Creatures of Erosion – A Beach Rorschach

A very low tide at Santa Barbara, California’s East Beach reveals a sea wall whose barnacles, mussels, and erosion combine to suggest some magical creatures. Anyway, that is what I see. How about you?

A fantastical biped with another grazing behind?

A fantastical quadruped with another grazing behind?

The creatures look even more mysterious in shadow:

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Here are some close-ups of the creature’s hide:

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Note the anemones nestled at the creature’s feet:

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Eerie Erosion

The WP Weekly Photo Challenge wants to see eerie in black and white.

An unusually low tide exposed this heavily eroded metal sea wall at East Beach in Santa Barbara, CA.  I wondered if it was possible to strip the beauty from an ocean photo. To convert beauty to eerie,  I changed the image to black and white and then tinted using Photoshop. This was as eerie as I could get.  I believe the answer is no. Even post-apocalypse, sun on ocean remains beautiful.


Photoshopped. I like the way the sun bleeds into the water.

The original image.

The original image.

Rock Rorschach

If you read this blog much, you know I like to see stuff in other stuff.

Here is a rock that sits right in the surf on a Santa Barbara beach. It’s got a big hollow with ever-changing sand deposits.  Last time I was at this beach, the rock looked like a fossil shark tooth to me. What do you see?

What do you see?

What do you see?

Later that day, the surf developed the rock’s next persona:

Tide coming in.

Tide coming in.

(The Weekly Photo Challenge wants to see lines and patterns.)

I Had Better Get Busy

My “desert island” food is the blueberry. My “desert island” place is the ocean. Which proves convenient: I don’t have to bring my favorite place with me to the desert island, it will already surround me.

Desert island. Typing that phrase, I realize how comfortable I am using language when I don’t entirely know what it means. That must get me into trouble sometimes but apparently I don’t know when that happens.

Desert island. Somewhere remote and cut-off, I figure. Checking that infallible source of information, the internet, I learn that a desert island is an island that is not inhabited by humans.

(Sue’s first rule of blogging: start with a digression. Or four.)

Here’s the point: I love the ocean but I have only been to two of them.  Mostly the Pacific. Occasionally the Atlantic. Surely I need to see the others, and visit them from more than one location. Which means I had better get busy and travel faster.

Here is what the Atlantic Ocean looked like during my visit to a Florida beach:

The Atlantic Ocean from a beach in central Florida.

The Atlantic Ocean at sunset from a beach in central Florida.

At this beach it was not a good idea to walk while enjoying the view. There were dead jellyfish everywhere! I don’t know whether this was typical for this area. Perhaps I visited during a time of jellyfish affliction.

Dead jellyfish covered the beach like land mines.

It was a beach of dead jellyfish land mines.

(In response to this Weekly Photo Challenge.)

My Most Potent Energy Source

The ocean is my place. It’s where I go to revive, invigorate, find peace. At the shore I feel connected to all that underlies our everyday lives.

I love the way the shorebirds run out as the surf recedes, run back as it returns. They are so in tune with the pattern of the waves and the movements of the other birds. And it often feels like they are playing as well as eating.

Ventura Beach, California, 2008

Ventura Beach, California, 2008

(In response to this Weekly Photo Challenge.)

The Gull, the Rocks, and the Sea

I don’t like seagulls much, but this one did nothing offensive during the brief time we were together. Anyway there can’t always be pelicans.

Ocean with gull, in landscape mode.

Ocean with gull, in landscape mode.

Ocean with gull, in portrait mode.

Ocean with gull, in portrait mode.

These photos show a glimpse of beach at San Clemente, CA, where it is always this beautiful.

(This week’s Photo Challenge wants to see one image shot two ways.)

All the Blues Imaginable

One of the great treats about being alive and on this planet is getting to see the ocean at sunrise and sunset. I am always staggered by the number of different colors in the water. I’ve yet to get a photo that comes close to capturing it, but maybe that’s okay. Because I don’t have a photo I need to keep going back to see the real thing.

The full moon sets and the sun rises at Carlsbad Beach, San Diego County, California

The full moon sets and the sun rises at Carlsbad Beach, San Diego County, California

(Posted for the latest Weekly Photo Challenge.)