Seven Devils

Happy Friday everybody! I just got back from a trip to see my family in Detroit, but I thought I’d share this beautiful beach I recently discovered in Southern Oregon with you today. After all, what is better than summer weekends at the beach, right?

I’ve got to admit that this beach is a little difficult to come by, tucked away along a winding mountain road, with just a few signs to guide you to the final destination. But, once you make you crest over the hillsides and encounter the long, undisturbed coastline…..well, it’s pretty freaking awesome. 

This beach was almost deserted when I visited (most likely due to its secluded location), but definitely worth the winding drive. There are plenty of tidal pools, sea creatures, and seashells to keep you beach combing for days. And, yeah, the miles of rocky cliffs aren’t too bad to look at either.

I will admit that everytime I think of this beach the first thing that pops into my head is Florence and the Machine’s “Seven Devils” tune. But, actually, it’s kind of the perfect song for this out-of-the-way secretive shoreline. 

Enjoy your weekend guys! 

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For more info on this particular beach check out the Oregon State Parks site.


Beautiful Bandon by the Sea


Last week I decided to drive a little bit further south along the Oregon coast. What I was met with was a beautiful and rocky beach in Bandon. While Bandon tends to be a bit touristy, with its historic downtown and plentiful souvenir shops, it also has some dreamy and impressive beaches.


There are multiple beaches with varying access points along the coastline of Bandon. I chose to stop at Devil’s Kitchen, which is part of the Bandon State Park “beach loop”.  It has a great overview of the coast and is just a short walk to the beach. It is also a bit farther south than the boardwalk area of Bandon, so it tends to be a bit quieter.


Even though it was already one o’clock by the time I had arrived in Bandon, there was still some heavy fog that clung to this rocky inlet. And while the southern coast of Oregon is notoriously “rugged”, I  was pleasantly surprised at the mammoth rocks and numerous tidal pools scattered along this portion of the beach.



If you plan on making a trip down to Bandon anytime soon, here’s a link for more info: Bandon State Park Info

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Misty Mountain Mornings Along the Coast

Shore Acres State Park is quickly becoming one of my favorite places to visit along the Oregon coast. From the sea lions to the botanical gardens, there is just so much to see in such a short distance. And the beaches…….well, they are fantastically secluded. 

After three days with temperatures in the upper 90’s in Eugene, I was doubly excited to be headed to the cool weather at the coast. I was surprised that when I reached the beach a heavy fog still lingered along the cliffs eventhough it was well into the afternoon. While it may have made it a bit difficult to see farther down the coast, it made for some great moody shots.

This beach, which is located at the very end of the park, has a twisting path that descends down to the beach itself. Once you make it down the path you must maneuver down some “stairs” cut out of the side of the cliff and make it across quite a few rocks. However, once you make it you will be rewarded with tidal pools, piles of driftwood, and the occasional marine animal.

Tips: wear some durable shoes here. Do not do what I did and decide to wear flip flops that act like a Bon Jovi album and become “slippery when wet” at first contact with moisture. The steep incline down to the beach, along with the piles of wood and rocks can make this beach a bit difficult to reach for some visitors.

Despite the slight difficulty with getting to the beach, I would still rate it a 7/10 for its beauty and diversity of the landscape. Be sure to check tidal charts because the shoreline can get a bit slim when the tide is in.

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Simpson Beach

Sometimes when you are taking random road trips along the Oregon coast you happen upon some tucked away beaches that you never knew existed. Simpson beach is definitely one of these places; so much so that I completely overlooked it on my first visit to Shore Acres park. But, on my second trip I decided to follow the arrow on the small wooden sign bearing its name. And, I’m sure glad I did!

One of my favorite things about this beach (besides its seclusion) is the amazing rock formations that surround you. In fact, you can walk out onto the water for quite a distance on these great slabs of sediment.

The crashing waves and streams that lead into the ocean aren’t half bad either.

Moral of the story: sometimes you’ve just got to follow the random signs you find on your journeys. They could lead to something awesome.

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Winter at the Beach

Venturing out to the coast is always a good idea in my opinion, and the fact that it’s mid-February doesn’t change my viewpoint on the matter. Last week I was fortunate enough to take a trip back out to Heceta Head; and even luckier to be graced with temps in the 70’s.

While I have visited this beach previously, this experience proved to be quite different with the tide being insanely high and the lack of other visitors to the beach.

Eventhough I wasn’t able to walk out amongst the large rock formations or see the tide pools, it was still a great visit. I can’t wait to make that typical Oregon drive through the wooded mountains to the rocky coast someday again soon!

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Seal Rock

Driving down the coast of Oregon from Newport, I came across this behemoth of a rock formation called Seal Rock. I’m not quite sure how I’ve managed to miss it in my previous trips down the coast, but here it is in all its rugged glory.  

 The terrain may be a bit rocky, but the view is fantastic and definitely worth a bit of climbing to see the ocean from this perspective.

Not to mention the beautiful cliffs and grasses surrounding the beach. 

 It was fairly late in the day when I stumbled across this place and the sun was already starting to set. Needless to say, I definitely want to go back and explore it in greater detail.

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30 Plus Us

On a recent visit to see my family for the holidays I made my obligatory trip to the Detroit Institute of Arts. In my nine years of living in eastern Michigan I grew to love this museum, so much so that I became a volunteer for a short while before I moved west. It was a great experience, one that I would recommend to anyone that is passionate about art and the importance of community involvement. Going back after being away for six months made the visit even more interesting; seeing all the changes that have recently been made (more about this in an upcoming post) and viewing some great new pieces that I haven’t seen before.

Their current special exhibit 30 Americans offers a perspective on “America” and its culture from thirty African American artists. Their work is often thought provoking and critical of the way our society chooses to portray race; which often results in broad generalizations and the diminishing of an individuals’ personal experiences. We like to categorize, divide, and organize history to fit a specific context. And in the end, it often ends up being repackaged to fit a commercial need. This is of course my interpretation of the show. And I’m sure each visitor will take away a different perspective on what this show means to them. I highly recommend you check out the DIA’s description of the show here.



Another aspect of the show that I appreciated is the DIA’s approach to bring each individual viewer’s perspectives together as a collaborative whole. This is achieved through a variety of methods, one technique being the more traditional method of having a comment wall at the end of the exhibition.


A newer approach allows for the visitor to record their experience digitally in a photo booth, which then projects the videos together on the screen hanging above. This technique, along with a great multi-media app of the exhibition that can be downloaded to help guide you through the show, totally had the art history lover in me geeking out. I’m always impressed when curators are able to bring the experience full circle; combining new means of communication on multiple platforms, with traditional presentation techniques that ultimately allows for more involvement on the visitor level. Hell, just the fact that they allowed photography in this special exhibit is a huge step. It once again differentiates this show as being different from the norm and increases the likelihood of individuals sharing their experience of the exhibit. This post being an obvious example that it works!


IMG_9747IMG_9750IMG_9756IMG_9752All in all, if you have the chance to visit this show before it ends on January 18th, do it. I believe it to be a fresh perspective on the relationship between art museums and the public. Oh, and the fact that there is some fantastic artwork by some amazing artists doesn’t hurt.


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