Sunday, December 31, 2023

"Cloud Passage"...

A passage can be moving from one state to the next. Clouds provide us many passages, including the textures of light and moisture in the sky as well as land. I found this skyscape striking in textures, light, depth and shape.

Holla Bend National Wildlife Refuge, Arkansas.
Photo # IM7_9891aencbw.
(c) Kelly Shipp

Friday, December 29, 2023

"Graceful Flight"...

 "Graceful Flight"

As most of you know one of my favorite subjects are birds of prey. I've studied them deeply for most of my life. This is a photograph of a Turkey Vulture in flight. I photographed this raptor at Petit Jean State Park in the winter of 2005.
What I like most about this photograph is that it represents the graceful flight of these vultures. They are masters of manuevering thermals, allowing effortless, endless flight time. These birds of prey aren't often appreciated for all the benefit they provide to nature, which among many, includes removing dead animals (carrion) before they can spread disease. Their highly acidic stomach acid allows them to eat carcasses without getting sick. They have a keen sense of smell, among the best in the bird world, and incredible vision. This species is the largest vulture in Arkansas, with a wingspan of 6-feet, standing about 30-inches tall.
One of the easiest distinguishing marks of this bird is the beautiful silver lining of the underside of the primary feathers, extending most of the length of each wing.  Another mark is the red head. In flight, they are easily identifiable from their V-shaped wings in flight.
Comments welcome.

Turkey Vulture (Cathartes aura), Petit Jean State Park, Arkansas 2005.
Photo # set4_DSC_0174hdr

Sunday, December 3, 2023

"Homesteads of Madison County"...

 "Homesteads of Madison County"

I enjoy visiting Madison County and photographing its many stories.
This is a cool home built around 1900.  It's a home where Walter Elmer Starnes (1878-1943) and wife Ethel (1883-1962) lived when they married in 1901.

Huntsville, Arkansas (Madison County)
Photo # IM7_9844-51abw.
(c) Kelly Shipp



Wednesday, November 29, 2023

Natural Light...

 "Natural Light"

This is another from my series of this abandoned school.
Built in the 1930's, an old sofa from a later period is all that remains in this old schoolroom at Carden Bottom school. The corner of the room, near the outside doors, was the first to become victim to the weather and erosion, causing a natural skylight.
Sadly what was left of this abandoned school has burned since my photographs.

Location: Carden Bottom, Arkansas.
Photo # IMG_6332-37hdr2bws.
(c) Kelly Shipp

Thursday, November 23, 2023

"Celebrating Life"...


"Celebrating Life"

Trees are fascinating. This tree always captures my attention on my hikes. You can see it has certainly had it's challenges over it's life, yet is still celebrating life. It looks like it is twisting and reaching out at the same time. I waited for the sun to be at good place. Hope you enjoy.

Conway, Arkansas.
Photo # IM6_9482bw2.

Sunday, November 19, 2023

Two of a Kind...

"Two of a Kind"

Not unlike humans, trees have a unique life, each with challenges and seasons of their own. It is interesting, that trees that grow up together can yet still be so different and yet so alike. Nature has such an entertaining yet reliable symmetry.

Photo # IM6_9757-64lmbw2

Tuesday, October 31, 2023

"Nature's Skylight"...

If you visit a place often enough, you have opportunities to photograph special moments. This was one of those moments of patience as a storm began to clear near sunset.  The light was changing dramatically fast, so I had to think how I wanted to frame the clouds and sunlight while thinking about the exposures. These are the moments I really enjoy nature photography.

Near Petit Jean State Park, Arkansas, 2008.
Photo # 8302_KS20064-76bw.


Saturday, October 21, 2023

"Artistic Movement"...

 "Artistic Movement"

This is a photograph from 2012 that I haven't yet shared. This was an intentional, artistic photograph of these ducks as they flew across the lake.
Something keeps drawing me back to this photograph, possibly how the imperfection of balance between the ducks in flight, arguably not as uniform as geese.

Lake Beaverfork, Conway, Arkansas.
Photo # IMG_0981bwc.
(c) Kelly Shipp


Saturday, October 14, 2023

"Cascade Levels"...

As with most of nature, beauty is often in the details. With one look at this photograph, one may only see a waterfall. But if you study it closely, you'll easily see many waterfalls. One could easily carve sections of this scene into their own photographs, which is a perspective I usually entertain, but I wanted to share how nature can often provide us more than we can begin to appreciate. Slow down. Enjoy and appreciate what nature is giving us before it is gone.

Petit Jean State Park, Arkansas.
Photo # K03_2917bw.
(c) Kelly Shipp



Saturday, October 7, 2023

"Clouds that shape"...

 "Clouds that shape"

Central Arkansas.
Photo # IM3_3852bw2



Tuesday, October 3, 2023

Where Branches Collide...

 "Where Branches Collide"

Bell Slough Wildlife Management Area, central Arkansas.
Photo # IMG_7166-67a.
(c) Kelly Shipp


Saturday, August 12, 2023

"Leaf as a Tree"...

Photographing leaves is a joy since they're all unique as we are. What is interesting is how similar the structure of a leaf compares to the structure of a tree.  This is a digital pencil sketch of photograph of an oak leaf from last fall.
Notice how the veins and midrib look like the branches and trunk of a tree.  Even the Lamina (background of the leaf) is very textured.

More on this series to come.  Comments welcome.
(c) Kelly Shipp
Photo # K03_4324_drw_vint_br

Sunday, July 23, 2023

Clipper Deluxe...

 "Clipper Deluxe"


Here's another from my series with Paul V.
Paul has a lot of memories to share and he knows a lot about vintage autos. He had a lot to say about his 1946 Packard Clipper Deluxe.
I wanted a single photograph that depicted him with car and its environment.

Madison County, Arkansas.
Photo # IM6_8954bw.

Saturday, July 15, 2023

Old Boxley Church...


"Old Boxley Church"

This church sits in a beautiful valley where elk and cattle are often seen grazing together. The building was built around 1877 and served as both a church and a school. The school later consolidated with the Jasper School District, but the church remained. While a new church was built next door, the old church remains in use as a community center.

Located in Newton County, Arkansas, this church is in Boxley Valley near the town of Ponca.

Photo # IM6_8842-57bw.
(c) Kelly Shipp


Monday, July 10, 2023




Water movement is captivating. The crosscurrent of this stream caught my eye as the sun highlighted the water in the stream's variant of flows.

Woolly Holly State Park, Arkansas
Photo # K03_2209bw.
(c) Kelly Shipp


Saturday, June 10, 2023

Water & Air...

 "Water & Air"

A small waterfall at a nearby state park pushes trapped air below the surface and they resurface as bubbles. On occasion the water pressure for these return bubbles are trapped longer once they return.
The simplicity of the elements in this photograph help accentuate the water and bubbles. Hope you enjoy.

Woolly Hollow State Park, Arkansas.
Photo # K03_2270bwc.
(c) Kelly Shipp

Saturday, May 20, 2023

"Brief Moments"...

Here's another from my series of Paul V, from Madison County.
I was honored that he let me photograph him in his environment. Toward the end of the afternoon, he was gracious to give me a ride in his 1930 Ford Model A. There was a brief moment, before we left where he paused as if reflecting on life - happy. A grin came across his face as he looked in his rear-view mirror. A moment later, he looked up and was ready to drive down the highway.
Moments like this are fleeting, as is life. We should pause and be thankful for the experiences we've had. They are brief and fleeting - let's enjoy them.

Paul V. in his 1930 Ford Model A.
Madison County, Arkansas.
Photo # K03_3648bw.

Thursday, May 11, 2023

"High Noon"...

Small towns are a treat, especially those with town squares. They all have a story to tell. Small towns often preserve history much better than others.  This building captivated my attention. The double doors, bell, the single light fixed high. I suspect it could tell many stories.
I hope some of you enjoy these photos as I hope to preserve these before they are lost.  I hope to tell the story of this building someday.

Kingston, Arkansas.
Photo # IM6_8901-6pbw.
(c) Kelly Shipp

Wednesday, April 26, 2023

The Art of Instruments...

 "The Art of Instruments"

Here's another from my series of Paul V. from Madison County. Paul is an incredibly talented, yet humble, maker of many things. One of his many talents is making string instruments. In the foreground of this photograph, you can see a result of his woodworking mastery. Surrounding it, you'll easily find many tools, parts, feed sacks, random books, sanders, drills and other miscellaneous. He is certainly in his element while in his workshop. He enjoys his craftmanship and it shows in his results.
Comments welcome.

Madison County, Arkansas.
Photo # IM6_8931as.
(c) Kelly Shipp

Tuesday, April 11, 2023

"A Message of Longevity"...

Here's another from my recent series of "Paul V", from Madison County, Arkansas.
Paul takes great care of his 1930 Ford Model A. I wanted to capture a frame that tells a story of time and place. Most of what you see in this photograph is quickly disappearing: the simplicity of how the early trucks were built, how well homes were constructed to last, and the longevity of Oak trees.  What you don't see clearly in the photograph, is off to the right, in the background. Trees cut for coal. There's much to say in this photograph, which is why I was compelled to compose this. We need to take care of what we have. It is disappearing.

Madison County, Arkansas.
Photo # K03_3657bw.
(c) Kelly Shipp

Wednesday, April 5, 2023

"Craftsman Cave"...

You may remember my past photos of Paul V. from Madison County, Arkansas. I recently spent time with him and produced more photos of his work and talents.
Some men have a "man cave", but Paul has a 'craftsman cave'.  You won't find any HD TV's nor couches, instead you'll see a workshop of projects, tools, and parts. The tools and machines are a mix of those he has made himself, and others vintage yet still working. In this photograph, you'll see some projects in-progress including hand-made string instruments on the table. On the far right, you'll see a working lathe machine. This is just one corner of his many wood-working talents.

I respect and appreciate the time spent with Paul. He's very humble, yet he has so much broad and depth of knowledge in making things himself. More photos to come.

Madison County, Arkansas.
Photo # K03_3471c2.

Monday, March 27, 2023

"Husley Bend School"...


"Husley Bend School"

The Hulsey Bend School is a historic, one-room schoolhouse building in rural southeastern Independence County, Arkansas. It was built in 1898 and annexed with Oil Trough School in 1947.

I am concerned about the quality of care of this landmark. It is rapidly deteriorating.

Photo # IM5_8740abw.
(c) Kelly Shipp

Thursday, March 23, 2023



Better than Nyquil.
Woolly Hollow State Park, Arkansas.
Photo # K03_2736bw3.

Sunday, March 5, 2023

Light and Dark...

 "Light & Dark"
Waterfall, Woolly Hollow State Park, Arkansas.

Photo # K03_2322bw.
(c) Kelly Shipp


Friday, February 24, 2023

"Nature's Strength"...


Snow collects and stands on the smallest of branches of these reeds.

Photo # IM5_7268bw.
(c) Kelly Shipp, Winter 2022.

Tuesday, February 21, 2023

"Pathways of Light"...

The forest offers many pathways of light. Maybe that's what intrigues us about walks in the woods. Each path offers a different array of mazes of trees. Some are clear paths and some are obscure. So is life. Instead of making the best of what you have, instead treat life as an exploratory walk in the woods.

Photo # IM5_8389bw.

Sunday, February 12, 2023

"Three is a crowd"...

In April, 2006, I photographed these dragonflies mating in a marsh at Holla Bend National Wildlife Refuge.  The mating pair often dipped the other in water as you can see in this photograph. The third is hovering.

Holla Bend National Wildlife Refuge, Ar.
April, 2006. Photo # 200641_DSC_3063c.