Max

On one hand I have been nothing but quiet on the internet front lately but in general I have been nothing but. Finalizing details of a new album of music and moving into how to package it as well as writing, and searching for new material for desktop posts it’s just been a lot of behind the scenes work at play lately.

It hit me though that I have a few new wallpapers as well as a new 50ft Radio mix completely ready to go so I thought I would start a few new posts off with this lovely, minimal image shot while on a weekend camping trip with the family. We made a stop at Max Patch which is a famous spot along the Appalachian Trail to soak in the view and Its impossible not to take photos like this while there. The landscape is a unique patch of grassy land at high elevation giving visitors a really lovely 360 degree view of the mountains around the space. Links below for a wallpaper, enjoy!

Tiny Shrine

Traveling with a toddler can be a challenge, especially as a photographer. Finding a moment to sneak off and take photos is tricky because I have to balance my guilt for leaving family behind for what feels like a selfish endeavor and my creativity which doesn’t always flock to me at the flick of a switch. In my experience it takes me time to find a rhythm among the shutter clicks and in prioritizing time with family it has been harder to find my way to that space of mental clarity. It is something that I have been fighting a lot with in the past couple of years. My wife, YoungDoo seems to be clairvoyant behind a camera though and has managed to mold her creative focus around the challenges of being a mother but I think that I have come to the conclusion that we have different means of finding inspiration.

Her creative visions come fluidly through inspirations found in her surroundings, wherever she is and I have no idea how she pulls that off. With me, I need more room to get lost in my head and get comfortable with whatever space I am in. It takes time for me to see beyond the anxious pressure I put on myself when I walk around with camera in hand /with intention/ to shoot. This is touching on ideas I have been writing a lot about lately and have been chipping away at an article of sorts that needs a closing before I can post it. Thats the hardest part of writing is it not? Sticking the landing.

Waiting Outside

I’m sure I mentioned it already but bikes and Kyoto are a match made in heaven. The city is largely flat and you can get anywhere in the city with little to no effort by bike. I was apprehensive about this fact for some reason while we were there so we only took out bikes made available for us once which I look back on and regret. Maybe it was just that I love taking subways and trains places and the trains in Kyoto are charming and affordable so it was hard to resist.

Bikes littered the city though, at least the more traditional parts of it. It was hard to go anywhere without one zipping by and if your ever there I highly suggest you consider it as a key mode of transportation. What better way to see a city than to take it slow? Enjoy the photo? Wallpaper links below!

Kurama-dera

We did our best to balance our time in Kyoto, leaving plenty of space for simply traveling between places or taking the long way somewhere. This did send us to the wrong spot once or twice including our attempt to make our way out to this beautiful temple in mountains just outside of the city. It’s a beautiful place to visit and because it was the off season and we arrived at the end of the day there was hardly anyone there at all. Even with only a short time available to us to explore the cliff dwelling temple we were able to soak in some of the misty charm and glow of the complex and its many vistas, temples, and steep pathways. It was a beautifully calm place, as was the tiny town at its entrance. This image is but a tiny, perhaps common view but it quickly brings back fond memories. Links for a wallpaper below!

For Tomorrow

Looking through photos I took in Japan four years ago I find it impossible to believe that it has been that long since traveling there. I had to recount the years a few times on my fingers just to triple check but its true. This could be because my life has sped by exponentially faster and faster as big shifts swing with a wider circumference as I get older. The weight of that spin and its billowing momentum makes me wonder if there is any way to stop a year from going by without it feeling like an abrupt cut in a film with a lazy caption reading “one year later”.

Or, lets look at this in a more optimistic light. Maybe the reason looking through these photos I feel as though it were just yesterday because the trip left that much of an impact on me. After a lifetime of curiosity I had finally made it to Japan, maybe just for a short time, sure, but I do remember it fondly. The movement of Kyoto, the taste of each thing we ate, the color of the walls and the feeling of dodging raindrops with a large plastic umbrella bought at a 7-11. Memories from this trip have been surprisingly sticky in my mind, especially when digging around through photos taken while there. My heart lights up a bit as memories start to flood in, holding loosely onto one another in a wave of “oh yeah, I remember that!” moments.

The photograph here felt like a good place to start in sharing some of these visual memories with anyone stopping by. I have a few cropped already and will continue to share and dig through them until I feel like I have run out of interesting things to post from the trip. The photo here today taken at a temple in Kyoto feels apt somehow as I start to notice my own hopes, prayers, and dreams start to neatly pile up around me. Tonight, sitting here in silence on any one random winter night, I find myself again considering an ongoing theme in my personal thoughts going into this year about time and its passing and find connections and metaphors everywhere I turn.

Or, lets look at this in a more, “hey, John, I’m just here for the wallpapers, wheres the link?” Oh, right. Ahem, links below, stop back by soon, lets see what momentum I can get going in 2018 shall we?

Atlantic November

So, turns out, up here on the northern hemisphere, snow is starting to fall as winter settles quickly into place. About a month ago I found myself working along the chilly coast of South Carolina in the late fall and while I did not have much of any free time to wander and take photos I did take the long path around the hotel grounds as an excuse to snap a photo here and there. I was lucky to find this charming old fence among the dunes to use as a subject and while the beach is not particularly a holiday greeting card kind of December image to share, I thought why not share a little sand with everyone anyway because we all have different versions of what makes this time of year special to us or not so who am I to say all I should be posting this month are photos of Christmas lights and other such paraphernalia.

You can find download links below, if you are on an iPhone X, rumor has it that iPad size wallpapers work wonders on these new devices but I have not had a chance to do any official testing myself I may sneak over to an Apple Store at some point to try some test files out. I’m one of the odd geeks out that chose the iPhone 8 this year rather than the talk of the town face ID phone. At any rate, I will see you again soon, I have some more planned to post this month if all goes well! In the meantime, Enjoy!

Download:

Past Is Present

Boards Of Canada was on when I was cropping this image so fans will know how the title drifted into my head today. I remember seeing this mossy fence on the edge of a pathway at a mountainside temple near Kyoto. The air was cool and damp and the temple was quiet after we arrived late in the day as most everyone else was on their way out. Somewhere in the distance a drum was echoing out through the grounds. I remember the small town outside the temple as well and how slow it felt as we waited on a train to arrive. Thinking about it makes the stressful day I am taking a break from by sharing a new photo feel a little more calm. How to hold onto this feeling is the real trick.

This is one of those images that was tricky to crop for a vertical smartphone because there was not quite enough empty space to fit the center column in there but I did my best. The full desktop size is lovely though. Hopefully it will bring you a little peacefulness as well should your day contain more stress than relaxation. Downloads below, enjoy!

Outlook

One afternoon YoungDoo’s sister and her family took us on a drive outside of Seoul for some time away from the city. One of the spots we visited was a cool little art gallery/cafe/shop/theater complex next to a huge lake, sorry I don’t remember the name. Before we left I knew I wanted to sneak over and take a few photos of the lake and mountains in the distance but upon walking up to the edge of an outlook the overgrowth of plantlike at the edge of the trail caught my eye.

This one wispy vine took off above everything else and I knew I had found a take on this landscape other than the landscape itself. I often find myself in this same position, gazing at the grass instead of the view. There is so much hidden in the foreground of our lives that is easy to miss or ignore. That is to say, don’t forget to check out the forest through the trees while you are out exploring.

Links to a wallpaper cut can be found below, HD version is in the usual members downloads spot. Enjoy!

Cafe Yaang

After visiting Korea again I realized it was the 6th time I have had the opportunity to spend time there. Unlike previous trips this time around felt like a “Greatest Hits” sort of visit where I did not have as much time to wander around lost so I found myself gravitating to my favorite old spots, hoping they were still there because so many shops and cafes have short life spans in the crowded marketplace.

Among shops I was surprised managed to hang on was this gem of a coffee shop called Cafe Yaang. Tucked away in a small 4-5 block area full of small independent shops, restaurants, bars and cafes. It was a pleasant surprise to see it held on while many others in the area vanished since my last visit.

Cafe Yaang is my favorite kind of little Cafe, full of modest charm and understated ambience making it a cozy place to relax in for a while. I did my best to capture the simple charm and calmness of the space with these couple of photos and thought they would make for equally cozy wallpapers. Links below, more to come but for now, enjoy!

Download:

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