Saturday, October 9, 2010

New website! My work is a secret world hidden among the gathering dusk under the trees. Cool evenings after a hot day or a quiet place in the afternoon...

Sunday, September 26, 2010

West Coast Trip

Deb has printed 9 sets of 25 drawings from her recent trip down the West Coast. You can view these silk screen prints here. Double click on the images to get a better view.
Link to View Tree Prints

We took over 5,000 photos and covered over 2,000 miles of landscape between Washington to California. Read about the story in sequence by looking for "The story continues..." Double click on the images to view larger images, find a few hidden details & surprises. (Start here)

Deb is selling limited edition prints on her website through Paypal. If you have any questions please contact her directly through email.
Link to Purchase Prints

One ending another begining

So before we sent out the prints, we hit a little bump. A baby bump! So there is going to be another Correa on the way. 4/5/2011 We just heard the little heart beating today (during our second check up). If Josh's dad has his way we will have a little baby girl...

Friday, September 10, 2010

A journey's end

Flying back to Ohio I reflected that a week ago I just beginning our 2,000 mile journey. Not only did we cover a lot of ground, but we also saw some amazing sights; the daily glimpse of the Cascade mountains in Seattle; the misty pine covered hills of Oregon where fog blotted out the border between land, sky and ocean; moss covered maples overhanging our road; gigantic trees dwarfing all who aspire to stand beside them; waves crashing on sheer cliffs; sea lions, elephant seals, ground squirrels and elk.. I saw firsthand how the abundance or lack of water, sun and wind can shape an environment, and I saw firsthand the amazing creativity of our Creator in the variety of organisms that make a home in every environment.

When I returned to Ohio I had a mountain of work to do; finishing drawings then printing each of my nine drawings 25 times. (That's 225+ prints all by hand!) I compiled the prints in a hanging installation for the Cultivating Growth show. The prints were hung in descending order from North to South. Thank you to all those who believed in me and pre-bought prints of the trees without seeing them. I hope you enjoy them even more knowing a little bit about them.

This trip encouraged me to pursue my creative goals. I gained confidence in my work and am currently applying to graduate school to get a Masters in Art. I am looking forward to many more road trips of this kind all over the US and eventually internationally!

I hope you enjoyed reading about our journey and most of all I hope you are encouraged to go have an adventure of your own! Thanks for reading :)

Content by Deborah Correa

Layout and design by Joshua Correa

All photos by Joshua & Deborah Correa 2010 show

Trees of Orange County

The next day Josh’s dad Danny took me on a private tour of the trees of Orange County. First on the list were Canyon Live Oaks. I had forgotten to charge the camera batteries so I missed the opportunity to take photos of these gnarly trees, but enjoyed seeing them. We visited two huge Moreton figs, both planted in the 1880’s. The Moreton fig at the Santa Barbara train station officially tops these two, however they were equally impressive. One was in front of a Catholic church and spread over the six lane street. The other stretched taller than the others. It grew on a side road in a neighborhood. The house it grew in front of had recently been torn down to make a park for the tree.

The remaining trees on my list were the Orange tree and palm tree. And after all the eucalyptus trees we had seen I still didn’t have good photos of one. We visited a small park, but we had to pay to go into so we just walked around the entrance then left. There was an orange grove there and some beautiful California sycamores. Danny took me to the circle in old town Orange where I photographed the orange and palms. In another park we saw some crazy twisting trees with no leaves. Their white mottled bark gleamed weirdly in the sun. I didn’t recognize these as sycamores until Josh categorized them as such. California sycamores are more angular then their Eastern counterparts. These must have been susceptible to a canker that causes some of them to lose their leaves.

The journey's end...

O.C. tree slide show

Disney & Dream Center

LA to Placentia CA

We were now on the home stretch and ready to be done driving! The way to LA was clogged with traffic and I was brought back to a sharp reality. Once in the Los Angeles city limits the brilliant sun was hidden by clouds. I was told later this was the “June gloom,” and that residents are thankful for it because it prolongs the cooler days of spring. We made it to the Correa’s by 8, in time to catch the second half of the Lakers game.

The next day we returned our hardworking rental car, having added almost 2,000 miles to it, and borrowed Danny’s truck to visit LA. We went first to the Disney Animation Studio to visit a friend of Josh’s from his time at Pratt. Andre met us in front of the huge magician’s hat marking the entrance to the studio. We walked across to the ABC building to eat in the cafeteria. Josh got a free meal and we ran into a CCAD student interning for the summer. After a pleasant lunch catching up, Andre showed us around his area. He was working on Tangled, Disney’s version of Rapunzel. His job was to create clothing and hair textures for the characters in 3D. It was incredible to see what he did with the blank canvas he was given. I was so impressed by the screen shots I saw of the movie in progress. I am definitely going to see this movie!

After our brief journey into the world of Disney, we drove a few blocks to another world, that of the Dream Center. The Dream Center is a non-for-profit outreach to the homeless and destitute. Located 2 miles from downtown LA, the Dream Center is housed in an old hospital which is being remodeled one floor at a time as funds allow. Every night close to 500 people sleep there. (What a contrast to Disney!) Our friend LaQuesha came from Columbus to LA to serve for a year. A unique service opportunity, the Dream Center boards volunteers to run its operations. LaQuesha is putting her CCAD education to use as a part of the graphic design team. We tagged along on a tour of the building, then ditched it to spend time with LaQuesha.

On our way back to Orange County, I couldn't help comparing LA with the natural wonder of all that we had seen on our trip. The city just seemed tired out. Beautiful in parts, warm and sunny, but everyone just seemed to be putting one foot in front of the other, tired out from the daily grind of living. Most cities are like that, I think it comes from not having enough nature around us. We forget that there is a time for everything and that we are not the ones in control.

The story continues...

George Yepes,St. Lucy's Terrance

Purple Jacarandas and a huge Fig tree!

Santa Barbara CA

As soon as we came within sight of Santa Barbara it immediately felt like southern California. Palms abounded, flowers burst from every corner, the wind became gentler and sky even seemed to be bluer. We turned off the 101 to hunt up a giant fig we had been told about and I saw my first jacaranda tree. The jacaranda tree comes from South America and blooms with purple-blue flowers in the spring. The streets were lined with these beautiful trees. I am happy to say we continued to see them all over LA and Anaheim.

Josh located the huge fig at the train station sans directions with no problems. I’m glad I don’t try to hide from him. I swear he has a built in GPS! The fig was truly incredible. It's spreading branches shaded the entire corner of a small side street tucked beside the freeway. The train station was large but empty; the unused parking lot told of busier days.

The fig was a Moreton Bay Fig from Australia, brought as a seedling to the US in 1876 and planted. The last official measurement was in 1991, when the branches spread out 167 feet with a total height of 76 feet. The trunk measured 12.5 feet around. The roots rise chest high and stretch out as wide as the branches. I read later that it is common for the homeless to sleep hidden in the roots. I found someone’s bag and blanket so it is probably true.

It is not often we have the opportunity to be next to a living monument. That's what this fig tree is. It was alive when the first automobiles began to populate the streets, it saw women get the right to vote and the civil rights movement. Beatniks slept under it in the 1950's then hippies ten years later. A generation and a half have lived and died in it's lifetime, families gained and lost fortunes, wars have been fought abroad and at home. What stories would it have for us? What wisdom for this culture of hurry and immediate entertainment?

The story continues...


San Luis Obispo

An hour later we fully rejoined the busy pace of life in Central California. Our little two lane CA-1 met up with the 101 at San Luis Obispo and became a freeway whizzing past the yellow hills. I wanted to observe the by now scanty population of native trees so Josh sniffed out a small botanical garden. I happily identified some of the trees I’d been seeing while Josh photographed the flowers and played tag with some resident quail.

South of San Luis Obispo, farmers took advantage of the year round growing season and irrigated large stretches of valley. Dividers to break the wind stretched between the fields. We passed through dusty towns looking very similar to towns in Baja Mexico. Eucalyptuses grew wild here. Each one unique, their leaves clustered like balls on the ends of their branches. Palms dotted larger towns and landscaped entrances. The golden hills rolled on with us to Santa Barbara and the ocean.

The story continues...

Castles and Seals

Piedras Blancas, CA ....................................

Returning to the winding, narrow road we looked at the time and vowed we would not stop again unless it was for something really incredible. An hour and a half later we were out of the mountains on a rolling brown plain level with the adjacent beach. Our plan was to stop at Hearst Castle, which sounded really incredible, when we passed a crowd at an “Elephant Seal Viewing Area” We turned around quickly and joined them. The wind just about blew me over when I got out of the car. In the parking lot, fat little ground squirrels popped their heads out of the brush to see if we had food. They liked our granola bars just as much as the chipmunks at Prairie Creek did.

The elephant seals were pretty incredible. Apparently, they come to this beach, a beach further south, and a beach in Alaska at regular intervals every year, different age groups at a time. The early part of June, when we were there, younger (sub-adult) males come to shed their winter skin. Older males would arrive next to molt, and then leave to return in December to battle for mating rights. Females arrive late December, give birth to their babies, and then mate again in February. After a brief time at sea the females return in April to molt. Pretty amazing. Some of the seals we saw were beginning to get their long noses, which is why they are called Elephant Seals. We thought those guys were pretty huge, some up to seven feet long and well over 2,000 lbs. But a helpful park docent told us full grown males can be 16 feet long and over 6,000 lbs.!

Hearst Castle was going to have to be pretty amazing to beat the Elephant Seals! We went up the road ten minutes then climbed a long driveway to a crowded parking lot. We couldn’t see anything resembling a castle and it looked like the big attraction was a long hike up a hill. We decided to forgo the castle and get back on the road. From Josh's family I learned that Hearst Castle was the estate of William Randolph Hearst and is full of incredible architecture and art. We will have to go back and visit sometime.The story continues...

A Hidden Haven


Julia Pfeiffer State Park

Traveling on Highway 1 we were off in our own little world once again, inhabited only by other tourists, backpackers and bicyclists. What a sight the next morning to see the sun streaming over the hills, the ocean pounding on the rocks below us. We stopped multiple times to photograph this or that, only once going into one of the state parks. We found it quite by accident; I think I was getting a little motion sick from the twists and turns. The entrance to Julia Pfeiffer State Park is tucked in a curve. We drove into the small, uninhabited parking lot; signs were posted everywhere “No overnight parking”. It cost $10 to park there, another way to deter sleeping in cars I’m sure. We were getting low on funds and wanted to get to Anaheim that night so we opted not to stay long. I got out and ran up the hill a short way into the woods while Josh stayed with the car. I came around a bend in the trail and stopped short in amazement. A cheerful stream greeted me, babbling down a hill, finding its way down to the ocean below.

Impressive redwoods grew on either side of the stream, not straight and true like their Northern brothers, nor as big around. A leaf canopy had been formed by the force of the wind pushing the trees down and to the side. Light pierced the leaf canopy, falling on the water in patches and making it sparkle like diamonds. A quiet aliveness permeated the glade, the light filtering through the trees was like light coming through stain glass windows in a cathedral. I lingered, enjoying this unexpected haven, then ran back to Josh. We switched, I stayed with the car while he explored.

We wanted to explore further here, but our time was running out. There was still a lot to see before we got to Anaheim! The story continues...

Golden Sunsets

Big Sur, CA

We left the congestion and traffic of Central California and got on Highway 1, which would take us south along the coast through the Big Sur all the way to Santa Barbara. The two lane road clung to the side of huge hills, often cutting into them. Sturdy pines grew on the sides of the hills where the wind had not scoured clean of all but course grass. Below us to the left was the sea, cold and breaking with fury on the rocks. There was no beach here, just the bottom of the hills plunging into the sea. Golden sunlight shone strongly on the red hills. We pulled over at just about every overlook to take pictures of the amazing sunset that was accompanying us. But it was almost impossible to take good photos because it was so windy! We drove about half an hour along the coast then the road turned inland into the state parks. It was almost dark by now so Josh got us a room in the first motel we came to. I had been up for camping, but the wind was cold and it was already dark. The next day was our anniversary and Josh didn’t want me to be uncomfortable on our anniversary. He is the best husband in the world! The story continues...