The Textures of the St. Johns Bridge


I rode down to Cathedral Park under the St. Johns bridge here in Portland today. I live only a few blocks away from this park which stretches along an industrial patch of the Willamette River; yet for long stretches, and for no reason at all, I rarely visit.

I've begun to change that recently. I hop on my bike every so often in order to aimlessly scoot down to the river. It's become a more lively place in recent years, partly due to neighborhood gentrification, but also because the city has made a big effort to convince people that the river is a safe place to recreate. There's a little swimming area where kids and dogs play in the hot weather, and a fallow-seeming little beach where parents plop into lawn chairs and clandestinely sip wine from plastic cups.

But this fall feeling is official. Today there were no swimmers, only fishermen on the long dock that stretches out into the river, under the iconic bridge.

The iconic bridge.

Bridge Support
Bridge Support

I typically don't bother taking it's picture, as

a few other people already have that covered

. But seeing things through the viewfinder of a point-and-shoot has helped me to synthesize my environment and has forced my engagement with detail in the past. So after putting the camera down for almost a year, I've picked it back up again. Before I knew what I was doing, I was taking pictures of the bridge. And then before I had a chance to think about it further, I realized I was taking pictures of the bridge without the actual bridge in it.

A New Project

I'm embarking on a new, personal project. It will be something of a time-based project covering 365 days, starting today. I'm not going to go into too many details about it here and now, but I'm sure you will notice it, as a good deal of my recording of it will be here on this blog. The important things are that it a) comprises much of the other, more public work I will make throughout the year, and I b) may not record things here every day, but I will be keeping a running journal that I hope to update frequently, and it c) is very much about personal and artistic growth and how this growth informs my regular art practice.