Dear Ones,

Earlier this month I made a road trip through six western states. The trip was built around the Nightscaper Conference in Utah, a gathering of astrophotographers teaching and learning approaches and techniques for making memorable images of the night sky.

I mostly camped in my van. Highlights of the trip included a gorgeous night in the Eastern Sierra photographing the Milky Way during the Aquarids Meteor Shower, and being at Bryce Canyon for sunrise, one of the most spectacular places I have ever encountered. 

Thoughts of dearly departed Mayan spiritual teacher, Elder Hunbatz Men, popped into my head while creating the image attached to this post, depicting pre-dawn skies overlooking Bryce Canyon. Hunbatz used to tell us that our goal, and even our responsibility, is to remember that we are cosmic beings. Rock, Tree, and Star are all members of the cosmic family we are a part of. I felt such kinship with the characters in this picture that I thought of my surroundings as “Family.”

I am excited about this new chapter where I am learning astrophotography, a new passion that connects me more deeply with the world.

I look forward to revisiting Pacific Northwest places I have so appreciated during the daytime, seeing them with renewed eyes at night, and hopefully sharing more images that honor our connection with the cosmos. 

With Love and Blessings,

James (and Lisa) Papp