Last Third of SunRay Kelley Day on Blog

Last month SunRay wanted me to come see his latest creation up near Fort Bragg (Mendocino coast), but I couldn’t get away.

SunRay is not easy to get ahold of. He doesn’t exactly have a smartphone that’s on all the time. But once in a while he’ll call. This call a week ago was fading in and out, but he was describing the “Waterfall House,” just completed, and I caught snatches of what he was saying:

“It’s got a living foundation. It’s grounded into the earth…it ascends to the heavens. The living walls are clay and straw and they breathe. It’s got a living roof…mushrooms and flowers and moss…It’s 6-sided, there’s a timber frame…cut trees in a fairy ring…”

   The phone disconnected…

   Anyone else saying stuff like and I’d be thinking, yeah, right…But SunRay is the real thing. He’s a true nature spirit. His buildings are poetry. Hey New York Times, do a story on SunRay Kelley!

Photo inside Waterfall House by Camille Nordgren

Other photos of Waterfall House:

About Lloyd Kahn

Lloyd Kahn started building his own home in the early '60s and went on to publish books showing homeowners how they could build their own homes with their own hands. He got his start in publishing by working as the shelter editor of the Whole Earth Catalog with Stewart Brand in the late '60s. He has since authored six highly-graphic books on homemade building, all of which are interrelated. The books, "The Shelter Library Of Building Books," include Shelter, Shelter II (1978), Home Work (2004), Builders of the Pacific Coast (2008), Tiny Homes (2012), and Tiny Homes on the Move (2014). Lloyd operates from Northern California studio built of recycled lumber, set in the midst of a vegetable garden, and hooked into the world via five Mac computers. You can check out videos (one with over 450,000 views) on Lloyd by doing a search on YouTube:

2 Responses to Last Third of SunRay Kelley Day on Blog

  1. What a beautiful creation! This Sun Ray building has a little Lloyd House in it – the windows, the light in the space. At least that's my gut. Question for every one – I live in New England – A harsher climate then No Cal. Would these building techniques work in my geography? I'm curious if the amount of glazing for example would be a concern. Also flat roofs in a tough climate.

  2. SunRay has built at least one building in New York State (at Peaceweavers Community Farm, p. 73, Builders of the Pacific Coast). I would think you'd have to adjust the amount and type of glazing according to climate.

Leave a Reply