a design with taller, narrower panels, in groups of 6, not 3 & 4 dictated by my photographs rendered in embroidery. For me, the starting point of this new visual journey - this EVOLUTION - was an early-80's 4x5 transparency of fall leaves against a wet brick wall in New England. I cropped a tall, thin rectangle out of it that was particularly rhythmic and colorful - and then I began to explore. The first panel on the left is the original, UN-altered color image. A goal of my design was to give the embroiderers a chance to show off colors that we had not found "in nature" (my other work) but they could certainly create in their dyes - and Adobe was happy to help me. For the second panel, I simply flipped the first and began to color and manipulate digitally. I sought to change every panel significantly, and yet have them "flow" together. Entitled, "CHOOSE JOY", these panels are 6-FEET! tall and about 30" wide, so on the wall this is 6' x 12'-14' feet wide depending on the installation. The EVOLUTION series is now 24-panels long. If you are interested to see the rest, go here, click on PHOTOGRAPHS, click on NEW DIGITAL.
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2016, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd, #LittleBearProd, ALC (@american_land), Monterey Pop Festival (@MontereyPopFest)

Friday, October 21, 2016

The Daze of My Life: Robert Glenn Ketchum, An Autobiography

Biographies are studies of someone's life based on cumulative research. Good ones may reveal something, but probably barely scratch the surface of what actually went on. The internet is allowing me to do something VERY different. 
~Robeert Glenn Ketchum

Friday, October 21, 2016

The Daze of My Life:  Robert Glenn Ketchum, An Autobiography #16:
The Daze of My Life, #16:  Besides working at Kaleidoscope and photographing bands in clubs on the Sunset Strip, I was also fully engaged as a student at UCLA. The reason I even picked up a camera in the first place involved trying to satisfy breadth requirements in the arts in my freshman year, and thus I found myself in a "beginning" photography class that was taught by Edmund Teske. Teske was an unusual character to say the least, but he was brilliant at stimulating our ideas and making us think about what a photograph was and how you made one. On the FIRST day of class, he said because he was old and shot with a view camera, he wanted us to put all of our much newer cameras on his desk, so he could see what we were shooting with. After we all obliged, he left class to get a cardboard box from the darkroom, and then ceremoniously put all of our cameras in the box, taking it back to the darkroom area and locking in an equipment locker. When he returned to class he announced, "Now we are going to learn to make photographs." He was right. The above is a 20"x 24" print made by putting flowers and puffy seeds between glass and making a "contact" print in the sunlight. The color is my additional touch.
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2016, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd
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My Life in the Garden of Eden by Robert Glenn Ketchum

My Life in the Garden of Eden
by Robert Glenn Ketchum

As part of paying the bills in my professional career, I photographed a number of significant gardens. I helped create several pretty amazing ones as well. Some of these pictures have been published in various books, but most have never been seen. In this blog, I will show you all my best garden images AND discuss garden design.

Friday, October 21, 2016

My Life in the Garden of Eden, #16:
Garden of Eden, #16:  Regardless of garden size, "islands" of plantings allow concentrated and selective watering, and exposure to sunlight. Paths between the islands provide the access to weed and cultivate, not to mention, enjoy the view. Islands offer something to observe from every viewable direction, and they also dimensionalize a landscape, as one island behind another accents the depth in a garden. Here in the beautiful sprawl of the VERY LARGE gardens of Lotusland, islands of bromeliads flourish beneath the shade of massive oak trees, and paths wander through. Precisely as I suggested, the paths and the islands give this landscape as sense of deep space and scale that adds to the fact it is already as large as it is. Walking into the shady canopy to view this expanse is, quite literally, breathtaking.
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2016, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd
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Thursday, October 20, 2016

Welcome to SUZHOU, 1985 - to the present by Robert Glenn Ketchum

Welcome to Suzhou, 1985 - to the present by Robert Glenn Ketchum

During the reign of Mao (1949-1976), China was a closed country. China in the 1980’s was 80% rural, with no outside visitors, particularly from the West. When China opened to travelers, the Chinese government placed severe limitations on who was allowed to enter the country. These photographs are a continuation of other ongoing blog threads of the first glimpses into China in the mid-1980’s by world-renowned Conservation Photographer 
Robert Glenn Ketchum.

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Welcome to Suzhou, 1985 - to the present, #140
Suzhou #140:  Another of the changes it was good to see over my 30yrs of visiting Suzhou involves the caring-for of gardens and plantings. In the early posts of this blog, #42-#43 & #52, I showed you a garden and potted bonsai trees behind my hotel at the time, where things were mostly abandoned, and eventually the bonsai's were unpotted and sold off. The good news is that they were sold to hotels and companies that repotted them and they are now receiving a new, and much better, level of care. In fact, hotel and corporate gardens are spruced up daily, and as you see here, the concept of "bonsai" has grown to a much larger scale. This is the front of a hotel on a major boulevard. Look how nicely kept the plantings are. I suppose it is therefore inevitable that I saw this printed on the wheel cover of a Range Rover SUV: "Prada: Beautiful Nature Is Our Precious Property." A Range Rover SUV? Prada? Suzhou? What?????
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2016, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #China #Suzhou

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SILK ROAD - Embroideries of Robert Glenn Ketchum

Silk Road - Embroideries of Robert Glenn Ketchum

The city of Suzhou, China, produced China's most beautiful silk and silk embroidery practiced by generational families for 3,000 years. My purpose in going to China starting in the mid-1980's was to turn my photographs into textiles, and this is my story. ~Robert Glenn Ketchum

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Silk Road - Embroideries #196
SILK ROAD #196:  Moving to the right side of the image, this detail includes the entire yellow tree. Each of the background trees is treated slightly differently in "Old Tree in Autumn Forest" and in this case fairly detailed and descriptive stitching has created the first "layer." Rather than morphing into different stitches as the rendering moves up the tree which you saw being done in the last post, here the "base" layer of leaves is relatively consistent. Created primarily with very tight, tubular stitches, this layer clearly "rises" above the darker and more randomly stitched background because it has volume. THEN COMES THE UNTRADITIONAL MOMENT - on top of this first layer of "leaves," random, looping stitches in widely varying sizes have been added rather abstractly. Look carefully and you will see them everywhere, and clearly some are big and sprawling and do not serve as description of anything. To me this a pinnacle moment in the workshop as this embroidery, for all of it's representation, is actually an abstract masterpiece of stitching and more playful and free of tradition than the embroiderers have ever been before.
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2016, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #Embroidery @WesCFA @RSSDesigns

Thursday, September 15, 2016

NRDC & IUCN in Politico - #NoPebbleMine

Since the International Union for the Conservation of Nature @IUCN has recommended protecting southwest AK and Bristol Bay from the industrial development of the Pebble mine, Joel Reynolds, @NRDC (Natural Resources Defense Council), and I want to be sure our political leaders are aware of their resolution, so yesterday, this ad dropped in POLITICO.

Contact President Obama and the @EPA and tell them now is the time to act to permanently protect this remarkable ecosystem and the invaluable fishery. Now THE WORLD really is watching!

~Robert Glenn Ketchum

NRDC at the IUCN World Conservation Congress - #NoPebbleMine

Working with my good friend, Joel Reynolds and his amazing staff at @NRDC (Natural Resources Defense Council), who hosted a reception for the International Union for Conservation of Nature @IUCN World Conservation Congress attendees in Hawaii...

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Earth To Pebble Mine: Stay Away From Bristol Bay. World Conservation Congress Registers Overwhelming International Opposition to Mega-Mine That Threatens Bristol Bay’s Wild Salmon Fishery by Joel Reynolds

Earth To Pebble Mine: Stay Away From Bristol Bay. World Conservation Congress Registers Overwhelming International Opposition to Mega-Mine That Threatens Bristol Bay’s Wild Salmon Fishery

by Joel Reynolds,
Western Director and Senior Attorney, NRDC, Los Angeles

A new chapter opened today in the battle against the proposed Pebble Mine, as the World Conservation Congress overwhelmingly adopted a motion opposing the embattled mega-mine and other large-scale mining in the Bristol Bay region of southwest Alaska and urging the U.S. government to prevent the issuance of permits. With this action, an international body has for the first time formally joined longstanding opposition to the massive copper and gold project — a project that, for years, has been the focus of a relentless, broad-based campaign in Alaska and the lower 48 states to stop it.

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

TATSHENSHINI: Saving a River Wild

TATSHENSHINI:  Saving a River Wild by Robert Glenn Ketchum

In 1990, I was invited on a 10-day float down the Tatshenshini, a huge river system flowing from Western Canada to the Pacific Ocean that literally divides two of North America's largest national parks, Canada's Kluane National Park and Alaska's Glacier Bay National Park. A gold mine was being proposed mid-river. I broke the story in LIFE magazine. There were many other articles and a book. The mine was never developed and the river is now a wilderness corridor. This is a conservation SUCCESS story!

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

TATSHENSHINI:  Saving a River Wild, #115
TATSHENSHINI - Saving a River Wild, #115:  Looking back at where we had come from on the previous evening, you can see that there is some open water close to the shore. It is very shallow here, so the larger bergs ground before reaching this point. The ice that is here is small enough that most of it can be pushed around and thus the guides have gone back into the water to pull the rafts through and around the obstacles in these shallows, and get them over to the open water of the outflowing Alsek river below the massive ice jam. Once again our collective camp trudges the gear across the broad beach to where the boats will be reloaded. Having finished that, most of us are pondering our last views of this place and I am marveling that we made it at all. Again, scale fails me, BUT that blue berg is the size of a small house. It, and those really dirty ones on either side, have completely sealed off ANY path through where we past last night. As we would eventually learn, the next six river float groups to follow during the ensuing week had to be picked up by helicopter from the bar where we had our late lunch. There was NO passage through this to the outlet and no one could float on to the airstrip pick-up.
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2016, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd #Tatshenshini @glacierbaynps @Life @Wilderness #WeAreTheWild  @nature_AK
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