December 10, 2011

Charred Beauty


Even though we're lucky to have pretty consistently amazing weather here in Southern California, we do have our share of natural disasters to contend with every now and then. Aside from the occasional earthquake, this particular geographical location is also susceptible to some pretty devastating brush fires.
Back in 2008 there was a horrific brush fire which caused great devastation in and around the Malibu area. Unfortunately there was widespread property damage as well as a significant charring of certain areas of the natural landscape. Several months after the fires, I went to the Malibu Bluffs park which is located right along Pacific Coast Highway exactly where it intersects with Malibu Canyon Road. I had actually taken my film camera and film to go shooting another part of the city but as I was stopped at the intersection I noticed that the trees which were in the path of the fire were charred on one side but left completely untouched on the other.
I took some close-up shots of the charred tree trunk because the pattern that had been left behind as a result of the fire looked so beautiful to me. More than anything the photos are symbolic of the fact that not only is there beauty all around us all the time, but that we can even find the beauty in the world after a devastating event such as a massive brush fire. We, just like nature, have the ability to renew and recover and rebuild, perhaps in a way that is better and stronger (and more beautiful) than before...

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