Path and Coastal Hills, Marin County | Mark Lindsay

I needed to get out of the studio after a long week, so I went for a hike yesterday with a good friend and my camera—the recipe for a perfect day. Here in Marin County, California, we are blessed with magnificent trails. Sometimes, when destinations are too close to home we take them for granted. They lose their exotic quality and become too familiar. It is an aspect of human nature that frustrates me. I wish it were easier to see my quotidian world from a fresher perspective.

My camera is my antidote. It helps me break through the familiarity of the local terrain. I was hoping yesterday to brighten my horizons and refocus my mind on making new images instead of hunching over a computer monitor. It was a successful outing. I made over 400 images during the hike, finding something visually exciting most everywhere we walked. When I got home and looked at what I photographed, a remarkable realization struck me.

Lately, I've been working in a black & white photographic world. I created four new pieces of my Desolation's Comfort series, which consists entirely of black & white photomontage prints, for the new show I am sharing with two colleagues at Contra Costa College. Last night, in reviewing my new images, I immediately realized that I'd chosen and composed most of them with a monochromatic perspective. Virtually every one of the photos looked better in black & white than in color. I'd not consciously made this choice, but clearly, my creative energy had mysteriously selected the images for me. Creativity is such a wonder.

I believe I have enough to set up a gallery of images on the web site and will do so as soon as time permits. In the meantime, I present here a photo of the trail as it cuts through the stunning hillside that straddles the Pacific Ocean near Stinson Beach.