Personal Photography (2021)
Kuau’i, Maui, Big Island
Maha’Ulepu Heritage Trail, Kaua’i
Proposal: to document the Hawaiian landscape
The Hawaiian landscape feels almost alien. As an island cast far into the Pacific, it has been allowed to develop into its own unique place. Plants are foreign; the stone has its own unique texture; even the dirt is colored differently. Everything is bathed in the warm southern sunlight.
The volcanic rock, having risen deep from the depths of the ocean, is laid to bare against the relentless ocean waves and beating wind. The formations vary wildly, but are each articulated as though with a careful attention to detail.
Napali Coast Cathedrals, Kaua’i
The Northern side of the islands are the most exposed to the elements. Along the Napali Coast in Kaua’i, mountain ridges cascade down to the water like Cathedral Buttresses holding up the walls to the valleys beyond. Other points along the coast are carefully chiseled with each facet capturing a different angle of the sun, or shear faces with cuts of dried-up waterfalls. On the Northwest of Maui, the volcanic earth is carved into walls, pedestals, and objects. The sun dances around them all.
Hawaii is an ongoing dichotomy between the destructive forces of lava and the creation of life from its ashes. Near the volcano tops, active lava still flows today. The landscape is scarred, barren, blackened. As the hardened magma approaches the shore and ages, life takes up residence. The abundant rain and sun create buoyant, lush greenery. A cross section through the mountainside is a cross section through the process of life.