Fire Danger Conditions

When conditions are as dry as they are now, fires can be ignited extremely easily, from a surprisingly wide range of sources. Any metal-to-metal friction can create a spark; vehicle exhaust systems (especially the catalytic converters, which must be hot to work properly) can easily ignite dry brush; oily rags can spontaneously ignite; the heat generated by organic decomposition can make compost piles highly combustible; glass or metal objects can focus sunlight to a high enough temperature to burn a wide range of combustibles; and then of course there is human carelessness and irresponsible behavior. It pays to not only be careful, but also be keenly aware of the many things that can ignite fires. And to the extent we can, provide water to lawns, shrubs, and trees, so that they can be more resistant to fires and ignition sources.

Credit to Daniel West

Remember, if you think you see smoke and you’re not sure about it call 911 and tell dispatch.

  • Driving in dry grass
  • Glass bottle in dry grass in the sun
  • Chain hanging from vehicle hitting pavement
  • Oily rags in a hot location
  • Bad spark arrester on your motor.
  • And so much more!

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Chicken Coop Fire

Happy Thanksgiving!  I am grateful that this fire was kept from spreading to my brother’s house and garage, and that no one was hurt, not even the chickens!

Our awesome local firefighters came to the rescue last night, and although the fire at my brother’s (Boyce Black) turned out to be just the Chicken Coop, the chickens survived by escaping to the pen in back (so you are stuck with the Turkeys for dinner today). The coop burned up but they kept it from spreading to the very nearby shop/garage. The event was extremely well attended, there were so many flashing lights it looked like a circus! Young firefighters in training had the opportunity to practice their skills and learn more things. THank you to all of you for your hard work and fast response, and thank you to some neighbors who called it in. No one was home at the time. It is theorized the fire started from a light on an extension cord left on to keep the chickens warm.

Smokey Sunset and Good Friends

Marvelous combination for an almost autumn day !  An opportunity was given me to meet an online friend from Australia and I ran with the chance.  As a bonus new friends and old friends mingled for lunch and shooting sunset (in classic photographer meetup fashion worldwide).  Gary Randall, one of the brothers of my heart rather than blood, helped make this happen with his sweetie Darlene Cox, our dear Australian friend Hillary Younger, and Hudson Henry from Portland area. This  Grand day included  excellent food from El Burro Loco in Welches, Oregon, and a hairy drive up long mountain roads to Flagg Mountain lookout.  These are the moments in a photographers life that help us remember the joy in what we do wandering around the county and sometimes around the world observing and capturing the unusual moments in life and the beauty of nature.  Of course it also helps when someone actually buys some of this beauty, and I am so appreciative of those who have understood the work that I and others put into creating our art, and showed their appreciation through purchases both large and small.

Gary Randall has been seriously following his art and his dream this last few years, and not only sells prints but also leads workshops and is licensed as a guide in the National Forest and in the Columbia River Gorge.  You can learn more about him and his work on this website Gary Randall Fine Art Photography .  His sweet girlfriend Darlene is a jewel and also a fine photographer in her own right.

Hillary is a marvelous photographer from Tasmania, with a heart as deep as the ocean and a deep caring for the hill people of Ladakh.

Hudson Henry is remarkable, energetic and creative and fun.  You can see his website here:   Hudson Henry   Ironically, I had saved a draft of this post with the title as is, and then hours later read Hudson’s post which has almost the same title!

A few images from the event, beginning with my quick trip to Sandy for a headlight so I could stay out after dark!

Taken in the afternoon of Sept 15 from Sandy, Oregon as the 36 Pit Fire flared up again.

Taken in the afternoon of Sept 15 from Sandy, Oregon as the 36 Pit Fire flared up again.

Brother and Sister PPV enjoying a sunset. (PPV is Gary's name for a Photography Pursuit Vehicle.  Or was that Personal Photography Vehicle?)   In any case, His PPV did not leave mine in the dust, lil sis kept up just fine.

Brother and Sister PPV enjoying a sunset. (PPV is Gary’s name for a Photography Pursuit Vehicle. Or was that Personal Photography Vehicle?) In any case, His PPV did not leave mine in the dust, lil sis kept up just fine.

The Sun was fascinating seen through the smoke laden sunset from atop Flag Mountain lookout

The Sun was fascinating seen through the smoke laden sunset from atop Flag Mountain lookout

Dropping swiftly below the horizon, the sun was a ball of luminescent red in the smoky sky.

Dropping swiftly below the horizon, the sun was a ball of luminescent red in the smoky sky.

As the colors faded, I was still shooting... my friends!  Hudson, Hillary, and Gary

As the colors faded, I was still shooting… my friends! Hudson, Hillary, and Gary

Gary was a blur of action catching all the Comps, while Hudson stood still long enough  to capture as he caught the fading sunset.

Gary was a blur of action catching all the Comps, while Hudson stood still long enough to capture as he caught the fading sunset.

and of course, one last blast of color long after most people think sunset is over.  I loved the layers here.

and of course, one last blast of color long after most people think sunset is over. I loved the layers here.

 

Thanks for your visit!  If you enjoy my work, please take time to explore links in the sidebar on this page, especially the Photo Galleries link.  Also there are links to various social media where I post photos and visit with my friends.  There is even a link for a Tip Jar/ Donation button if you enjoy viewing all the photos but have no room for large prints and books but like to support artists.

Rowena Fire 2014 UPDATED

UPDATE Aug 9:  The fire was listed as 55 % contained this morning, with 3,565 acres total.  I believe that 3 houses burned and my thought and prayers are with the families, but grateful no lives were lost.  3 other structures burned as well.  All evacuations were dropped to Level 1 and people could return to their homes with caution.  Mopping up and burn outs continue and lets hope that wind does not kick back up hard!  So far so good.  I am adding a small collection of images to the first gallery showing what I could see Friday evening.  Some of these fire images have been shown on news like KGW, and I was contacted by CBS in New York about using an image for their coverage of this fire. I am so appreciative of our Firefighter heros that worked so hard in such dangerous condiitions!  Also,  for those who are so broken hearted about the destruction of nature… I have watched several areas now recover following fire and wildflowers will come back better than ever.  Many of the trees have not been killed, just charred on the edges, and will recover.  Dead falls have been cleaned up which will help with pest problems and future fire hazard.  Poison Oak and Ticks might even get slowed down briefly!  Animals and birds for the most part will have moved out of range of fire, and new grass will grow in better than before providing improved grazing for deer and elk.  You will be amazed in a year or three how quickly many things will return.

Original Post:   Rowena Fire started in the switchbacks along Historic Highway 30 just to the East of Rowena Crest in the Columbia Gorge, and just west of the town of Rowena, Oregon.  First spotted August 5th at 9:15 pm, and Showing up in force August 6, the fire rapidly grew in the next 24 hours to 2,600 acres, and then to 3,372 acres by the morning of August 8.  Currently (Aug 8) there are 659 personnel fighting this fire, with 6 Helicopters dumping water on the fire and many Fire engines are used around the perimeter. 740 residences are threatened by the fire in Rowena and the Chenowith area.  Back burning operations have begun between Rowena and The Dalles.

This short timelapse video is a video speeded up to 16x speed and a few still photographs added in… no sound only the images.   Just click on the link from this sentence.

Here is a gallery of the Photographs taken August 6 in the evening Click on an image to see it larger, and use arrows to see the rest of the images.

Some of my better images will also be in the Wildfire gallery on my SmugMug website.  Go there by clicking on this link for wildfire gallery where they can also be purchased.

Thank you for your visit.  I have always been fascinated with documenting area Wildfires as you can see in the Wildfire Gallery Link which will open in a new tab.

Even more complete collection of local wildfire images can be seen on my Flickr Page here showing several photo albums from different Fires.  Click on this link to go to my Flickr Wildfire Collection and it will open in a new tab in your browser.

2014 Calendars

Fire calendar Cover

Fire calendar Cover

Desk Calendar

Desk Calendar

2014 Calendars.

I updated my 2014 calendar page to include the Fire Calendar, the Desk Calendar, and more information about what I have left.  Email me with questions or orders!  Thanks so very much for your visit, it means a lot to me.

New Fire Calendar! Last but not least…

at the request of some fire fighting friends I have now
created a 2014 Fire Calendar, with my best shots from several fires
in this area since 2008.  I only ordered 6 for now, but will
order more if I get requests! email me at starlisa.black@gmail.com
to request a Fire Calendar. They are $25 each, or three or more are $20 each.

Click on a picture and it will take you
to a scroll through slideshow of each page of the calendar


$25 plus $6 for shipping and handling.
If you email me I will send you an invoice which you can pay via PayPal, debit/credit, or money orders. Locally I also take checks and cash. Thank you for taking time to look!

2012 Photojourney BOOK

My newest book is out, consisting of many of my best images from late 2011 to late 2012 (plus a few extra bests thrown in from previous years).
1-2012Photojourney-FrontCover

This colorful 8 x 8 inch book consists of 26 pages plus full size photos on front and back cover, and tells a seasonal story of the last year for this part of southern Washington and northern Oregon including bits from the Columbia River Gorge. Also included are photos from Mount Hood, Mount Adams, Mount Rainer, and Mount St. Helens, as well as Fire photos from this years local wildfires.

Price: $42.00 Shipping and Handling $6.00
Contact me at starlisa.black@gmail.com or on here to make an order. I am now able to take paypal, debit, and credit over the phone; chec or checks and cash via male at

Starlisa Black Photography
P.O. Box 190
Husum, WA 98623

Fighting the Darkness with Light and Color

I don’t know about you, but sometimes this time of year I feel heavy, slow… and sad as I think too much of those who have gone on.  This story explains a wee bit of how I came into Photography in a more serious way as a healing therapy.

My husband and father both passed away in 1996.  Some months after Mom’s passing in November 2003, I fell into depression and anxiety attacks.  I was on my way to work one early morning in Spring, barely aware of my surroundings.  When suddenly I heard her voice clear as day  from the seat next to me in the truck where she used to ride on our singing drives through the mountains. “Oh LOOK at the pretty sunrise” she said clearly… my head jerked up, and the sky was full of color and one of the prettiest sunrises I had ever seen!  I burst into tears, said thank you… and after that found myself really noticing the beauty in everything around me.  It was a couple more years before I got a little camera, while I was working at Cherry Street Manor as a caregiver in the adult foster care home.  I found my way out to Bird Creek Meadows on Mount Adams, for the first time since i was in my early 20’s, and took many photos that i brought back to share with the elders I was taking care of. Many of them had memories of places like that and I found it brightened their day also.  That led into taking more and more photos, and discovering Flickr in 2007 where I could post photos and learn from others around the world.

This remembering is a good reminder now for me, as it explains and reminds me where my gift of Photography came from, and how it is my heartfelt wish to share the photos with others  to help them see the beauty in the world around them.  And here I come back to the early thought that when you focus on the positive in this world, it will surround you.  I have been blessed to be surrounded by people in life who were indeed positive, creative, and loving!

 

The above image is a sampler image showing all the months of my 2013 calendar and you can find out more about how to order it over here   nearly half of them are spoken for already and they are not even here yet!  I will get more ordered.

2013 Calender coming next week!

This is the front cover of my new calender!

I have been lax about posting on this blog lately, because I have been working on my starlisa.net website.  You can find a new page on that site with photos showing my new 2013 photography calendar and more information about how to get them.  Please feel free to share the link with your friends and help me do advertising that way!

2013 Starlisa Black Photography Calendar information can be found here 

 

Thank you for looking and sharing!

Starlisa