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a much needed escape

When one man, for whatever reason, has the opportunity to lead an extraordinary life, he has no right to keep it to himself. ~Jacques Yves Cousteau
Over the holiday break, my family set out on the S/V Pelican for Catalina Island. Having the boat in Dana Point makes it an easy 6-8 hour sail across the channel. With excellent weather forecast for the entire week we ended up staying for 8 days. Two were spent in Avalon and the rest…


My Journal August 1, 2000

“On July 29 we woke to fairly clear skies except dark black clouds dead ahead. At 0600 or so we were nearing the clouds and the wind shifted around to the S and became very cold. Jim immediately reefed in the main. Moments later we were hit hard with the strongest downpour we have both ever experienced. The winds were about 25K on the nose. The scariest part is that we were heading straight for…

ocean fine art

why I love to photograph in the water

I started photographing in the ocean 13 years ago. I bought my first water housing to take with me on a sailing trip from San Diego, CA to Hiva Oa, French Polynesia and beyond. It was an Ewa Marine housing that I used with my Nikon 8008s and I shot with Fujichrome 100-36 frames at a time. Naturally when my children started to spend hours in the ocean, I would want to photograph them there too.

I was inspired by…

saltwater dreams



I refer to saltwater dreams a lot in my social life: Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook. It comes from my strong yet intangible memories of sailing across the Pacific Ocean 12 years ago and the desire to have these dreams come alive again. The experience changed me in ways that cannot be expressed easily in words.

The sound of the waves slapping on the hull of the boat day and night, then the dance of light on the froth of the waves…

photography is [remembering another life]

snorkeling in Tiputa Pass, Rangiroa

Jim surfing “on the reef” in French Polynesia

Getting tatted in Nuku Hiva by Isidore Haiti

Jim on a secret break in French Polynesia. The locals came out and told me politely, “No Photos!”

Jim with an ear infection paddling around in our dinghy while I snorkel in Ua Pou.

the infamous Clark Beek on the infamous Taapuna, Tahiti
May 2 was the anniversary for two of the most significant life events in…

[photography] is life in Polynesia

On this day in 2000 we were sailing from our beloved Fare, Huahine to Moorea. Before we departed we watched Fare go from a sleepy polynesian village to a full blown event center accommodating 5000 visitors. It was insane. We had to move our boat from the prime anchorage on the reef across from Fare Pass to down the lagoon away from town. As we set sail en route to the next island we watched the start of the…

[life] at anchor and at sea

Our Catalina trip was amazing. It really doesn’t get better than life on a boat. The all-inclusive, pre-packaged vacation is just not our thing. This was the best way to get away. Yes, it was a lot more demanding than most people would like but I feel rewarded and satisfied by a do-it-yourself, down-and-dirty, get your feet wet trip.

I didn’t do all the work so it’s easy for me to say this. Gramma and Grampa were our captain and…

sailing Polynesia

So I took a look in the ol’ Log of the Sailing Vessel Pelican the other day and I noticed that on this day in history (2000) we were heading to Haapiti. One of the most amazing surf breaks and anchorages ever. We hit it on a day that was out of control outside the reef. Big, heaped up swells made the motor around Moorea slow going. But inside where we anchored it was unusually calm for that spot.