Here’s the front of a historic house in Old Salem, North Carolina.
Now, here’s an image of the rear of that same house.
Had I not wandered around back I would never have known that the rear entrance to the house was at a much lower elevation compared to the front and had a very nice set of stairs going up. Since that entrance was “street-side” it was in fact perhaps the main entryway.
I suppose out of 100 photos I might make on a given day, less than 10% are what I’d judge as being above average…for me at least. This is one of those which I was very happy with, but I did not know that until I had opened it up on my computer to begin digital processing. What’s that you say…you “process” digital images? Yes I do. Just as I did back when I was developing film in the darkroom, I took an original “negative” as captured on film by the camera lens, and then adjusted the exposure and so forth to have it look like I remembered the original scene. It’s much easier to do this today digitally, but the process is essentially the same.
In this scene with horses relaxing and feeding, in the center of a beautiful farm in North Carolina, with dark clouds on the horizon, everything was “just right.” Once inna while this happens…and then I am happy.
Nothing special here…just two images I made recently. The first one is an original cobble-stone street in Danville, Virginia…unused today. The other is…well…just a brick wall with some shadows left by the bush in front. One of the best parts of digital photography is that you can “shoot away” whenever your eye spots something of interest…whether or not anyone else besides you is in fact “interested.”
Once, many cities and towns in America had numerous small barber shops located all over. The red, white and blue spiral sign outside was beautiful when lit up and rotating at night. Inside, one could meet friends, gossip, read magazines, take a nap and lots of other things while waiting to have the friendly barber go snip-snip…hopefully keeping one’s sideburns level. This one is obviously closed in Danville, Virginia…but I thought it would make for a nice recollection of our history.
In the past, brick style buildings with rather high walls between floors, were constructed using long steel rods to add strength to the walls, by securing each end of the rod with “star-shaped” devices as seen here. I have always looked for one of them laying about so I might make it my own, but I have never been lucky that way. So, I let my camera do the taking.
What caught my eye here, other than the nice contrasting colors and patterns, is the way the two doors are situated. What happened, for example, when one walked out the one on top? Just kidding, I am sure there was once a platform present. This old building is located in the historic Tobacco District in Danville, Virginia. Tobacco was once “king” in Danville and surrounding areas…today it’s a presence seen only in decaying warehouses, log-crib curing barns, and faded signs. Other than the nostalgia involved, seeing the demise of tobacco is not a bad thing. Just my opinion.
An iconic newspaper in Danville is the Register Bee. Today it has a circulation around 15,000. Years ago, it operated in a large multi-story building in the center of town and I captured a bit of that building here. I liked the way I could frame the engraved title at the top of the building with a pink-colored portion of a building behind…with a small bit of blue sky also showing. The building today is empty, with the offices of the newspaper having moved elsewhere. Progress? I think not.
The courthouse in downtown Danville, Virginia is not that different in design from what you’d see elsewhere. So, what I did was to position myself in various locations in front, looking up the steps to the main doors. The fact that one of the doors was made of brightly polished brass, and the railing up the steps was similar in nature, gave me some contrasty colors in the photo composition. My first capture (above) is different from my second and third below. Point being to “move around” when making photos and get away from the standard “tourist-type” composition. Try to create interest in what you make.
These two photos are examples of scenes I have an opportunity to see whenever I want, so long as I get into my Toyota and drive a short distance into the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia or North Carolina. These locations are often destinations for one of my photo “road trips.” I hardly ever plan such trips out, other than to select a direction in which to drive…usually north, south or west. I’ll often be driving along a narrow road and for no reason other than I can, take a side road off to somewhere with sights unknown. When I find photo treasures for my camera lens to savor, I make a mental note to perhaps return during a different season so as to be able to experience it all again with a new look. Anyone who knows me well will wonder if I could go anywhere “unplanned.” For all my life I have always planned out just about everything I did…often to excess, worrying about what might go wrong to delay or impede my progress. Now that I am older and perhaps wiser, I tend to “go with the flow” so to speak. My rewards in that regard seem much better than they were when I was younger.
Sitting side-by-side in a rack outside a general store in Floyd Virginia were a few colorfully painted leaf rakes. Why these were on display outside in the middle of January, on a blustery cold day, I have no idea…other than to provide me with a nice photo.