Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Adventures can be close to home...

sometimes it's as simple as looking down
Screen full of awesome
Paths of humans, machines, and coyotes

sometimes it's looking up
Pink on Blue
Sky cloud and wires

sometimes walking with family
Where creek meets sea

sometimes with friends
He's such a poser 2
"Pretend your surfing and pointing at the camera"

sometimes with natural objects
Tree Halo

sometimes with man-made ones
Raven's Cry Theater Halo

and sometimes on your own

but every time it is with one's willingness to go out with camera in hand.
All of these photos were taken on the small coastline I live on.
To me this is home. This is where I grew up. This is where my family grew up.
Many people who grow up here actually see it as rather boring.
The same day after day.

But everywhere is foreign and exotic to the vast majority of people on the earth.

So go out with camera in hand and see this foreign wonderful world we get to walk.
Where you live is foreign to me. Even if you live next door.

You have a very unique perspective.
You live in a foreign place.

I don't see what or how you see,
unless you're willing to share it with us.

For those that do, I thank you.
For those who haven't yet, I invite you to.

It is a world of wonders simply complex.

~ The Maplemusketeer

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Exciting times ahead!

At the beach

Firstly it's spring time here finally! Hooray and Happy Dances! :D ;)

Salmon Berry Blossom

and sorry for my multi-day absence ;) Easter long weekend was long and yummy and I'm now very full and ready to go adventure and work it off ;)

Skunk Cabbage

The other day I went for a small afternoon photo adventure with my buddy Justin. He's the fellow who photographed the West Coast Leprechaun shoot and he does amazing work.

We went to a couple local beaches and explored a local dirt road by some farmland.

This is my favorite photo from that day. It's of a kite boarder at Davis Bay beach on the Sunshine Coast of British Columbia.

Spring Beach Action

Now.. on to the exciting news....

Some of you may recall when I got to alpha test EmmaActive last year. It's now in its beta test phase and actually in use on my site! If you scroll over any of my pictures you'll discover the interface and if you look at pictures with actual products in them you'll get descriptions that also link to places you can purchase the product. It's a pretty nifty concept. ;)

Well I'm going to be working on an idea to combine the new paradigm with some outdoor photo adventures and we'll likely be going for some ramblesome adventures on the lovely and huge and spectacular Vancouver Island.

But wait.. there's more. ;)

Another project in development is a TV/Webseries of adventures/wonder/roadtrips/music/zany antics and discovery. We're still hammering out details but are looking to actually roll in June.

Who knows.. we might even make it to your neck of the woods, wherever that may be. ;) :D

So yes... all in all a rather exciting and busy time ahead. But I'm thankful for all of your support and encouragement! :D

Things are just starting to take off ;)

Lift Off

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Feeling kinda down so I headed on up

Sunday afternoon it took me a little time to realize I was in a bit of a glum funk. It didn't present itself as my being a jackass or surly man, but rather as feeling a sort of restless boredom. And I very seldom get bored. I was feeling irratible and now that I look back I think I know what it was. Sunday was a sunny beautiful day. The world beckoned. And I missed my friends.

I moved back to my hometown over a year ago to live with my Grandpa. And we have our share of laughs and play a lot of cribbage (a card game). I've been challenged, struggled, learned, and grown during my time here. This very blog and my renewed creative energies being invested in my writing, photography, and the emergence of my youtube videos, can to some degree be attributed to the fact that I haven't had the opportunity to just go adventure with my good friends who now live at least one (some two) ferry rides away from me.

So Sunday I was missing my friends and feeling kinda booey. And even though I didn't know it in my head, my body knew what to do.... get me out walking.

Sechelt, the town I currently live in, is situated on an isthmus, the little connecty bit, between the main continent of North America and the Sechelt Peninsula. If that little sandy piece of land were taken out by a natural catastrophe, or giant space robots, the Sechelt Peninsula would become Sechelt Island. So it's pretty flat between the two beaches but bordered by some hillish wooded beckons. To which call I heeded as I strode upward.

Up a hill

Through to town


Getting off the scooter-traveled terrain of the lowlands and into the greater reality of nature always helps soothe my spirit and take my mind into curious places. I muse upon the geology of the terrain, the way it fosters the various ecologies and systems, the way the hydrological cycle has impacted and shaped the land. I see how the plants have grown based on their various strategies to get the water, light, and the nutrients they need to survive.

The two trees in the middle are actually one tree

I encounter and think upon humanity's role in the region and place. How the first people would have encountered the area and traveled this very shore to spread out upon the continent. How would it have looked before the Europeans came? How did it look when my great-grandfather came? How it has changed in my time. How it will change after me. We are never at a fixed point. We exist in the midst of process, of rise and fall, ebb and flow, action, consequence, and process.

How it would seem through the eyes of an insect. Born, live, mate, die. Repeat.
A whole lifetime in such a short time for us.
Or through the eyes of a Hummingbird. Flower Flower. Slow moving objects to fly around.
What about the lifespan of a tree? Would we seem like insects flitting about? Except with chainsaws and axes and the ability to drop them before they could register what was going on? Ents move slowly and think slowly.
What about the age and process of a landmass, of a mountain range? Being pushed up, glaciated, worn down, carved by rivers... clothed and covered with moss and lichen and trees and shrubs.

When I get outside I get outside of myself. I am once again immersed in reality. Immersed in the vibrant amazing complicated and wonderous world we inhabit.

And us. What is our role through this? In what ways do we impact, relate, change, be changed by, the world around us.

Natural and Man-made graffiti

Are there some petroglyphs in the world that were taboo like graffiti when they were first painted? Did some artistic people go to hidden places to leave a mark on a stone? What is it for a human to leave a mark that will outlast them? We all leave marks; very few of them on stone.

That's a car

I broke a sweat and breathed in greater gasps as I made my way through the bush and into an old quarry. I bet these places invoke a wide range of different feelings and terms for many people. So it is with many things in life. It is simple to see it in one light and argue from a single position. I have difficulties with this method often in life because I have a tendency to see more facets.

Here is a video of some of my process and experience in that quarry. A Maplemusketeer method moment if you will ;) (near the end it gets windy/louder, my apologies in advance as I just film with my little point and shoot camera)

in what some would term an ugly place I saw the following..
Recent Past


Stories told

Up Through



Growing Up





Perspective is quite the thing. How we see the small things and how we see the big things.

A rock quarry as an example for humanity.

Is it simply a case of ugly/beautiful, good/bad, destruction/creation? Or is there something deeper, threaded through it all?

A process and a wisdom that moves and breathes and whispers.

Now it's time for me to go home for lunch, and then outside. To look and see and learn.
Be well and may you learn to hear the whispers deep and good..

and here's a moment's whimsy at a garage sale

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Dare to walk beyond the boundary...

Chapman Creek Photo Ramble - April 12, 2011

Doesn't look like much...

Doesn't look like much does it? End of a logging road. A little turn around. A burnt-out car seat and debris from past rambunctious shenanigans engaged in by those who engage themselves thusly....

but what happens for those willing to enter into the woods? To get off of the main roads and step out of their cars? Well.... lets see shall we? ;)

You may find many varied types of life both flora and fauna.
And fungus.
Shoes for Scale

Take a friend, and their dog (Roman) along for camaraderie (as well as to provide scale in all of your photos) (and that dog is just so dang cute. Don't worry. You'll see more of him later)
In the woods

Ramble and explore amongst the forest
walk around corners
down paths and up trees

The High Road

Scramble down between roots and fractured rocks
Moss festooned upon any perch it can find
Ferns bursting forth as they have since the dinos
Green and wonderous

Wending Down

and learn from a dog named Roman. Who finds fear and, instead of stopping and leaving, finds a different angle to tackle the situation. Then finds fear again and gets support from friends.. before continuing on to get where he wants to go.

Alongside a creek in the forest.

Where it can be quiet and still
though the log jam debris speaks of times more turblulent with higher waters hurtling logs like bathtub toys.

Still Creekside

Turbulent times indeed.

Turbulent Times

But there is a beauty to engage and embrace from whichever your precarious location. Though for all of our mothers' sake use caution.

For water does not know compassion. It is the giver and the taker.
The means by which we live.

Water Flow

Do we respect water enough?
I think we take it for granted around here. But that's old news.

And some can't bear to look, to see, to notice the commodification of water in the world. Just like how they say the super-villain, Dominic Greene, in the last Bond movie didn't really seem that threatening.. or have much pizazz.

Do we look away?
Some can't bear to look..

Or look ahead in the face straight on.
He's such a poser 2

This is just about a dog right? A cute dog admittedly.

Or do we all strike various poses in our day
He's such a poser

and try not to think about that odd feeling niggling away in the back of brain boxes that says... still there is better.

Easy enough to say something's broken. But to talk about better? to ponder better? to move forward and progress to better? What is this better? Is it false hope? like so much hope that came and went and came and went? Is it better?

I say that the pondering and talking about this issue.. is a fraction of an action of better.

A taking notice. A cool salt laden blast of fresh air blown in on the wind that makes you remember you're actually breathing right now. Our lungs are exchanging oxygen and carbon dioxide back and forth and we live. Better? We do not know how to fix every ill that ails a person. But we know more. And we learn more.

Though this acquisition of information is not to be the sum of our goal and aim. We would likely all admit that data alone does not answer all problems. This doesn't mean the quest for knowledge is wrong... or misguided.. but that it merely is not ALL. Learn learn learn and delve the mysteries and wonders of creation. It is a fascinating place that we get to explore.

Pure liquid awesome

So what do we add to this knowledge, this intelligence, this gathering of fact? Is it the journey of the depth of character and awareness? Is it the pursuit of questions like what are human rights? how do my actions impact those I am connected with? what is honour? what is it to realize the common shared humanity of all of us linked in laughter and pain and wonder and suffering and victory and glory on this spinning giant system of systems in the middle of space with which we cruise the cosmos?

Compassion. Empathy. Wisdom. Awareness.

Pain is a common language that all of us speak and have known.
And no matter the difference in ideology or hair colour or station in life,
our lungs still take in that carbon dioxide and exchange it with oxygen.

We can look around and see that things are not perfect. We can deconstruct. We can poke out eyes and toss hate and shun and strike those that are not like us....

Except.. they are like us.
What we are doing to others we are doing to ourselves.
That pain you inflict you have felt. This is part of the world we live.
And an opportunity to reach out, sometimes not with words, but a smile, or eye contact, or a conversation. For we too have felt pain.

And we're still here.
We still smile when he hear a child laugh.
When we see a sunset.
When someone walks alongside us. With us.

We move forward, we can. It is an option before us we can choose.

To stand alongside one another and explore this earth, and to seek knowledge and to choose to create and develop better ways.

A man and his dog

To call or text or email a friend and see if they and their dog would like to head outside for some CO2/O2 exchange.
On the way out

And now some various random things that may or may not be connected..

An exhortation to go explore outside

A Man and his dog - with waterfall and log jumping action

I walked really close to some coyotes on my way home from a work a couple days ago

Monday, April 11, 2011

On the edge

On the edge by maplemusketeer
On the edge, a photo by maplemusketeer on Flickr.

Spring is springing over here.

And that burgeoning fantastic is in the air.
Change is afoot. Or perhaps at hand.

Regardless it is felt.

Ebb and flow along the sea and in our hearts as we chart our steps and then divert at the cause of life.

We may plan and save and scurry away for the thoughts of a day and another but yet things have a tendency to unravel and grow.

Or so it seems to me.

Each day on the edge. Each day anew. Each day to muse and mutter and muster and marshal one to purpose.

Alone, never, the lie often.

Gifts and abilities buried beneath the day to day dross and disconnect.

Bang a drum. Clap your hands. Stamp your feet. Stand up. Because we can.

Worth hidden in the cupboard. Behind the canned beans that no one likes.

Eeking and peeking out.

Carefully, cautiously, constantly moving forward at times in spurts; at times by a whisker.

Here we are again.

Standing on the edge.

Waves crash upon the rocks bared teeth covered in barnacles and seaweed.

We see the rocks and allow our feet to remain bolted in place.

Rather than fly......
for the edge is always an opportunity.

Beckoning beyond.
Beckoning to rise up.
Beckoning to being anew.
Beckoning still.....

Welcome to the edge.

Friday, April 08, 2011

Writings & Musings from the past year

The past year has been a season of ups and downs, challenges and opportunities. Moods assault and retreat, envelop and enfold and embrace. And sometimes they find me with pen in hand.

Undercut by the creek

Aug. 13, 2010

Dying a day at a time
Monotony and choices, perspective and fears
Vice-like grip that crushes soul leeching the marrow
Dormant life tenuously clinging buried deep
Longing to burst free. Desiring to run and gambol.
Feeling bound to obligation and responsibilities
Knowing they exist only because they are acknowledged by self
I believe them. I empower them. I am beholden then to I.

Lies made truth. Slave to my own shackles on chains of belief.

Yet I live. I resist for I am not resigned.
Possibility and potential always whisper and tempt one cursed to dream.
At the heart of the deepest essence we are free.
All else surrounds.

Sept 12, 2010

Talon on metal. Crows, on the patio roof
Nourishing rain falls, sky hangs dark and grey
More precious becomes the sun and hints of blue sky
When the veil is pierced a collective glorious sigh
Perspective is key
Sun and rain in balance with purpose: my beloved rainforest
A world with pain and suffering; laughter and joy
Perspective is key

Do you think beauty, truth, love are temporary momentary fleeting fancies?
Are they leprechauns and elves told to children and seen as a nice idea
a lovely whimsy
a false hope

Or are they a foundational deepness everpresent?
I know what I know and you wish.


To be grasped and shaken by emotions that have taken me
by the heart's beat and choken my words
love given is gone and no right to return

So tread carefully beneath the facade
I think of her still though the years have passed by
while I look to grow older on the outside
but at these few times my heart remembers
my breath catches
my soul aches
as it will in these times forever
until my heart beats no more

love given is gone and no right to return.

I'm not sure when it happened.
I don't know how it occurred: how she slipped past my guard.
How she made it through so deep into rarely walked territory.
I miss her when I think of her
so I try not to think of her. Often.
It usually works.
Except for rainy days in foreign places when I'm left alone
with myself and time.
What does it mean my "I love you"? That will never be known.
Just felt inside as a hint and a ponder,
and a memory of rainy days and smiles.

Thanks for the smiles. They'll always be with me too.

Rainy day smiles passage of time
Moments of magic looked back on
I hear you laugh and say my name
I see your face, your eyes. I love your eyes.
You know me too well, I fear, better than many
better than most. I cannot hide from you,
except that you no longer ask.

Love given is gone and no right to return.

I partly wish I could close this door,
this chapter in my heart. But I cannot.
If I could I would not.
Heart doors don't close.
Only open.
Love given is gone.

Falling Water

Oct 7, 2010

Time the running
never caught
never held
always pouring out flowing away
most valuable freely given overlooked
each moment unnecessary
each moment opportunity
each moment a moment


Oh to see that the gift is good

For the wisdom to be understood

For the strength to climb the hill

For the ear to hear be still

Light and wet

Oct 9, 2010

To be respectful
To be aware

To live as an example being still, being love, being heaven on earth.
To feel frustration and anger lead into compassion
To be human possibility and choose better choices

To look around and see
to listen with intent to hear
to accept ones location and learn
to breathe in and out and in and out
to remember and forget and remember and forget
to wake up from slumber to return
to finger paint freely forms as gifts
to face fear, feel fear, and go on with the
stroke of a pen
strum of a string
breath past a chord
step out the door
eyes touching gaze
to be afraid
to be allowed to be afraid
to see and know and accept fear
in me, in you, in he, in she, we
are together in fear. in pain. in sorrow.
in laughter. in joy. in triumph.
to know that you and me, she and he, are all we.
To love. To cheer. To wipe tears.
To hug and hold the young and old
Insanity the vanity and profanity
of I
alone apart unseen disconnected
that the truth may set free.


To create a world from the nothing with the stroke of a pen
To interact with environments and orders on levels aplenty
Cognition and thought from where comes the seed?
Where does the first musing first fire?
A cascade of collisions as electrolytes dance and
impulses fly down dendrites and neural speedways.
Eyes observe and the brain connects, muscles that manipulate
a black pen between fingers and thumb.
We can trace and track the signal from brain to fingertip, and return.
But from where does the idea come?
Observe and encounter experiences abounding
through tactile and vision, taste, scent, and sound...
to become..


To see and accept others as they are
as not being me
To honour and appreciate them
Tick tock bird clock on the wall
We both wear wool slippers
His foot moves in time to a song I don't hear
The moment passes

Rain on Vancouver Island

Nov 9, 2010

A place familiar in part from the past and processes gone before beyond.
New linoleum reflects under squeaky shoes
of young adults emerging, arriving, embarking to life.
A college cafeteria where once friends were found
A view out the window over the parking lot I lived below
A view towards the 3 bedroom place 6 of us dwelled, laughed, learned.

Time is a distance, Minkowski space.
Eight years ago I was not in this place so familiar
My roomate not in those trees I see out the window
forcefully and fervently encouraging the leaves' departure
Universal expansion, planets orbit, cellular replacement
A brand new moment and place never to be again.
And gone; a memory glimmers as rainfalls.

March 22, 2011

Different mediums present different challenges for me
Photographs are nice because what you see is
what you click and what you get
Or at least I've learned to see and click and get.

Drawing irks me. Or rather I get irked at my inability
to put on paper the indescript idea/feeling visual I have in my brain.
I let this irking stop me often from drawing more often. I'm
slowly working through that.

I'm learning more about my tricks
for procrastinating. My fears and perfectionism, and the little
things that help me get past that sometimes.

Often when I think "I should write now"
I'll end up staring daunted at a screen. Unsure where to start.
Apparently the trick today was to pick up my pen
turn to my notebook,
and just start writing...

Clouds over Texada Island