Global Lens Reflections on life, the universe, and everything

A Year in Pictures – 2023
A Year in Pictures - 2023

I don’t have to go far to make a photograph. This past year’s images include many captured in my own back yard, from a Red-shouldered hawk to a strolling millipede, from a Pacific tree frog to a pair of young racoons. Working at home I captured a rather tired-looking longhorn bee, a shy milkweed bug, […]

A year in Pictures – 2022
A year in Pictures - 2022

As 2022 began, I continued my fascination with the images crafted by the Spanish photographer Xavi Bou, who captures the trajectories of birds in flight by extracting individual frames from high-speed video and then combining them into one image file. It’s a process that allows us to “see” something our eyes alone can’t visualize. Here’s […]

A Year in Pictures – 2021
A Year in Pictures - 2021

When I got my first coronavirus vaccine shot almost a year ago, I had high hopes that 2021 would prove different than its predecessor. I started to make plans for trips abroad. And then came shot number two, and I felt ready to take on the world. Sadly, the world wasn’t as fortunate as me. […]

A year in pictures – 2020
A year in pictures - 2020

2020 started off strangely for me, and then it only grew more weird. In January, I had surgery to swap out an old hip joint for a modern titanium one. That meant two or three months of rehab, and then I had plans to hit the road, starting with a trip to South Sudan. Beyond […]


Today is International Winnowing Day. Well, not really. I just made that up. But it could be, given how winnowing is such a widespread chore around the world. It is quintessential women’s work in that it’s common, difficult, and underappreciated. I just worked with a client who needed a winnowing image, and when I searched […]

2016 – A year in photos
2016 - A year in photos

There’s a military phrase that, despite my aversion to military terms, works well for photography. Some places I visit are clearly “target-rich environments,” in that it’s hard not to capture compelling images because the people and their surroundings are so beautiful. I’m not referring to some misplaced sense of the exotic. People aren’t interesting just […]

2015 – A year in photos
2015 - A year in photos

When Arthur “Weegee” Fellig, a New York City street photographer in the 1930s and 1940s, was asked what the secret was to his images, he responded, “f8 and be there.” In other words, you gotta show up. During this past year, that’s what I tried to do. From the streets of Pasco, Washington, to the […]

Getting comfortable
Getting comfortable

Photography can be, at its best, an intimate window into people’s lives. Yet intimacy implies proximity. The war photographer Robert Capa understood that. He said, “If your pictures aren’t good enough, you’re not close enough.” At a certain point, however, getting close can induce discomfort in the subject of the image, making them change what […]

2014 – A year in photos
2014 - A year in photos

In these waning minutes of 2014, I want to offer my thanks to those people around the world who let me share in their lives for a few moments or a few days this year. Because they were willing to tell me their stories, or let me into their homes and neighborhoods to document their […]

Indonesia: Tsunami+10
Indonesia: Tsunami+10

People throughout South Asia will soon pause to remember the giant waves that ten years ago this month swept over thousands of coastal communities, killing hundreds of thousands of people and leaving millions homeless. This is the story of several of those communities. Immediately after the December 26, 2004, tsunami, I flew to Sri Lanka to […]

Advent images
Advent images

Advent is a time of waiting–for the incarnation, for justice, for peace. Over the centuries the church has developed a series of measures to help us develop the practice of waiting, everything from different liturgical colors to candles and wreathes to calendars with little doors to special music (though it’s an unfair fight: for every […]

Jumping Rope
Jumping Rope

When I was a kid at Lincoln Elementary School in Vancouver, Washington, I preferred the monkey bars during recess and would frequently hang there, often upside down, watching my classmates jump rope while chanting some rhythmic rhyme. In that pre-modern universe it was only girls that jumped rope, of course. Any attempt by a boy […]