Last week I took a trip down to northern California to visit the redwood forest. I had set out on my motorcycle but had a mechanical breakdown in the Oregon desert on the second day and ended up renting a car in Bend to complete the trip the next day.
The effort to get to the redwoods was immense but completely worthwhile. What struck me about standing in the forest was the stillness of the air and how peaceful I felt compared to the stress created by the daily barrage of negative news related to politics and the Covid 19 pandemic.
I think Ansel Adams understood the value of spending time in nature at a time of great human turmoil. He made some of his most significant images of rocks and trees during World War II . I think Adams understood that to stand in nature and become aware of geologic time versus human time can help us see past our temporary struggles.
When I spend time photographing the primordial landscape I am left with the thought, “Nature doesn’t need me. I need nature.”