Kelley King Photography

Commercial & Fine Art Photography

Cactus Photo of the Week

Cactus Photo of the Week


Two giant saguaro cactus growing together in the desert setting.
One of my favorites, these two saguaro cactus are growing side by side in this Sonoran Desert near Phoenix, AZ. I call this photo “Loving Couple” because it instantly reminds me of an inseparable couple (people) in a relationship.

Saguaro cactus is native to the Sonoran Desert area of the southwestern United States. This desert covers much of Arizona, small part of California and a large area in Mexico. It only grows in the Sonoran Desert but not all of the desert. Elevation is key due to possible freezing temperatures. Generally it grows in elevations of zero feet up to 4000 feet.

The life span of a saguaro can be as much as 200 years. The adult saguaro is about 125 years old. And a saguaro may take 50 to 100 years to grow arms. It will produce reproductive flowers around 35 years and continue to produce flowers throughout it’s life.

These two have probably been together at least 50 years, never bickering, just enjoying the peaceful surroundings. There neighbors consist of an ocotillo on the left side of the photo, some red barrels in the distance and other saguaros too.



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Ugly is Beautiful

Ugly is Beautiful, or is it?
I am a commercial photographer, mostly in the commercial architectural field. In my photographs I’m constantly retouching out things the client doesn’t want to see. This could be just about anything that makes their property look unappealing. Telephone wires, signage, cars, dirty blacktop are the most common fixes. Because of this, I tend to say, “removing the ugly in reality is my specialty”. That is all good in the commercial world, but in the fine art world, maybe not all ugly is undesirable. Old, decrepit, aging and deteriorating are interesting effects on subjects for photography. Many times this can make something that was a plain and boring subject, much more interesting. On my first visit to Alcatraz Penitentiary I was intrigued by some of the aging buildings. It’s a bit difficult to photograph with all of the visitors. And really, I’m sure there are some fantastic subjects you don’t get to see. I’d really like to get a behind the scenes look. I could probably photograph all day long, with a free access pass.

The decaying walls inside Alcatraz Penitentiary.  The beauty in rustic details.
This is in the main kitchen and dining area of the former prison. The penitentiary closed in 1963 and became a national recreation area in 1972. Over the years the surrounding salt water and lack of maintenance has created this decrepit, decaying subject, shown here. There is a little photoshop work to help with the window exposures and a little color enhancement, to bring the photo to what I saw when I was there.

This image and many other San Francisco photographs are available here

Rustic Details Collection here

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