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Roxborough State Park is about a 40 minute drive south of Denver, Colorado. The protected land sits at the foot of the front range and features dramatic red sandstone that spears the earth at a sharp angle. These giant outcroppings are part of the Fountain Formation; the same formation responsible for the radical landscapes that make up Garden of the Gods and Rock Rocks Amphitheater.

The rocks are massive, but fragile — crumbling by the lightest touch. Fortified granite rises abruptly to the west, in stark contrast to the delicate sandstone. Blistering sunlight scorches the burnt red sediment. Lack of rain leaves the surrounding brush pale and abrasive. The land vibrates with heat.

nikon n6000 | 28-200mm f/3.8-5.6 | fujicolor 200

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 Phrao | St. Louis Magazine Feature

Phrao | St. Louis Magazine Feature

I met with Jeannette Cooperman in early May to discuss my book, Phrao. We talked about how perspectives change the more involved in a project you become, and how important it is to honor the story. We also talked about workflow, and the necessity to keep creative work moving forward. The discussion was deeply fulfilling and it was inspiring to hear such an accomplished writer share her thoughts on my work.  It is a great honor to have the story of Phrao shared with the St. Louis Magazine readership.

Phrao is available for purchase through my store or at Subterranean Books in St. Louis, MO.

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The first group of bees came in early April. They were shipped in a wooden box overnight USPS. A fine wire mesh was stapled over one end where the bees could be seen clinging to the sides. My father had been prepping for their arrival for months — nailing together wooden boxes and fastening frames. He painted the first hive bright yellow. 

This is his first foray into the world of beekeeping and it has been amazing to watch the process. It took months, starting with stacks of DIY beekeeping books and youtube videos; then gathering materials and spending hours nailing, gluing, fastening, pinning, and placing the pieces together. A stark contrast to the feverish speed the bees began working immediately after being introduced to their new home.

I suited up with him one afternoon a few weeks after he launched the second hive. It was early May but summer heat had already set in. The thick canvas jacket stuck to my arms with sweat. We lit a small fire in a stainless steel canister, using the smoke to subdue the bees. With bare hands, he lifted the cover off and began pulling frames out one by one, examining their work.

Pentax k1000 | 50mm f/1.2 | kodak MAX 400