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© Betsy Kimak. All Rights Reserved.


Whenever I venture to Denver International Airport, I am taken aback by its striking white roof made of woven fiberglass that was designed to resemble Colorado's snow-capped mountains. Besides appreciating it as an architectural marvel, what I particularly enjoy is how the roof's arches contrast against the blue sky, which can be seen in triangular windows along the walls.

The roof is airy, oceanic, sensuous, and certainly something that I'm sure many passengers don't expect to see upon their first visit to the airport. Its translucency fills the atrium with soft, glare-free natural light that seems to immediately calm me after the long drive, inviting me to linger and relax. Rather than evoking thoughts of the state's fourteeners, I find myself instead envisioning that I have boarded a large ship with billowy white sails, preparing to embark on some great adventure.

While daydreaming at the airport one day about my imaginary nautical voyage, I noticed the patterns of the roof where it meets the supporting posts, and snapped a photo. Five floodlights are attached to the top of the post and four white cable rods hang from two black holes, presented like stamen of a flower. Seams in the flat oval section radiate from a metal mesh screen like a sunburst, surrounded by more wispy lines where the fabric curves away from the post like petals.

I gave the photo a gentle cyan tint, just to soften the grey shadows. Sometimes at first glance, the image almost looks like some kind of sea creature or microbe -- something organic attached to the ship's sails, riding along for the journey.

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