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The Forest of Nisene Marks by chateaugrief The Forest of Nisene Marks by chateaugrief

Well the votes are in and I’m planning on just heading straight on down the list. First up: The Forest of Nisene Marks: better known as that one sinister place that killed 63 people, injured 3700, destroyed dozens of towns, and issued this little critique of 1950s freeway design:  Yup, in the heart of this idyllic woodland likes Loma Prieta, The Dark Hill, where no one knew there was a major earthquake fault until the middle of a SF Giants/Oakland A's World Series Game 3. It was October 17, 1989. It was a 6.9 on the Richter scale, and wikipedia says that it only lasted for 15 seconds, but Joe, who was in Hollister at the time, informs me that the super strong shaking there lasted for over a minute. Before the quake, there had been intense interest in forecasting earthquakes on the San Andreas fault, and the scientists missed this one, though they tried. (it occurred on a ‘previously undiscovered’ fault) Earthquake prediction still remains a very hotly studied, and elusively infuriating science, especially since vulcanologists have gotten their act together so well and are at the academic equivalent of winning 12-0 in the bottom of the 8th. The quake did have two recognized foreshocks though, enough that UC Santa Cruz had sent some instruments up to take more precise recordings on a known ‘dark spot’ on the San Andreas fault. There was even a death in one of the aftershocks, and Wiki’s writeup is one of the worst examples of passive voice in writing that I’ve seen in a while: “one man died when he exited a building through a window and fell five stories” no word whether the victim was one Mr. Wile E. Coyote.    

A couple of interesting phenomena occurred during the quake, 

Liquefaction - soil turned into quicksand. If you shake a jar with big pebbles and little pebbles and sand, things tend to start sorting themselves. A little bit of water in the soil turns into a big puddle of quicksand. Oakland and San Francisco have several areas of city that are built on rocks that were dumped in the bay. The jar was shook. Bad things happened. 

Sand Volcanoes - This is a little water driven geyser of sand that spurts up from the ground as soil is undergoing the liquefaction process. As all the little particles shake down and compact, the water is put under enormous pressure and spurts up and out of the ground, carrying the small particles with it and accelerating the process. Very cool. In SF, these ran so deep that they brought up debris from the 1906 earthquake.  

Landslides - These are pretty self explanatory. 4000 are estimated to have occurred in Nisene Marks Park during the quake. A big one entirely blocked Highway 17 from the Bay Area to Santa Cruz. Took weeks to clear and repair.  

Magnetic Disturbances & Infrasound - Before the earthquake, for 12 days straight, a magnetometer in Corralitos, only a few miles from the epicenter, recorded a substantial increase in super low frequency sound, far lower than even whales and elephants can hear.  This increased abruptly on the day of the quake, peaking at about 3 hours before the quake. Unfortunately for Team Seismologist, this neat little warning has not been repeatable in subsequent earthquake prediction studies and now the data is thought to be due to poor instrument calibration. 

Soft-Story Building Collapse - this is the exceedingly popular building design where there’s apartments/offices up top and shops and lots of glass and things down below instead of a shear wall. These are at a much higher risk of collapse. Not a great idea. Manhattan, think about it. Previously undiscovered fault. Hipster coffee shops. In the 1989 quake, 160,000 apartments were destroyed by this phenomenon.  

Aftershocks - There were 51 subsequent earthquakes with at least a 3.0 magnitude in the following 24 hours. This caused most everyone to not want to be inside. So everyone went camping. On the sidewalk. Including my mother-in-law. Her family coaxed her back inside after a few days.

Your Freeway Was Built By Idiots - Namely, an outfit that went by the name of Grove, Wilson, Shepard and Kruge Contractors, Address 400 Madison Ave. NY, NY, inactive since 1976. It was the only double-decker in California when it opened. In California, space considerations have usually never gotten in the way of a good 14 lane freeway. It was also built on rocks dumped into the bay silt.  This resulted in 42 of the 63 earthquake deaths, as you may imagine from the photographs. The earthquake happened during rush hour too, there were 165,000 cars on this freeway when the quake hit.  Here’s a human interest story to give the flavor of the event: 

Your Bay Bridge Is Like Little Baby - The San Francisco - Oakland Bay bridge has seen a lot of grief in its time. Sailors trying to fly planes. DWA Ships.   No Worries, It Just Scraped the Paint.  Dunno Why But It’s Broken Now.  See We Fixed It With Plan C Anyhow, this double decker bridge also broke during the earthquake, but did the hinge thing rather than the pancake thing. It also popped off a ton of super-important rivets, and we don’t make ‘em like that anymore. The bridge itself moved 7 inches in the quake.  SF and Oakland finally got around to finishing the retrofit in 2013, only 24 years later. I refuse to drive this bridge. There’s lots of perfectly good bridges. More scenic. Other ones.  

Oakland A’s Fans Eternally Disgruntled - To this day, the A’s guys are mad that they lost the 1989 world series, and contend that if only the earthquake hadn’t upset their concentration, the Giants wouldn’t have swept them 4-0. They will talk about this at length. Just bring it up and sit back. It’s better than watching a baseball game. The Giants are immune to earthquake distraction, apparently. One of their many superpowers. 

This week in Chateau Grief, Xander causes an earthquake too.  

Add a Comment:
 
:icontherealvenomy:
TheRealVenomy Featured By Owner Apr 14, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
I'd love to be there now... :-)
Reply
:iconnonier:
NonieR Featured By Owner Apr 6, 2018
GORGEOUS art, and a good reminder/memorial.

One typo, if you don't want us to be distractred: "Yup, in the heart of this idyllic woodland _likes_ Loma Prieta"
Reply
:iconravenheart1984:
RavenHeart1984 Featured By Owner Apr 5, 2018  Professional Traditional Artist
beautiful
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:iconhighdesertpencil:
HighDesertPencil Featured By Owner Apr 2, 2018  Professional Traditional Artist
I just love how you work with light!  I see this so often in the forest, but I don't think I could ever illustrate it.  You not only weave the high and low values, you also work with the illumination itself - but in a way that doesn't overpower.  It's just awesome!
Reply
:iconaqualumen:
aqualumen Featured By Owner Mar 17, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
I love trees. I'd like to walk through this forest but it's probably an unrealistic wish for me. Nice work.
Reply
:iconmermaid-kitty:
mermaid-kitty Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2018  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
What a masterful demonstration of grasp of light and shadow. Absolutely adore the lighting and contrast between lit and not-lit leaves. Really draws my eyes - thank you for sharing.
Reply
:icongeoluvisi:
geoluvisi Featured By Owner Feb 14, 2018   Photographer
Wonderful piece of graphic artwork!!!
Reply
:iconpedrortis:
pedrortis Featured By Owner Feb 11, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
Beatiful and very inspiring, this place must be beautiful!Great prince of the forest Tangerine Tree 
I love the detailed drawing!!w00t!  
Reply
:iconkabacalyaan:
kabacalyaan Featured By Owner Feb 6, 2018  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thanks for the llama - for it led me to discover your breathtaking landscape drawings! I had to fav several of them at once. My favourite is this one: I have a great passion for wood and forest scenery. It must be awfully hard, though, to compose good forest pictures. (I've never tried to draw or paint one myself but my feeble attempts with this subject in photography resulted practically always in failure.) I can't even put my finger on why I like this one so much - the composition, the slanting light, the rough bark of the tree trunks, the reflections on the pools of water from recent rain... All of these details in themselves are beautiful but it's the whole put together that makes it look so natural and real.
Reply
:iconpigeon-wine:
Pigeon-Wine Featured By Owner Jan 27, 2018  Hobbyist Writer
How do you make something like this??? Its astonishing.  I just started trying digital painting and i really want to get to this skill level!!
Reply
:iconlightasticdaniel:
LightasticDaniel Featured By Owner Jan 18, 2018  Student Artist
beautiful 
Reply
:icontarlanx:
tarlanx Featured By Owner Jan 14, 2018  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Lovely piece
Reply
:iconvera52:
Vera52 Featured By Owner Jan 13, 2018
A very nice work, I am just feeling the warm of the sun and fresh air after the rain....
Reply
:iconcalligraphowl:
CalligraphOwl Featured By Owner Jan 12, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
This painting feels very peaceful
Reply
:iconchateaugrief:
chateaugrief Featured By Owner Jan 13, 2018  Professional Digital Artist
Thanks!
Reply
:iconkassyalobirus:
KassyaLobirus Featured By Owner Jan 12, 2018
Awesome
Reply
:iconchateaugrief:
chateaugrief Featured By Owner Jan 13, 2018  Professional Digital Artist
Thanks!
Reply
:iconivladislaw:
Ivladislaw Featured By Owner Jan 12, 2018  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Nice work! 
Reply
:iconchateaugrief:
chateaugrief Featured By Owner Jan 13, 2018  Professional Digital Artist
Thanks!
Reply
:iconareallyweirdacademic:
Gorgeous! I love the lighting and the sharp lines. My dad and I have a tradition of hiking to the epicenter when I'm home. It's a lovely place despite the tragic nature of it. (Also love the history lessons that accompany your fabulous work! Well researched and fascinating.)
Reply
:iconchateaugrief:
chateaugrief Featured By Owner Jan 13, 2018  Professional Digital Artist
Thank you! I'd love to hike to the epicenter! (I haven't though)  In fact, any hike in Nisene Marks is worthwhile.  Beautiful beautiful area!  
Reply
:iconaceartisttara:
AceArtistTara Featured By Owner Jan 11, 2018  Student Traditional Artist
This is GORGEOUS! LOVE the lighting on this!!! 
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:iconchateaugrief:
chateaugrief Featured By Owner Jan 13, 2018  Professional Digital Artist
Thank you!  
Reply
:iconslowdog294:
slowdog294 Featured By Owner Jan 11, 2018  Professional Photographer
Excellent. :winner:
Reply
:iconchateaugrief:
chateaugrief Featured By Owner Jan 13, 2018  Professional Digital Artist
Thanks!
Reply
:iconslowdog294:
slowdog294 Featured By Owner Jan 13, 2018  Professional Photographer
Many welcomes. :D
Reply
:iconraian-kun:
Raian-Kun Featured By Owner Jan 11, 2018  Professional Digital Artist
awesome!
Reply
:iconchateaugrief:
chateaugrief Featured By Owner Jan 13, 2018  Professional Digital Artist
Thanks!
Reply
:iconraian-kun:
Raian-Kun Featured By Owner Jan 14, 2018  Professional Digital Artist
Your welcome! :D
Reply
:icongogomechy:
Gogomechy Featured By Owner Jan 11, 2018  Hobbyist Writer
This is beautiful work.  

Also, the link about the freeway collapse.  Wow.  
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:iconchateaugrief:
chateaugrief Featured By Owner Jan 13, 2018  Professional Digital Artist
Thank you!  Yes those getty photos of the collapsed freeway, fuel of nightmares!  
Reply
:iconmoccabun:
moccabun Featured By Owner Jan 11, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
Your artwork is just... wow! I especially love the lighting on this one! <3 
Reply
:iconchateaugrief:
chateaugrief Featured By Owner Jan 13, 2018  Professional Digital Artist
Thank you!  
Reply
:iconbrodkil6:
brodkil6 Featured By Owner Jan 11, 2018
After reading your commentary, I've come to the following conclusion:

You're a real smart@$$, aren't you?

... I approve :D (Big Grin) 
Reply
:iconchateaugrief:
chateaugrief Featured By Owner Jan 13, 2018  Professional Digital Artist
haha!  Monty Python - Upper-Class Twit Of The Year [icon]   
Reply
:iconannqueru:
Annqueru Featured By Owner Jan 11, 2018
Love this one! Especially the sky for some reason. :heart:
Reply
:iconchateaugrief:
chateaugrief Featured By Owner Jan 13, 2018  Professional Digital Artist
Thanks!
Reply
:iconfractalico:
Fractalico Featured By Owner Jan 11, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
Nice forest !
Reply
:iconchateaugrief:
chateaugrief Featured By Owner Jan 12, 2018  Professional Digital Artist
Thanks!
Reply
:iconzliva:
Zliva Featured By Owner Jan 11, 2018  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I like how sharp this painting looks.
Reply
:iconchateaugrief:
chateaugrief Featured By Owner Jan 12, 2018  Professional Digital Artist
Thank you!  
Reply
:iconarrog:
arrog Featured By Owner Jan 11, 2018
Lovely.
Reply
:iconchateaugrief:
chateaugrief Featured By Owner Jan 11, 2018  Professional Digital Artist
Thanks!
Reply
:iconhatarichan:
HatariChan Featured By Owner Jan 11, 2018  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Wow, very stunning. I love the details you always put in your art, very admirable! I also love the colors you used for your painting + The way the light shines through the crown of the tree! 

How do you paint those scenery/landscape paintings? I mean, do you first roughly sketch your idea or do you use colors right away? 
Anyways, keep the good work up! [free] miku icon pack 
Reply
:iconchateaugrief:
chateaugrief Featured By Owner Jan 11, 2018  Professional Digital Artist
Thank you!  I usually try to keep some selectable flats layers underneath things, but this one I failed at that... I usually go for color right away, but this one I did a rough grayscale first...then changed all the values....I don't know.  I'm always trying out new things and forgetting what layer I'm painting on... always experimenting!
Reply
:icontoosensitivepurr:
toosensitivepurr Featured By Owner Jan 11, 2018  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I always love your scenery pictures Heart 
Reply
:iconchateaugrief:
chateaugrief Featured By Owner Jan 11, 2018  Professional Digital Artist
Thank you!
Reply
:icongeneralecchi:
GeneralEcchi Featured By Owner Jan 11, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
Smell good for the morning walk
Reply
:iconchateaugrief:
chateaugrief Featured By Owner Jan 11, 2018  Professional Digital Artist
Mmmmm!  Yes!  I love that forest smell!
Reply
:icongeneralecchi:
GeneralEcchi Featured By Owner Jan 11, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
^^
Reply
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