Much of the time, I'm just taking pictures, as most camera people ought to "admit" (not that there's anything wrong with that). But there are other times when my picture making goes beyond "taking", and is based on an idea. Here's how it works with me- I am a very sentimental nostalgias, which tends to be the primary idea behind my photography. More specifically, I am nostalgic for the past industrial age that dominated North America right up until the early 1980's. This was a time when most people had jobs, were in high demand, paid well, able to retire well, and could live out their entire lives with a feeling of worth and accomplishment. This, of course was all based on "Industry" - the manufacture of hard goods that were built to last, and required not only the initial manufacture, but also a lot of job- creating servicing.
Sadly, this age has all but gone, and all that's left are crumbling ruins. Occasionally, in any town or city, there are remnants still standing that remind us, who experienced the very tail end of it, of perhaps our first job, or our trade-based education - things that our Gen-X children can only wonder about if they happen by these lonely remnants - "what was it for?" I take note of such locations, and if I don't have a camera on me, I try to get back at a later time to photograph what is becoming for me a small but growing body of work.
Crumbling factory ruins represent more than what they have become in themselves. They represent a crumbling, deserted way of living which we, of a certain age, took for granted. It says - there was a certainty, and now that it's died, nothing is certain. Sad and pessimistic, I know, but it's a North American reality. It's also my art. When I'm photographing old abandoned workplaces, I can visualize the outcome, and every element in my frame becomes significant. I photograph very thoughtfully and carefully. This is my story.
The above picture is a pair of old water tanks next to an abandoned Industrial Park. Interestingly enough, these are still in use, with a delapitated, though still working Diesel shed next to the tanks - check out the blue smoke from the roaring engine:
I also made a digital version of the same thing, just for comparison sake:
In both cases I was trying to emphasize the smoke from the running Diesel. I think the digital shot did slightly better this time, although it took a lot of post-processing to get it that way.
Here are a few more lonely shots of abandoned industry I've done recently, all with the EOS 650 and Fuji Superia 800 Film:
Think of these as "lonely landscapes", and if you once were a part of this way of life, be very thankful.