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Friday, February 14, 2020

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

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. 
~Robert Glenn Ketchum




Friday, February 14, 2020

The Daze of My Life:  Robert Glenn Ketchum, An Autobiography #187: Daze, #187:  As in my other commissions, this newest one offered to me by The Rincon Institute of Tucson, AZ involves a landscape I know little about, so as with the others, I begin to study the subject I am being asked to photograph. The Sonoran Desert covers an extensive area, flowing through parts of California, Arizona, Mexico, Baja, and Baja California Sur. It is a hot, dry environment, and hosts a sizable variety of unique, endemic plants, and animals, notably the saguaro and organ pipe cactus. Small sections of it are protected in two parts near the city of Tucson, and in the El Pinacate bioshpere reserve in northern Mexico, but aside from those locations, this desert represents a vast acreage of wild, and relatively undisturbed land. In the northern section of Saguaro National Monument, however, change is threatening the integrity of the park habitat, and that is why I have been brought in. A resort developer on the southern edge of the monument is proposing a large real estate development that will border the monument, interrupting, and in some cases, overwhelming, stream and riparian corridors that are part of the adjacent monument’s connected ecosystem. The Rincon Institute wants to start a campaign, whatever that might be, to prevent, or scale back that development, and they would like me to advise them as to what we might do, beyond just taking pictures. Gulp!
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photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2020 
@RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd

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Weekly Post, Late Fall High in the Sawtooths by Robert Glenn Ketchum

Late Fall High in the Sawtooths
by Robert Glenn Ketchum



My partner, Vicki Golden, and I, have come to love backpacking in late fall. Although we risk getting snowed upon, most of the bugs, and virtually all of the people are gone. This is our last camping trip together, and the last time I ever camped in the Sawtooths. This is a short blog to say goodbye to both.  
~Robert Glenn Ketchum





Friday, February 14, 2020

High in the Sawtooths, #23:
Sawtooths #23:  Not far from our tent, the trail we will follow out tomorrow, provides an overview of several summits and the canyon through which we will pass in retreat. The last sunset we viewed from this perch (posts #7 & #8), turned the rock faces into luminous displays of jigsaw granite, and then there was that full moonrise (post #10), so what might be offered up tonight? We are much later in the evening when we arrive at the viewpoint, because we have been lingering by the lakeshore, staring deeply into a remarkable reflection (last post). As a consequence, there is little illumination left on the the peaks. What does lie before us, however, is a different kind of visual drama. The slowly building weather of our afternoon, has passed us by without going off, but in drifting to the east, it has continued to build up, and it looks like it WILL precipitate a bit on the Salmon River valley, below us. The darkening sky is a nice foil to the glowing summits still basking in the final rays, but the show is the cloud build up that is still being fueled by the warmth of sunlight at higher altitudes than us. This show is still to play out, so we take a seat, and break out the last of our snacks. Normally Belle does not like thunder and lightening, but even she realizes the events that are soon to begin, are far away from us, and we are just here for the show, so she settles in to watch with no anxieties. A good time can be had by all. It has been an extraordinary day, it is NOT over yet, and we are still raging on.

photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2019, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd

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Thursday, February 13, 2020

Welcome to Hotel California: Some Pictures from My Backyard by Robert Glenn Ketchum

Welcome To Hotel California:  Some Pictures From My Backyard
by Robert Glenn Ketchum



I was born, and grew up in Los Angeles. As my professional career developed, I traveled around the world working on various commissions, but seldom had opportunities to work in California. Nonetheless, I always came back “home,” and when there, I occasionally took pictures. For ten years I also taught a photography workshop on the Mendocino coast that provided some great visual moments as well. There is no “project” unifying these images, they are just my way of showing, “You can check out any time you like, but you can never leave.”   ~Robert Glenn Ketchum




Thursday, February 13, 2020

Hotel California, Some Pictures From My Backyard, #25:
California #25:  The view from my bedroom window of the massive Sycamore tree in our front yard of my previous family home on Stone Canyon Road (Los Angeles, CA - Lit by the street light, and my momentary state-of-mind,..also lit - LOL!) Hey, I am livin’ it up at the Hotel California. In fact, that is directly across the street. Oh wait, that is the Hotel Bel Air, now domain of the evil Sultan. Glad I moved elsewhere. You can only put up with so much star-f*&%ing.

photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2020, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd

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Weekly Post, SUNDANCE: Artist-In-Residence by Robert Glenn Ketchum

SUNDANCE:  Artist In Residence
by Robert Glenn Ketchum



From 1987-1989, Robert Redford invited me to become the first visual Artist-In-Residence at his newly established Sundance Institute, part of the community he was building around his recently purchased ski resort in Utah. The residency provided me with subject matter that produced some of the most significant images of my career, but importantly, it also afforded me my first aerial work, a platform that would become increasingly important throughout my life. A limited amount of these images were ever published, and NONE of the aerials ever were. The best will now appear, please enjoy!  ~Robert Glenn Ketchum





Thursday, February 13, 2020

SUNDANCE: Artist In Residence, #83:
Sundance #83:  At Sundance, the invasion of smog from the Great Salt Lake basin on hot summer days not only occludes your breathing, but also the view. On days like this, I tried to stay indoors as much as possible, but when they arrived, they were visually so shocking, I often went out early and/or late in the day to make images like this as a record. Robert Redford allowed that I would have no “agenda” during my Artist-In-Residence at Sundance, but my pro-environmental defense of our planetary home seems to kick in anytime I am working, and I could not, NOT take pictures of this horrible haze-of-death when it appeared. In many of my pictures in this portfolio, I have used the fall hillsides, the early morning light blowing-up the colors, and the distant view, to create some dramatic, color-raging images, so this shot was irresistible because it is just the opposite. At a time when our president and HIS EPA have turned on the health of our people, and they are pressing to de-regulate the very laws that have helped correct this kind of urban air pollution, is this what you really want for your children - to have our cities look like Beijing, and our children playing soccer and football, while breathing this in? If not, you better step up and do something about it, because whether you like him or not, the collective politic is selling the public health down the river as I write this.
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2020, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd

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Wednesday, February 12, 2020

Weekly Post: STONED IMMACULATE: A Trip in the Desert by Robert Glenn Ketchum

STONED IMMACULATE:  A Trip in the Desert
by Robert Glenn Ketchum


As a young photographer, two places I “discovered” by chance greatly influenced both my photographic vision and my personal relationship with the greater planet. A previous blog, LIMEKILN, is the story of the first location. THIS is the second location which I discovered because my car broke down. As Jim Morrison/The Doors wrote, “Out here we is Stoned Immaculate!"



Wednesday, February 12, 2020
“Sensefex Sandstone"
circa 1985 -1995

Stoned Immaculate, #170:
Immaculate, #170:  from the portfolio, STONED IMMACULATE

photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2020, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd


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SOCIAL MEDIA by #LittleBearProd: @LittleBearProd
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Weekly Post, ARCTIC: At the Cutting Edge of Climate Change (#101-present)

ARCTIC:  At the Cutting Edge of Climate Change
by Robert Glenn Ketchum



In 1993, I began traveling to the Arctic. I have been across The Northwest Passage by yacht; to the North Pole twice; to little-visited Russian islands; and aboard research vessels in Greenland, Labrador, Newfoundland, and Baffin Island, taking the opportunity to visit Iqualuit, the capital of Nunavut, the recently created Inuit nation and territories.





Wednesday, February 12, 2020

ARCTIC:  At the Cutting Edge of Climate Change, #183:
ARCTIC, #183:   As our flight drops in altitude, the skies open up more, bathing the rugged terrain with a golden late light show. Ahead are some bays of water in the convoluted coastline, that host a few sizable icebergs, but in the spare landscape, I see no buildings and no airstrip in spite of our miles of visibility. Finally, I hear the pilots asking for acknowledgement from Eureka base, and the speaker cackles back with a disembodied voice, that they are happy to hear from us, wondered where we were, and are awaiting our arrival. That is followed by a, “You are good to land. We have great visibility, and it looks like a lovely evening here in the far north. Wind is off of the fjord, so passover and turn back for your approach.” Thankfully, it appears that after SO many hours, we have finally arrived. The listless guests about the plane have been aroused from their naps, and begin to stretch and shuffle in anticipation of finally disembarking, but I remain glued to my view portal, because “It ain’t over, ‘till it's over,” and I doubt I will ever be here again, so I want to make the most of it.

photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2020, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd

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Tuesday, February 11, 2020

Weekly Post, NO PEBBLE MINE: Pictures from Ground Zero (#301+) by Robert Glenn Ketchum

NO PEBBLE MINE Pictures from Ground Zero
by Robert Glenn Ketchum

 
Since 1998, I have been working to protect the spectacular resources of southwest Alaska and the fishery of Bristol Bay. Two Aperture books, a national traveling exhibition, a massive coalition of concerned users, and a lot of personal lobbying, had it looking like we were almost there. Then Donald Trump took office claiming he would always put America, and American jobs first. SO WHY destroy a BILLION-dollar-a-year, RENEWABLE salmon fishery and over 100,000 jobs for a group of international mineral speculators that will leave us with a Superfund site to clean up, and NO fishery left edible? And yet, he did,..so please, keep saying NO TO THE PEBBLE MINE!
~Robert Glenn Ketchum






Tuesday, February 11, 2020 

NO PEBBLE MINE #387, Pictures from Ground Zero
NO PEBBLE MINE #387:  River deltas pouring into the sea carry with them a tremendous silt load that is dispersed along the shores that surround the delta. You could see that in the low tide, mud flats when we left Dillingham (post #383). Now that we are approaching the Igushik River, the low tide is revealing another extensive area of flats that extends hundreds of yards out into the Pacific. Frequently, there are rich beds of shellfish in these shoals, but even bear do not venture too far out onto this unstable soil, as it can be like quicksand, and once stuck in it, it takes considerable effort to extricate oneself. Best to keep to the actual shore, and browse for things more closely at hand, like berries,..or dead whales, that have been washed up onto the more solid shore by the HIGH tide. As you can see from the mountains drawing ever nearer, our flight will soon round the long peninsula, and head true north once again, approaching the Togiak National Wildlife Refuge. At the moment, and at this angle, however, these mountains are more likely part of Wood-Tikchik State Park.

photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2020, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd @NRDC @OrvisFlyFishing #NoPebbleMine #LittleBearProd

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SOCIAL MEDIA by #LittleBearProd: @LittleBearProd
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Weekly Post: THE TONGASS: Stop the Cut, There are Salmon in the Trees (#100+) by Robert Glenn Ketchum

THE TONGASS:  Stop the Cut, There are Salmon in the Trees
by Robert Glenn Ketchum
In 1985, I began a 2-year commission to explore the Tongass rainforest, the largest forest in the United States Forest Service (USFS) system AND the largest temperate rainforest in the world. It was a unique, old-growth environment under siege from industrial logging. The resulting investigative book I published helped to pass the Tongass Timber Reform Bill, protect 1,000,000 acres of old-growth, and create 11 new wilderness areas. This is the story of how that was achieved.




Tuesday, February 11, 2020

THE TONGASS:  Stop the Cut, There are Salmon in the Trees, #181, Tongass, #181: Not all weasels are beautiful (last post), however. Some are “stinking weasels,” a classification to which this company is ascendant. This is the “home office” of Alaska Pulp and Lumber Company, and when I say “stinking weasels,” I mean quite literally, this place stinks. Pulping timber requires a lot of cooking and chemistry, and the process is odious. The practice of turning the Tongass, a rare, temperate rainforest into pulp is odious as well. This is the practice of corporate and political greed, this is NOT “more jobs for Alaskans.” This is the robbery from Alaskans of one of their greatest natural resources, and one that historically will attract more dollars in fishing and tourism, than any timber industry ever will. BUT HEY, that does not stop Senators Stevens, Murkowski, and Representative Don Young, from braying on about forest destruction being good for the economy. Even today Senator Lisa Murkowski is following this misrepresentation, started by an earlier generation. This is STUPID political leadership of the worst kind. The current governor is part of this group of jackasses, as well. If, and when, Alaskan voters wake up and realize what is actually happening to them in the real world, I can only hope they put all of these idiots in jail for crimes they are committing against the planet. The Tongass is one of the few remaining ecosystems of this size that serves to sequester carbon, and as the denied global warming, in FACT, descends on us, Alaskans are going to be among the first to have their world altered for the rest of their lives. “You don’t know what you’ve got ‘till it’s gone!” Joni Mitchell had it exactly right.

photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2020, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd

Follow Robert Glenn Ketchum's Photographic Activism Online:
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Monday, February 10, 2020

Weekly Post, High and Wild: Three Years of Wandering in the Wind Rivers

High and Wild: Three Years of Wandering in the Wind Rivers
by Robert Glenn Ketchum



After receiving my MFA from CalArts, I was invited by Bill Lund, Sharon Disney’s husband, to come stay at the families' Diamond-D Ranch in Dubois, Wyoming. Bill thought I might like to photograph in the nearby Wind River Mountains, which I did, backpacking through them extensively over the next three summers. Welcome to a world of big granite walls and huge alpine lakes!
~Robert Glenn Ketchum




Monday, February 10, 2020

High and Wild:  Three Years of Wandering in the Wind Rivers, #129, Wind Rivers, #129:  Although the clear skies above us, signal a colder night, for the moment our camp site at Deep Lake is awash in the glow of twilight, and the radiance of the setting sun, which is alighting the slab granite faces of the surrounding summits. Our tent is near the base of Haystack Mountain, on a raised shelf overlooking Deep, so to one side of us, the waters of the lake shimmer in the surreal blue light reflection of the perfectly clear sky, and on the other side is this (above) - the west face of Haystack, seeming to flow like molten gold, down into the valley below. It has been a cosmic day, and it is now being followed by a cosmic twilight. The smell of trout rises from our fire, our meals are nearly ready, and my black lab, Belle Star, is quite literally, motionless, sitting with a fixed stare on the sizable fish being fried. She will not only get some of the day’s catch, but we will drip the grease all over her dry kibble, so she can’t wait, and at the moment she is making sure the preparation is proceeding as planned. Vicki and I are of two minds at the moment - watching Belle’s intense focus on the food prep, which is hysterical, AND, we are also in awe, while watching the surrounding terrain radiating the final glow of daylight. There is still no one that has come up into this high basin to camp besides us, and so we have it to ourselves for yet another day, proving, “The Higher You Get, The Higher You Get.” Believe me, we are all very high right now!
photograph(s) © copyright, ROBERT GLENN KETCHUM, 2020, @RbtGlennKetchum @LittleBearProd #LittleBearProd


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Orvis Supports No Pebble Mine

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