Ever wonder what it would be like to swim with jellyfish? Travel and adventure photographer Kien Lam fulfilled this fantasy by flying across the globe to Jellyfish Lake in Micronesia. Anyone who has been stung by a jellyfish can attest—it’s not a pleasant experience. But Jellyfish Lake in Palau is filled with millions of jellyfish that have evolved in a way that makes it safe for humans to swim in the same waters.
Kayaking instructor and boatbuilder Brian Schulz embarked on an ambitious construction project that took him about a year and a half to complete. The end result is a beautiful home in the woods that cost only $11,000! Inspired by Japanese architecture, the Japanese Forest House (as Schulz aptly refers to it) includes both a rustic western and traditional eastern appeal.
Located in the woods of Cape Falcon, Oregon, the home offers all the basic amenities one would expect from a living space. What separates it from other homes is the architect’s design choices (given its location), the structure’s sustainability, and the locally sourced materials that went into its construction.
It all began one day when Schulz found a brass sink at a local recycle center and immediately started fantasizing about building a home around the object. He wound up fulfilling his dream on an affordable budget by carefully salvaging materials for construction and items to adorn the house. He also did a fair bit of traveling and meeting people who offered anything from handmade paper lanterns to allowing him to actually haul trees from their property.
Schulz says, “With deep enough pockets a person might be able to duplicate such a structure by writing a large check to a talented builder, but that would risk missing the point entirely… Whether or not one believes that turning a log from beside the house into the house itself imbues it with some mystical qualities, it is undeniable that the pursuit of local materials connects more deeply to your landscapes, your neighbors, and yourself. The simple act of searching adds richness to our lives. To reiterate: You meet people, you discover new places, you have adventures, you learn things, AND, you come home with beams, windows, doors, and shingles.”