Browse Blog Posts

A selection of posts, sorted into categories: Natural World, Environmental Issues, Art and Writing, and Historical/Cultural.


The Natural World

Mutant Octopus, Mythical Sea-Serpents, and Puget Sound Marine Mammals…My first blog post! Here, I reveal some things about imagination and observation of the natural world in West Seattle’s Lincoln Park on Puget Sound.

Angry Spiders, Animal Minds, and a Slime Mold called Harry…What goes on in the minds of animals?

Old growth forests…from seedlings to giants…Every tree in a Pacific Northwest old growth forest has a story to tell. Inspirational musings and watercolor paintings by Denise Dahn.

If a rainbow falls in the forest…and no one is there to see it, does it have any color? Pondering the science and art of color perception.

Moon Madness…A chorus of nocturnal creatures made me think about wolves and people.

Eat prey, Love…Can we make a place for wildness?

Forest Bath…  Take a forest bath and wash away all your cares and anxieties.

Primordial Valentine…   A 2-minute video celebrating the love life of ferns. It rocks.

Happy Holidays… a different kind of Christmas Tree for you, nature-girl style.

Christmas Cranes…Sandhill Cranes are overwintering in Nebraska. Is this climate change?

Mother Trees…     Do plants communicate? Some scientists believe they do, in their own way. 

Nature’s Chaos… Sometimes, a little chaos is just what you need.

Happy New Year!  Celebrate the old, cherish the new…the same goes for old-growth forests.

Not all those who wander are lost…  a few words about why I started my blog.

Hawgs, Toads, and Lunkers… if you’re a bass fisherman, you know what I mean.

Interpreting Tragedy…  How do you tell the story of tragic death in an interpretive project?

Animal Love  Have you ever wondered if animals feel love?

Jelly Delight…What do you think of when you look at a jellyfish?

Cosmic Sightseeing 1…When you have Andromeda, who needs fairies? Musings about the night sky.

Cosmic Sightseeing 2…Falling up.

Cosmic Sightseeing 3…This week…test your knowledge about the known Universe.

Cosmic Sightseeing 4…Time, Life, and the History of the Universe in One Easy Bar Graph.

Cosmic Sightseeing 5…Another installment in the series of cosmic explorations.

Cosmic Sightseeing 6…Time, Life and the Universe in a to-scale timeline.

Like Water for Martians…Water-shaped landscape on Earth and on Mars


Environmental Issues

Rivers Are Us…Rivers connect us to nature, history, the environment, politics and the economy. What is a wild, free-flowing river worth?

Is Weedy the new Wild? What have we learned about invasive species? Will it be necessary to shift our attitudes toward invasive species as we move further into global climate change?

Stopping the Ape…A West Seattle neighborhood fights high-impact use of park forest natural area and it raises questions about nature deficit disorder and the future of nature.

Your View is Ruining My Trees…Can Seattle have views and still keep its trees?

The Urban Wild-ish…Everyone needs a daily dose of nature. In urban spaces, wildishness should be a priority.

Ziplines Unzipped…Exposing the underside of ziplines. Is there a secretive plan underway at your local nature area?

Common Ground…  Can’t we all just get along? For the sake of the environment, we really need to make it work.

Watchable Wildlife and Interpreting Biodiversity... In a healthy habitat, nature tends to fill in the gaps with life. When you visit, it’s best to step lightly.

Why We Need Monuments, National and Otherwise… Nature needs a promotion. What about Local Natural Monuments?

Puget Sound… Our inland sea needs help.



Art and Writing

Three Seats of Stone…Musing on plein air painting in the Pacific Northwest.

Thoughts on Being an Artist…A message to aspiring artists.

Adventures in Storytelling…Writing illustrated young-adult fiction and pondering the magic of reading.

The Art of Seeing…I’m probably biased, but I think the world’s more interesting when seen through artistic eyes.

Graphic Designer in the Alaskan Wild…  A Dahn Design, LLC true adventure


Historical, Cultural

The Illustrated Story of Pieter Claesen Wyckoff… the based-on-history story of my great great great great great great great great great grandfather, one of the earliest settlers in colonial New York.

Clarissa Colman Homestead at May Creek…A remarkable series of personal diaries by pioneer Clarissa Coleman tell the story of early life along the shore of Lake Washington.