Lonely Souls

I’ve traveled down some long and lonely roads.  Once in a while I consider just how far out of the way I am.  And, what would I do if I broke down or needed help.

On this particular day, the dog and I were rolling east in Montana.  We’d  left the Rocky Mountains behind and reached the prairie land of Eastern Montana.  It was a long, mostly straight road that went on for countless miles and hours it seemed.  Way up in the distance I saw what appeared to be civilization.  It was a building sitting atop of a small hill.  As I got closer I realized it was a church all by itself in the middle of miles and miles of undisturbed prairie.

The church was long ago abandoned.  But, I saw signs the cemetery was still in use.  It was on Native American Land and the grave markers had family names like Longknife and Soldier and given names like Laughing girl.

Happening upon this deserted holy ground as I did left me with a strange feeling.  I couldn’t help but wonder about all the lonely souls.

A brief update after returning from RoadTour 2018

I have yet to get caught up with all my to-do items upon returning home.  But, I’m making progress.  So much that I have been able to sit down and begin to review some of the images I captured while on the road.  I have a lot of them to evaluate before I decide if I will offer any for sale.

I do want to share this one though.  I was standing beside the White River in Washington State at Mount Rainier. It was 03:30 local time.  The Milky Way appeared to be rising up out of the ancient volcano which was back lit from the moon which had set not long before I arrived.

I enjoyed shooting this scene. It is especially enjoyable when I can park my motorhome (MOBI) right next to where I’m shooting and enjoy hot coffee while I work. 🙂

Yes!

I was holding my breath and hoping.  It has been years since I could see enough detail to spot wildlife.  Most of the time I didn’t realize I’d photographed an animal or insect or tiny plant until I loaded the images into the computer and looked at them on the screen.  

I was hoping that the result of my cataract surgery would allow me to see some of the things I’d been missing.  Today the puppy and I were out for a spin in the Kubota and I was just taking in the sights when I spied an owl sitting an opening in a hollow tree.  YES!!!!  I hurried home and grabbed a camera.  The tree was on the side of my road so I jumped in the car and drove back there.  He was still there, soaking up the afternoon sun.  I found a place close to park on my one lane road and while still sitting in the seat, turned and shot over my shoulder.  Not the best way to capture a shot.  I carefully tried to get out of the car without spooking him. Ding Ding Ding.  Oops I forgot to pull the key out of the ignition! Darn, he ducked out of sight.

Here is what I got.  The image with the owl is one shot (one full frame and the other cropped from the same image). the other is the empty hole.  I sat there for some time hoping he would return to his sunbathing.  Nope.  But, I know where he lives now.

The fantastic part is that I saw him as I was casually moving along.  Yep, I can see a lot more detail now.  I can only imagine what it will be like once the other eye is done.

I couldn’t have asked for a better birthday present.

 

Black and white images

I’m drawn to B&W images.  Perhaps its because I first shot B&W film.  Maybe it reminds me of countless images hanging in numerous galleries I’ve visited.  Sometimes it just brings back memories of a time when black and white images were what we were accustomed to.

Another time. Another place.

Gas blowing engines at the former Bethlehem Steel plant in Bethlehem, PA.

These generated electricity for the plant as well as high-pressure air for the blast furnaces. They were built in the 1890s and ran reliably, 24-hours a day 7 days a week, for 100 years. There are 12 engines, each one over 80 feet long, lined up in a row inside a 100′ x 540′ brick and steel building.

They were monstrous internal combustion engines that ran on waste gas (called “top gas”) from the blast furnaces. Each engine had two gas cylinders in tandem and an air cylinder (called an “air tub”) which fed into the cold blast mains to the furnaces.

There had been as many as 17 of these engines in a row. Suprisingly, they were not really all that noisy in operation. The sound created by the engines consisted of a repetitive “whooshing” sound caused by the operations of the intake and exhaust valves, plus a low background humming sound caused by the huge flywheels at the ends of the engines.

The main combustible component of blast furnace top gas was carbon monoxide. The huge size of these engines had to do with the fact that CO is not a terrific fuel, so a lot of it is required. The advantage of using it was simply that there was a lot of it available which, otherwise, would just be wasted.

The blowing engine operators could tell when there was a cooling water leak in one of the blast furnaces because it would add hydrogen to the top gas which would become apparent as a knocking sound in the engines. Thus, the blowing engine foreman could phone the blast furnace foreman to tell him there was a leak somewhere.

Once upon a time, The town of Bethlehem Pennsylvania echoed with the roar of blast furnaces, foundries and machinery of all sorts.  Once upon a time America led the world in steel production.  The steel mill has since been silenced and the town is just another small American town with an amazing history.

How to purchase

In the past, I have included a shopping cart to make purchasing my art simple.  Well, I’m here to tell you that nothing is simple about having a shopping cart if you have multiple choices for each image and want to include shipping and tax, etc.!

So, I’m going to try a different way this time.  Contact me!  We’ll discuss what you want, price, shipping , etc..  I’ll provide you with a way to pay me once we agree on your purchase.

As always, your feedback is welcome.

Paul

Welcome

Hi and welcome to my new and improved fine art photography website.  Once again I’m making an effort to show my work online.  I really hope that I can keep this site simple and show only quality images that are worthy of the term “fine art”.  Please tell me if you think I’m heading off in the wrong direction.  I have a tendency to get excited about fresh images and many times make the mistake of publishing them on my website.

Meanwhile, I have another website that I blog on when I’m on the road.  It’s there where these fresh, new images belong along with the stories behind them.  www.artontherun.info I am also in the process of redoing it.  When it is finished it will be a dot art domain rather than a dot info.

Cheers and thanks for stopping by.

Paul