Long before there was Photoshop to alter reality, I had an East Coast magazine editor call a dramatic colorful sky a Zimmerman sky. It became a joke around their office, and when they assigned a project they asked for one of my trademark skies. It’s not me; they just couldn’t believe what we experience as a matter of course here in the Wasatch.
I had one of those magical afternoons recently in Promontory when I photographed a recently completed home by Upland Development (Ryan and Jessica Taylor), a detail-oriented custom homebuilder constructing both in the Wasatch Front and Back. The trees had just leafed, the grasses were vibrantly green from the rains, the home’s natural materials and easy lines fit perfectly into the setting and the sky was without alteration as you see it.
I hear more and more about conscientious right-sizing for vacation homes, where the use of space and flow are carefully considered so that all the area of the home is all well used. Interestingly enough, this is a full-time primary residence for a family with three young children in a planned mountain recreation development who applied the same principles of right-sizing.
The open floor plan has space for sitting by the fireplace and watching television, a pushed out conversation nook with views to Park City, a dining area that layers into the kitchen, and connections to outdoor living that are so basic to the mountain lifestyle. A low cabinet directs the hallway flow out of the dining area while providing more storage. The custom brass shelving suggests separation, but allows for light and a view to the brickwork by the stairway. (Architecture by Landforms Design)
The kitchen is designed for efficiency. The homeowner, a serious home cook, worked closely with Ryan Taylor on innovations like the cutting board island with a small sink and a disposal. Where the ceiling treatment changes to wood on the right is a doorless pantry. Conveniently located behind the white cabinets enclosing appliances (with two televisions), it is out of sight but makes for easy access.
Another interesting ceiling detail is in the master bedroom. Floor-to-ceiling glass captures the views. The sliding barn-style door is one of a pair that connects the bath.
The bricks seen on the main floor continue downstairs with a wide wooden tread stairway that seems to float. I particularly liked the brick, which was new but finished to look reclaimed.
The family area had another innovation worth pointing out. While many home theaters are often closed off with doors, in this case the top-mounted sliding doors can close off a children’s play area with its own television for movies from the main family area with TV. The kids stay close to the rest of the family. This room has another great ceiling.
The main powder room was showy with textures and shimmer. The homeowner worked with Upland on material selections.
Finally, the outside entry has transparency with a glass front door, but what called to me was this glimpse to the side of a sitting room in front of the guest suite with a black and white print of Steve McQueen casually sitting on a sofa with a large gun. It grabbed my attention.
As far as my photos, when conditions were as perfect as they were last week, for the photos I just appreciate what’s there and make the photos. Another ideal summer day and sky. We live in a great place.
Want more Zimmerman Skies? You can browse all of his iconic shots here.