Friday, February 22, 2013

TGIF: Spending Time


Overcast and silent morning here at the World headquarters of Today's Image. With a mix of rain, snow and sleet, along with freezing temperatures, not much in the outside world is moving. Fine time to be inside with Scout along with the warmth of a wood fire. Good time to relax and reflect.

As a good friend once advised me: "It all comes down to how you want to spent time". Been thinking off and on about that this week.

Several folks have contacted me and asked why are you traveling around in order to photograph a bunch of old, and for the most part unused buildings? What is it about showing all these "run down parts" of towns/communities/cities? Can't you photograph a few newer and occupied locations?

Good questions. No easy answers. Will offer a few responses.

First a back story. Growing up often heard the phrase: "There's a right way, a wrong way, and the Navy way to do things". The correct way was always the right way - nothing else would do.

Early on - under the guidance of a grandfather - careful craft was expected. Whether you were cutting grass, washing dishes, working with metal/wood or playing sports, attention to detail was expected and demanded.

These lessons have been carried over to photography. Whatever the subject, images should exhibit a controlled technique. No surprises. This implies a sequence of steps have been considered and carefully followed. This is called pre-visualization. Before releasing the the shutter, the final result is fixed in your mind - careful craft.


The old adage - your job is not to photograph the "beautiful," but rather make "beautiful" photographs - is always foremost in my mind. Yes, could go to glorious locations, such as national parks, and return with fine images. Been there and done that. Studied with a master -Ansel Adams - and learned the necessary skills.


I still go to glorious locations, not national parks but places with names like Elwood, Centerville and Rushville. Quiet places which, for me, have an understated beauty. Towns, communities and cities, while undergoing changing times, that are interesting and beautiful.

 While the images depict old and for the most part unused buildings, I am attracted to the craft required to construct these structures. Brickwork done the right way and attention to detail are truly first rate. These buildings illustrate how workers carefully spent their time.

 "It all comes down to how you want to spent time."  


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