Derek Johnson Muses

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Through Trees and Branches Across the Nation


Presidio of San Francisco, April 2011

Whenever I would take a photo like this, I would think it was great until it was on my computer.

Kansas, Fall 2009

Kansas, Fall 2009

I mean the bush in the foreground dwarfs the shoreline in back. It’s incredible!

Southern California Palms

California Palms on Coronado Island, San Diego, California, December 2009

A couple of them I took when I was on a hyper-relaxing vacation in sunny weather while Nebraska drowned in snow. Those photos, I took because the world seemed to slow down.

San Antonio, March 2011

San Antonio, March 2011

Some of them were taken when I was in the south, amidst the ruins of a Catholic mission from several ceturies ago.


Sleep Bear Dunes, May 2010

This one was from one of the greatest evening of photographing, along Sleeping Beer Dunes in northern Michigan. The shores and winds run forever, and it’s a great place to get away from city stress and get into nature.

Tree, Interrupted. Sleeping Bear Dunes, Michigan. May 2010.

The wind-wiped-out half-tree above is one of the hallmarks of Sleeping Bear Dunes. Bottom line: if you’re a tree, hope your seed gets blown inland a ways.

Central Wisconsin off WISC HWY 21, September 2013

Central Wisconsin off WISC HWY 21, September 2013

Can you tell by the fuzziness of the leaves here that these are classic fall foilage in the woodlands of central Wisconsin, miles off of the grid, or does it just look like the lint you pull out of your dryer?

Middle of Nowhere, Who Knows When

Middle of Nowhere, Who Knows When

This burnt building is in a barren area of the country, and that is an understatement. Every 40 miles, there is a town of around 3,000 and that about it for 500 miles in any direction. In between are a bunch of small burnt-down ghettos like this one.


White noise.

There are of course plenty of trees closer to my roost, like these in the Platte River valley off Nebraska Highway 92, lighting up the lowly March morning sky. (Okay, these I did something with when I got them on the computer.

Florida Tree

Florida Tree

This is a special one. I used to keep an 8×10 print of this tree within line sight of my bed, so I could see it when I got up in the morning and fell asleep at night. It always seemed menacing, like an orge.


Open Box

This group of sticks was on the borders of one of the fields I used to go see out at Hastings. There’s a farm in the distance, not that you can see it clearly.

Living Room

Living Room

And these sticks are a few miles from where I live. How about that.


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