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 Elder #38, 2013  THE ELDERS  The old growth stumps pictured in this series have witnessed two complete Cut/Burn/Grow cycles of tree farming, and some of them will witness one or two more. I affectionately refer to these old-growth stumps as The Elders because they exude eldership qualities of presence, dignity and grace.   The notches that appear to be eyes or mouths, were chopped out with axes by loggers who fell the large timber by hand – pre 1930. The feller chopped out a notch in the tree and inserted a hardwood plank called a springboard. He stood on the springboard in order to work above the large swell at the base of the tree. This reduced the time required to chop out the undercut and saw by hand through the backcut.   As the tree stumps decompose the notches start looking like eyes or mouths and the stumps themselves become characters with a story to tell. Early in the process of making these pictures, I was wondering if I would ever use them. They seemed beautiful but without an edge to them.   And then one day after picking my way through the poison oak to have a look at the far side of a newly discovered stump, I stopped and looked up.    Two large powerful eyes looked directly at me. I was stunned into a kind of quiet, motionless submission. I held the gaze until in a mysteriously spiritual way, I was filled with the words, ‘Just make our portraits. We are enough.’      

Elder #38, 2013

THE ELDERS

The old growth stumps pictured in this series have witnessed two complete Cut/Burn/Grow cycles of tree farming, and some of them will witness one or two more. I affectionately refer to these old-growth stumps as The Elders because they exude eldership qualities of presence, dignity and grace. 

The notches that appear to be eyes or mouths, were chopped out with axes by loggers who fell the large timber by hand – pre 1930. The feller chopped out a notch in the tree and inserted a hardwood plank called a springboard. He stood on the springboard in order to work above the large swell at the base of the tree. This reduced the time required to chop out the undercut and saw by hand through the backcut. 

As the tree stumps decompose the notches start looking like eyes or mouths and the stumps themselves become characters with a story to tell. Early in the process of making these pictures, I was wondering if I would ever use them. They seemed beautiful but without an edge to them. 

And then one day after picking my way through the poison oak to have a look at the far side of a newly discovered stump, I stopped and looked up.  

Two large powerful eyes looked directly at me. I was stunned into a kind of quiet, motionless submission. I held the gaze until in a mysteriously spiritual way, I was filled with the words, ‘Just make our portraits. We are enough.’

 

 

 Elder #35, 2013

Elder #35, 2013

 Elder #8, 2007

Elder #8, 2007

 Elder #19, 2011

Elder #19, 2011

 Elder #9, 2008

Elder #9, 2008

 Elder #1, 2007

Elder #1, 2007

 Elder #16, 2010

Elder #16, 2010

 Elder #22, 2011

Elder #22, 2011

 Elder #32, 2011

Elder #32, 2011

 Elder #27, 2011

Elder #27, 2011

 Elder #26, 2011

Elder #26, 2011

 Elder #10, 2008

Elder #10, 2008

 Elder #18, 2011

Elder #18, 2011

 Elder #17, 2010

Elder #17, 2010

 Elder #12, 2008

Elder #12, 2008

 Elder #41, 2015

Elder #41, 2015

 Elder #40, 2015

Elder #40, 2015

 Standing on Springboards, Date Unknown  The notches that appear to be eyes or mouths, were chopped out with axes by loggers who fell the large timber by hand – pre 1930. The feller chopped out a notch in the tree and inserted a hardwood plank called a springboard. He stood on the springboard in order to work above the large swell at the base of the tree. This reduced the time required to chop out the undercut and saw by hand through the backcut. 

Standing on Springboards, Date Unknown

The notches that appear to be eyes or mouths, were chopped out with axes by loggers who fell the large timber by hand – pre 1930. The feller chopped out a notch in the tree and inserted a hardwood plank called a springboard. He stood on the springboard in order to work above the large swell at the base of the tree. This reduced the time required to chop out the undercut and saw by hand through the backcut. 

Elder #38, 2013

THE ELDERS

The old growth stumps pictured in this series have witnessed two complete Cut/Burn/Grow cycles of tree farming, and some of them will witness one or two more. I affectionately refer to these old-growth stumps as The Elders because they exude eldership qualities of presence, dignity and grace. 

The notches that appear to be eyes or mouths, were chopped out with axes by loggers who fell the large timber by hand – pre 1930. The feller chopped out a notch in the tree and inserted a hardwood plank called a springboard. He stood on the springboard in order to work above the large swell at the base of the tree. This reduced the time required to chop out the undercut and saw by hand through the backcut. 

As the tree stumps decompose the notches start looking like eyes or mouths and the stumps themselves become characters with a story to tell. Early in the process of making these pictures, I was wondering if I would ever use them. They seemed beautiful but without an edge to them. 

And then one day after picking my way through the poison oak to have a look at the far side of a newly discovered stump, I stopped and looked up.  

Two large powerful eyes looked directly at me. I was stunned into a kind of quiet, motionless submission. I held the gaze until in a mysteriously spiritual way, I was filled with the words, ‘Just make our portraits. We are enough.’

 

 

Elder #35, 2013

Elder #8, 2007

Elder #19, 2011

Elder #9, 2008

Elder #1, 2007

Elder #16, 2010

Elder #22, 2011

Elder #32, 2011

Elder #27, 2011

Elder #26, 2011

Elder #10, 2008

Elder #18, 2011

Elder #17, 2010

Elder #12, 2008

Elder #41, 2015

Elder #40, 2015

Standing on Springboards, Date Unknown

The notches that appear to be eyes or mouths, were chopped out with axes by loggers who fell the large timber by hand – pre 1930. The feller chopped out a notch in the tree and inserted a hardwood plank called a springboard. He stood on the springboard in order to work above the large swell at the base of the tree. This reduced the time required to chop out the undercut and saw by hand through the backcut. 

 Elder #38, 2013  THE ELDERS  The old growth stumps pictured in this series have witnessed two complete Cut/Burn/Grow cycles of tree farming, and some of them will witness one or two more. I affectionately refer to these old-growth stumps as The Elders because they exude eldership qualities of presence, dignity and grace.   The notches that appear to be eyes or mouths, were chopped out with axes by loggers who fell the large timber by hand – pre 1930. The feller chopped out a notch in the tree and inserted a hardwood plank called a springboard. He stood on the springboard in order to work above the large swell at the base of the tree. This reduced the time required to chop out the undercut and saw by hand through the backcut.   As the tree stumps decompose the notches start looking like eyes or mouths and the stumps themselves become characters with a story to tell. Early in the process of making these pictures, I was wondering if I would ever use them. They seemed beautiful but without an edge to them.   And then one day after picking my way through the poison oak to have a look at the far side of a newly discovered stump, I stopped and looked up.    Two large powerful eyes looked directly at me. I was stunned into a kind of quiet, motionless submission. I held the gaze until in a mysteriously spiritual way, I was filled with the words, ‘Just make our portraits. We are enough.’      
 Elder #35, 2013
 Elder #8, 2007
 Elder #19, 2011
 Elder #9, 2008
 Elder #1, 2007
 Elder #16, 2010
 Elder #22, 2011
 Elder #32, 2011
 Elder #27, 2011
 Elder #26, 2011
 Elder #10, 2008
 Elder #18, 2011
 Elder #17, 2010
 Elder #12, 2008
 Elder #41, 2015
 Elder #40, 2015
 Standing on Springboards, Date Unknown  The notches that appear to be eyes or mouths, were chopped out with axes by loggers who fell the large timber by hand – pre 1930. The feller chopped out a notch in the tree and inserted a hardwood plank called a springboard. He stood on the springboard in order to work above the large swell at the base of the tree. This reduced the time required to chop out the undercut and saw by hand through the backcut.