Gallery Gate

City-sanctioned canoe and kayak excursions along a placid, 3-mile stretch of the Los Angeles River in the San Fernando Valley’s Sepulveda Basin are expected to start in July. The three-hour journeys will be offered on weekends at a cost of $50 per person. Participants will be chaperoned by a Los Angeles Conservation Corps naturalist. The goals of the pilot program include raising awareness of the river and its history. The images in the gallery above were taken in 2010 shortly after the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency designated the river a “traditional navigable waterway.” George Wolfe and Joe Linton walk their vessels through the shallows as they head down the L.A. River during a recent trip after the river's waters were declared a traditional navigable waterway. Joe Linton paddles through a picturesque section of the L.A. River which is more often associated with concrete than lush greenery. Kayakers make their way down the L.A. River near Atwater Village.

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view Kayaking down the Los Angeles River as presented by: Los Angeles Times


After having fun with nesting house finches on my front door, a neighbor who enjoyed that saga Email'ed me about a hummingbird nest at a nearby golf course. I have some old pictures of colorado hummingbirds, but had never seen a nest. It's amazing how well camouflaged it is - would have never seen it if it hadn't been pointed out to me - thanks Brian! Be sure to scroll down as the pictures get better ... and check out the Hi-Def videos at the bottom.

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view Baby Hummingbird Nest as presented by: Alek Komarnitsky


Beneath its design is the engineering of what is arguably the most complicated high-rise to be built in the U.S. Calculated to sway during powerful Santa Anas and absorb ground movement during severe earthquakes, it is wedded aesthetically and technically to the unique footprint of the region. Geologist Rosalind Munro of AMEC, a geotechnical consulting firm, at the Wilshire Grand tower construction site in downtown L.A. Before construction started, Munro went down a borehole eight stories deep to verify the stability of the building site. Construction workers guide a jumping wall form system into place as it is lowered into position by a crane into the core of the Wilshire Grand tower. Remote-controlled booms are used to place concrete with accuracy as workers pour the foundation for the New Wilshire Grand tower.

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view The Grand plan: Building the Wilshire Grand tower as presented by: Los Angeles Times



This month has been the deadliest month yet for foreign troops in Afghanistan. The U.S. Department of Defense now reports that one hundred coalition troops were killed this month. The death toll for 2010 to date now stands at 320. With soldiers and equipment still arriving in the country, peak troop strength is anticipated to reach 150,000 by August. And, with the removal of General Stanley McChrystal from command of Afghanistan following an embarrassing article in Rolling Stone magazine, a shift in leadership is underway with General David Petraeus attending confirmation hearings now. Efforts are now being made ot both weaken the Taliban and pressure them to reconcile with the Afghan government, but progress is slow, and many earlier gains are becoming unstable once more. Collected here are images of the country and conflict over the past month, part of an ongoing monthly series on Afghanistan. Two-year-old Faith Marie Adams reaches for one of the U.S. flags from her father, Army Spc. Christian M. Adams' coffin, during military honors ceremonies at the Main Post Chapel on Fort Huachuca, Arizona on Tuesday, June, 22, 2010. Christian Adams, stationed at Fort Hood, Texas, died in Afghanistan on June 11. A member of a US Army Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) team stands at the entrance to a container wearing a bomb disposal suit prior to an exercise at Camp Nathan Smith in Kandahar City. Sgt. David Guthrie of Grimes, Iowa serving with the U.S. Army's 1-17 Cavalry smiles as he reads a letter that had just arrived from his family at Strongpoint Tarnak on June 14, 2010 in rural Dand District, just south of Kandahar, Afghanistan.

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view Afghanistan, June, 2010 as presented by: Boston Big Picture


Black-clad demonstrators broke off from a crowd of peaceful protesters at the global economic summit in Toronto Saturday, torching police cruisers and smashing windows with baseball bats and hammers. Police arrested more than 150 people. Police used shields, clubs, tear gas and pepper spray to push back the rogue protesters who tried to head south toward the security fence surrounding the perimeter of the Group of 20 summit site. Some demonstrators hurled bottles at police. "We have never seen that level of wanton criminality and vandalism and destruction on our streets," Toronto police chief Bill Blair said. The roving band wearing black balaclavas shattered shop windows for blocks, including at police headquarters, then shed some of their black clothes, revealing other garments, and continued to rampage through downtown Toronto. Protesters torched at least three police cruisers in different parts of the city, including one in the heart of the city's financial district. One protester jumped on the roof of one before dropping a Molotov cocktail into the smashed windshield.

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view Vandals Mar Summit Protests In Toronto as presented by: Sacramento Bee


A photography technique that frequently catches my eye is the use of silhouette - placing a subject directly between a primary light source and the camera. The effect can be painterly or haunting or evocative. It can break a subject down to basic ideas conveyed only by line and shape, where an individual might appear iconic. Collected here are a handful of recent photographs from around the world, where we can only see the outlines of the subject, our minds (and the captions) are left to fill in any details in the darkness. Australian freestyle motocross rider Robbie Maddison jumps during an training session in the Sahara desert near the Giza pyramids as the sun sets in Cairo May 11, 2010 in preparation of the second stage of the Red Bull X-Fighters World Tour. Volunteers release flamingo chicks at the Fuente de Piedra natural reserve, near Malaga, in southern Spain August 7, 2010. Around 600 flamingos are ringed and measured before being placed in the lagoon, one of the largest colonies of flamingos in Europe, according to authorities of the natural reserve. South African kids play soccer in open field as sun sets in Soweto, South Africa.

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view In Silhouette as presented by: Boston Big Picture


Pakistan, home to 170 million people, is a country riddled with conflict. Terrorist groups attack the government, civilians, and other perceived enemies, while NATO forces carry out drone attacks on the country's border with war-torn Afghanistan. Pakistan's leaders walk a tightrope, maintaining good relations with the West and taking billions of dollars in foreign aid even as they try to please vocal, sometimes violent, anti-Western groups. In the midst of this turmoil, life carries on, and the vast majority of residents spend their energy focusing on daily needs and tasks. Collected here are some recent scenes from across the country of Pakistan. Pakistani laborers selling flower petals wait for customers at a flower market in Lahore on May 12, 2011. A Pakistani boy carries wood on his head, walking toward a slum during sunset on the outskirts of Islamabad, Pakistan, on Monday, January 31, 2011. A man burns computer scrap in order to retrieve metal from it that will be used to make soldering wire in a makeshift workshop in Karachi

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view Scenes From Pakistan as presented by: The Atlantic


James Lee's simple plan fell apart in the winter of 2007. The former Marine, who served two tours of duty in Iraq, had moved to rural Independence near Bishop, Calif. Lee was trying to control his wanderlust by living the simple life of a construction worker. His plan dissolved when he happened on a magazine article written by mountain climber turned war correspondent, Ed Darak. "I was never going to stay in Independence long enough to enjoy a simple life," Lee said, "I accepted this fact while reading [the article]." He was 37 years old. "I sold my house and purchased my first camera." Lee said. By January, he was back in Iraq. This time, instead of carrying a gun, the veteran of the Battle of Fallujah was carrying a camera and a notebook. Lee had always gravitated toward Afghanistan. Early in 2010, he embedded with the Afghan Security Forces. He traveled to four provinces in four months. Instead of covering the American mission in Afghanistan as most photojournalists were doing, Lee said he wanted to cover the Afghan people. "If I can't tell the story from the perspective of the Afghans, I don't want to tell the story," he said. And just as he chose a non-traditional path for covering the war in Afghanistan, Lee has also avoided the traditional path to documentary photography. Lee has no formal training in photojournalism. By choice, he remains disconnected from the professional photography world so his images won't look like traditional documentary photography. "It's not about the technique of the camera, it's about the story you're telling," Lee said.

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view James Lee in Afghanistan as presented by: Sacramento Bee



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