As you wiggle your way up the Santa Monicas on Topanga Canyon Road from where we live in the Valley, you find a mini-park on your left called “Top of Topanga Overlook.” A couple of benches, some picnic tables, the smell of sagebrush and a stupendous look back over the San Fernando Valley. Here’s a photo I took even knowing I would fail to capture the view:
It’s the best me and my lil camera could do, folks. Sorry. The secret to taking great landscape photos — photos that somehow capture the scale and spirit of a place — is to be Ansel Adams. I’m not him.
We’re looking northwest. The Blue Meanie hand indicates more or less where our little house would be if you could see through the hillside bearing that stand of cypresses. Those mountainous hills in the distance are the Simi Hills — or so I think. Can’t quite tell yet where one range peters out and another pops up. Between the overlook and the Simi Hills stretches the west end of the Valley: Woodland Hills, West Hills, something else, something else.
I put in the images of the purple eagle and the pink badger using “trick photography.” They aren’t really there. But I felt in my heart of hearts that you, my readers, would love to see a purple eagle and a pink badger.