Full Circle

One summer in my early 20s, I went to the Holland Tunnel in mid-town Manhattan, stuck out my thumb, and hitchhiked to San Francisco. I had been working as an assistant to a very successful advertising photographer. The work was very demanding and the photographer could be very abusive, but I promised myself if I stayed with him for a year, I’d give myself this trip.

I made it to Denver in a few days and took a bus to Boulder where I fell in love — in love with some crazy woman, but more so, in love with Boulder and the Rocky Mountains.
My first day there, I ran into someone I went to college with and she invited me to stay at her house. She and her boyfriend took me backpacking and camping on the Arapahoe Glacier Trail outside of Nederland. I’ve never forgotten that trip.

I finally made it to San Francisco, Berkeley and Ashland, Oregon before returning to New York. My plans were to sell everything, buy a van and move to Boulder. In order to afford a van, I needed to make money, so I found work as a freelance photographer’s assistant. What I learned in my one year of hell with that great photographer served me well and I got plenty of work.

And of course, I got back into New York City and commercial photography again, opened my own studio and never moved to Colorado.

Now after living in Marin County, California for over 20 years, and being unemployed for the last year, I’ve been hired by a company in Westminster, Colorado, which is about 10 miles southeast of Boulder.

I hope to move there in March. I love where we currently live and it’s very sad to leave California but I can’t wait to be back in the Rockies once more.

This above photo is of Redwoods in my local watershed. I’ve loved standing under those trees.


~ by danbaumbach on February 3, 2010.

11 Responses to “Full Circle”

  1. Hey, all the best to you, Dan. I’ve enjoyed reading your blog and seeing your photos. The ones you had (still have?) at the Kabuki were excellent. It was cool to walk in there and say, “Hey, wait a minute. I know this guy’s work!” You’re going to be leaving here at such a beautiful time of the year, but then again, you’ll be arriving in time for spring in your new home.

  2. What a great story! How adventurous you are 🙂 Congrats on the new job, and while it is sad to say goodbye to lovely California, it sounds like you will be living in a wonderfully beautiful place. All the best!

  3. Life is just so strange, you just never know how things will turn out.
    Here’s hoping this full circle is a happy trip for you.

  4. That is an interesting life story, Dan. I hope it works out for the best. It will be quite a change I can imagine.

  5. Hello Dan.

    Yes, it often takes time for the circles to sum up.
    And, what we dearly wish for often comes true,
    in one way or the other, if we have worked for it in the past.
    Looking back at my own life, there are so many circles,
    that I believe is a result of consistently following ones path.
    And, regarding the path; I believe it has always been there no matter what I what I have worked for.

    Congrats, Dan!
    Full circle!

    Best Wishes
    Seung Kye

  6. Beautiful photo Dan. Good luck in your new job. I believe that life guides us where we are suppose to be and even though it’s sad to leave the place you lived in for so many years, you are moving to another beautiful place and sounds like a new adventure. How fun is that 🙂

  7. Dan, your life’s work photographing around Marin is the stuff that ends up in art history books. You’re a true original. Can’t wait to see the Colorado Rockies and grasslands through your eyes.


  8. Dan, a sincere congratulations. I have no doubt that your images of the Rockies will be original and inspiring…Wishing you the very best in this next step.

  9. Congrats on finding work, Dan! I look forward to seeing your view in CO. Welcome back to your dream.

  10. Dan, I lived in Wyoming and Utah for several years and totally fell in love with the Wasatch and Teton ranges. I often think what my life would be like had I stayed there. I always enjoy running into you up at Lagunitas, and I’m sorry you are leaving. Your work is superb, and I’m sure you will make fabulous images in Colorado.

  11. Thank you everyone for your support and good wishes.

    – Dan

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