B&W ART Montage

Water Woes

Those of you who have known me for awhile, know of my appreciation for Surrealist Art. Surrealism uses visual imagery from the subconscious mind to spur the imagination. The art is a juxtaposition of two or more distant realities found together, producing  illogical and startling effects. Surrealism addresses the cultural, social and political aspects of the human experience and our beliefs.

The human experience is about to go through deep change if environmental conditions continue to exacerbate climate change and sea level rise. For most people climate change is an abstract idea, hard to visualize how it will affect their surroundings. The gallery of photographs below, have in common the element of water. I don’t know what the artist was thinking but my imagination or subconscious leads me to reflect on sea level rise.

The Earth reality is so fragile.

Thomas barbey surreal photography - chicquero -  (11)

 Urban Offering
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From Fleece to Skein

A Visit to the Mora Valley Spinning Mill


How Yarn Is Made.

Location: Mora, New Mexico

The textile industry is the world’s oldest branch of manufacturing for consumer goods. Over recent years, however, there has been growing concern about the environmental impacts of textiles. Many traditional natural fibers once used for textiles have been replaced with synthetic materials. Approximately 30-35% of the chemicals in the world go through the textile industry and in the categories of products that cause the greatest environmental impact textiles rank fourth .

The modern world needs textiles for a vast assortment  of applications, from the carpets beneath our feet, to our clothing, to the household and architectural textiles used everyday. While a hundred years ago the majority of textile production was concentrated in Europe and North America, today, the bulk of textiles and clothing is manufactured in Asia. This shift of the industry, particularly to China and India has all but destroyed the textile business in Europe, the U.S. and Australia. Hundreds and hundreds of textile weaving and spinning mills have closed. Jobs have been lost and towns deserted. Sheep and livestock ranchers have also been affected as local textile production needs have dropped. As you can see, textiles are heavily intertwined with environmental and  social issues.

077The agricultural industry has shown us that people have sickened of corporate farms and processed foods and  increasingly support local farms that provide organic produce. A large proportion of society is also sickened by synthetic materials and hungers for quality natural fiber products. There is a niche to be filled. Continue reading

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Donde Viven Alpaca

Location: Victory Ranch – Mora, New Mexico


042About ten miles from my home the Lower Farm is a herd of alpaca. Horses, cattle or even sheep may come to mind when thinking about livestock in New Mexico but in the Mora Valley a herd of alpaca thrives in the environment there.

028 Continue reading

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retreat releases stress

Two week retreat at the Lower Farm – a review

“In order to understand the world, one has to turn away from it on occasion.”  – Albert Camus [The Minotaur]

At the Lower Farm there is no TV, no radio, no phone, no computer, no indoor plumbing, no running water and heating/cooking is done with a wood burning stove. That is the beginning of paying attention to all the little things. Continue reading

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2014 Lower Farm Retreat

Aloha Friends,

Just a quick note informing I will be off on retreat for the rest of the month.

I will be spending time in New Mexico at my property in the mountains. A retreat will do me wonders and I’ll have a chance to talk story with the neighbors. I’ll tell you about it later.


New Mexico 007

New Mexico 014

New Mexico 019

New Mexico 038

Happy Trails, Dohn

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A peek over the Pololū Valley

Big Island, Hawai’i. coordinates: 20°9′3″ N, 155°44′39″ W

On the North Kohala peninsula past the quaint towns of Hawi and Kapa’au, after about 8 miles of lush, winding road Highway 270 dead ends at the overlook of Pololū Valley. The Pololū Valley is the first of five majestic valleys that stretch along the coast to the southeast.

145In the Hawaiian language Pololū means long spear. The valley carves a long eroded cleave on the northern side of Kohala Mountain. This magnificent wild valley is at the head of the Kohala Coast, the oldest part of the island.

127 Continue reading

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Hawaiian Voyaging

Navigating the World

041They sail with no charts or instruments. No timepiece. No compass. They navigate as their ancestors did, guided by a world of natural signs—the arcing stars, sun, and moon; the signs of direction in swell and wind and current. Two voyaging canoes, the Hokule’a and Hikianalia departed Hawai’i on such a journey at the end of May. About 28 days later they had reached Tahiti. The journey will continue as these two double-hulled canoes sail to Australia, the Indian Ocean, round the Horn of Africa, make numerous port in the Mediterranean, cross the Atlantic Ocean and bring their message to the continents of North and South America before returning home to Hawai’i. The Hawaiian name for this voyage, Mālama Honua, means ‘to care for our Earth’.

I had the fortunate opportunity to be present for a Hawaiian blessing ceremony in Hilo, Hawai’i as the Hokule’a and  Hikianalia prepared to set sail for Tahiti. Nothing has captured my imagination as this journey has since the early days of space exploration. I remember clearly when I  first saw the image of our small  blue planet as viewed from space. We see that oceans connect all land masses on this planet. What better ambassadors could there be to spread the word  for sustainable resource use to the world than those from an island environment.

Hokule’a and her sister vessel, Hikianalia will cover 47,000 nautical miles with stops at 85 ports in 26 different countries on a three year circumnavigation of the earth. If you are near to any of those ports where these Hawaiian voyagers will stop  I encourage you to to take the time to visit, to hear their stories and to also share the knowledge and stories of your place on this planet. We are all connected.


You can learn more about the World Wide Voyage Mālama Honua and follow live updates/video/photos and articles, plus track a map of the journey at the following link: Hokulea.com Continue reading

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