Saturday, July 31, 2021

Release the Fear


I can't believe I've never featured a photo of this statue before on my site.  It has been sitting on the corner of Central Avenue and Roosevelt streets for many years.  

This sculpture was created by Robert John Miley and is made of melted down weapons that were used in violent crimes throughout the state of Arizona.  Miley spent 10 years gathering materials and funds for the statue.  The city of Phoenix chose the location and Arizona law enforcement donated the confiscated weapons.  It stands 24 feet tall and weighs 8.5 tons.

The base of the statue is configured so bits of the weapons are easily recognizable.  

Miley named the statue for an organization he founded called Release the Fear, Inc. The non-profit was organized to "counter the effects of violence in our society". 

Friday, July 30, 2021



These two appear to be having a good heart to heart talk.  It reminds me that friendship is such an important part of all of our lives.  It's nice to have a good friend to talk things over with and to help us through life's ups and downs.  These two look like best friends.  

Thursday, July 29, 2021

Gazing Skyward


I pointed my camera up once again to capture some tall buildings and interesting architecture in downtown Phoenix.  My friends Julie & Dave work in one of those two towers to the right.  The buildings are connected by a skywalk.

This building has housed many different offices in the past but I see that Arizona State University has started occupying a large amount of office space.  ASU's downtown campus has grown substantially over the last few years.

The Luhrs Tower in downtown Phoenix is one of my favorite historic buildings.  It dates to 1929 and was built in Art Deco style which I love.  I did two posts about this building back in 2017.  You can see them here and here.  

Wednesday, July 28, 2021

Raindrops Were Falling


One more set of photos from my walk in the rain last Sunday.  Some of the desert rose blooms looked a bit bedraggled from the rain but this one was still perky.

I never walk at the garden in July because of the heat so I didn't realize there were would be some blooms on cactus.  This fishhook barrel cactus had a crown of blooms on top.  

Here is another one that had some small pink blooms on it.  I got pretty wet walking around in the rain but it was worth it.  

Tuesday, July 27, 2021

A Walk In the Rain


We had a rainy weekend here in Phoenix and all that rain brought the temperatures down to reasonable levels.  I decided to take a walk at the Desert Botanical Garden.  The skies were overcast but it wasn't raining at my house when I left on Sunday morning but it was raining at the garden when I arrived.  I decided to give it a try anyway.  It was a short but wonderful walk.  

I love seeing everything shining with water.  I and my camera both got a bit wet but I still loved every minute.  

I don't often see the Chihuly sculptures dripping with water so I stopped for a photo.  All and all, it was a very pleasant weekend and nice break from our searing hot temperatures.  

Monday, July 26, 2021



This mural was found at the Churchill, that restaurant/retail center that is made out of shipping containers.  I photographed it a little over a year ago back when life was normal.  There is no signature on it so I kept doing periodic searches to see if I could find the artist. Then I noticed the hash-tag at the very bottom.  It didn't tell me who the artist was but I looked for #meowymemural on Instagram and came up with a variety of photos of couples either getting engaged or posing for wedding photos in front of the mural.   It seems that this mural has some romantic intentions.

Taking part in Monday Murals


Sunday, July 25, 2021

Looking For Reflections


Whenever I'm near the One North Central building in downtown Phoenix, I'm always looking to see what reflections it might be capturing. The most common reflection is of the Renaissance Hotel with its scalloped window decorations.  You can see that hotel here.

In this shot, the hotel is reflected in the windows of the low building instead of that blue glass.

Judging from the positioning of the reflections, I'm wondering if I made my way to the roof of the hotel maybe I could get a full reflection in that curved glass building.  I need to check to see if that can be done. 

I have a new post on Sharon's Sojourns today.  See the Minneapolis skyline.

Saturday, July 24, 2021

The Blessing of Rain


It rained all day yesterday and is supposed to continue raining through Sunday!  It has been so long since we've had steady, all-day rain that it feels a bit like something to celebrate.  

We were supposed to have our Art Challenge Club meeting last night but had to call it off.  Rain like this causes a lot of street flooding and many of our members have to drive all the way across town.  We thought it a safer idea to postpone the meeting.

I'm sure we will be back to our normal sunshine and heat by next week but for now, I'm enjoying this change in weather.  

Friday, July 23, 2021

Spread Your Wings


I love how cormorants spread their wings in the sun to dry them off.  It makes them look rather regal, don't you think?  

I spotted this fellow at the Japanese Friendship Garden.  You wouldn't think there would be any of these water birds in the desert but there are several colonies of them around the valley where there are large water sources.  I wouldn't say that the little lake at the friendship garden was of a size to appeal to these birds so I'm guessing this fellow was just making a visit to check out the fish stock.

Thursday, July 22, 2021

The Blue Hound


I haven't been to the Blue Hound Kitchen in ages but I did recently stop to admire the sign.  This place is located inside the Kimpton Palomar Hotel in downtown Phoenix.  

Before the pandemic, I used to meet a friend here before Phoenix Suns games from time to time.  My friend has been going to the games again but I'm not quite ready for screaming crowds yet.  

I stuck my head inside the door to see if the painting of the blue dog was still there but it had been replaced by this painting of the hunting hounds.  I'm not a fan of fox hunting so I'm kind of wishing the blue dog painting had still been there.

Wednesday, July 21, 2021

Copper Dome


The top of the Arizona State Capitol is crowned with a copper dome and a winged victory weather vane.  There is also some pretty copper scroll work below the gable.

Our capitol building is not as attractive as some of buildings in other states.  But, that dome does add a touch of distinction.  The building was actually built before Arizona became a state and was meant to show that we were ready for statehood.  Construction began in 1898 and it was open for business in 1901.

I recently saw a bit of trivia about that copper dome.  The copper used to create the dome is the equivalent of 4,800,000 pennies.  

Tuesday, July 20, 2021

That Mysterious Unpainted Spot


It was ten years ago when I posted a photo of this very same gate and wondered why that spot above the gate was not painted.  At that time, the house and wall were painted yellow.  I drive by this house two or three times a week and I would always see that spot and sort of chuckle to myself that it was left like that year after year.  This last Saturday, I passed this house again and noticed that it had a new paint job.  The whole house and the wall around the yard has been painted white.  But wait, that same spot above the gate was still unpainted!  I slowed down and turned around to get a photo.

I had originally thought that something must have hung above the gate and was removed and that the owners never got around to painting over that spot.  Now I wonder if there is a deeper meaning for that one spot to be left in a natural tone.  After all, why was it not painted when the rest of the house got a new coat of paint?  Is there some sort of hidden meaning here?  Any ideas?

Monday, July 19, 2021

Meditation Head & More


I found this mural when I was driving around the downtown area.  It seems like I can always find new murals in that part of town.  

I found out that this is a collaboration mural.  The so called "Meditation Head" was painted by Doug Bale.  Then Miguel Ibarra added the flamingos and Aaron Lim the desert sunset clouds.  It's located on the side of the Trans Am Cafe on Grand Avenue.

Taking part in Monday Murals!

Sunday, July 18, 2021

Some Arizona History


The building above is the State Archives and History Building located near the State Capitol.  

In the lobby of that building stands this statue of John Campbell Greenway (1872-1926).  Greenway was a member of Roosevelt's Rough Riders and was a veteran of the Spanish-American war and WWI.  He was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross and three medals from the French for his heroic conduct in battle.  

This statue by Gutzon Borglum was created in 1928 and in 1930 it was placed by Arizona in Statuary Hall at the US Capitol where it stood representing the state of Arizona  until 2015 when it was replaced by a statue of former Senator Barry Goldwater.  

I took a photo of this statue when it was still in Washington D.C. back in 2011 when I was visiting the city.  

In addition to Greenway's distinguished service to his country he was also the husband of Isabella Greenway who was the first congresswoman from Arizona.  

Isabella Greenway was also the founder of one of my favorite places to stay when I visit Tucson Arizona, The Arizona Inn.  She, like her husband was a leader and savvy businesswoman.  If you click the link you can read a little more about her amazing life and see photos from the Arizona Inn.

I have a new post on Sharon's Sojourns today.  See where Richard Branson was launched into space.

Saturday, July 17, 2021

Purple Flowers


My friend Julie has an abundance of flowers growing in her garden areas and many of them have purple blooms.  Since I love purple blooms, I've snapped many photos of them at various times of year.  I can't name them all, I just admire them.

I think these might be called sky flowers but I can't be sure about that.  

These pretty blooms are in a large pot along with a cactus that makes a nice background.  

Friday, July 16, 2021

Interesting Finds


When I drove to north Phoenix to photograph the hummingbird mural I featured on Monday, I saw this window with the overflowing window box so I snapped a photo.  That's when I noticed the reflection of the vehicle.

So I walked over to that strange looking vehicle to get a closer look.  I think it just sits here on the corner as a sort of display.  There was nothing to indicate that it was used for anything.  It looks a bit like some type of armored transport but I really have no idea what it was once used for.

When I drove around the back and spotted the "tree" mural, I also found this rather amusing carved log wearing a pair of shorts.  Someone must have thought that this log looked very much like a human torso so they added the shorts confirm the look.  

Thursday, July 15, 2021

A Little Bit of Rain


In most of the world, rain is a necessary nuisance.  Here in the desert it is so rare that we enjoy every drop.  I woke up to rain yesterday morning and it lasted most of the morning.  It wasn't a hard, driving rain so it probably won't do much to fill the reservoirs but it will give the plants a nice drink.

The weather app on my phone says that it will be gone in 24 hours and we will have the sun back once again.  So, I'm enjoying it while it lasts.

Wednesday, July 14, 2021

Shaggy Blooms


I haven't seen these shaggy blooms at the Desert Botanical Garden for at least six years.  They used to have a big patch of them growing in the wildflower garden but for that past few years they haven't made an appearance. 

They are called lemon bee balm.  I have no idea how it got it's name.  It is certainly not lemon colored.  

They are pretty blooms in a shaggy sort of way.  

Tuesday, July 13, 2021

For the Love of Hummingbirds


That hummingbird mural that I posted yesterday got me to thinking about all the photos of hummingbirds I've taken over the years.  I love capturing images of these tiny little creatures.  I looked at my photos from the Desert Botanical Garden last June and found this one with a tiny hummingbird taking a rest in very spiked plant.  

And then I saw this one where I saw a little hummingbird flying next to the wet wall of a fountain.  A good name for this photo would be "Me and My Shadow".  

Then I found many more photos so I decided to just make a collage of some of them.  Hummingbirds are such sweet little birds that I can't help being drawn to them.  

Monday, July 12, 2021

A Hummingbird and More


I recently heard that Lauren Lee, the artist who paints beautiful birds, had painted a hummingbird mural for a north Phoenix business called Organic Living.  So I took a drive out to north 7th Street to find it.  I spotted the hummingbird right away but, I didn't realize until I was out of my car that there were a lot more elements to this mural.

Hovering over the door to the business was a bee.  I didn't want to leave him out so I zoomed in on just this little honeybee waiting for his turn at the flower.

As I was leaving, I noticed another part of the mural was on the back of the building.  A lovely ironwood tree off in the distance.  That sign is hard to read so I'll translate, it says Ironwood Mills Furniture.  I looked up both Organic Living and Ironwood Mills and I can't tell if they are related but I think they might be.  One makes furniture from Arizona sourced wood and one sells organic household items like towels and sheets and more.  

Taking part in Monday Murals