We don’t have a lot of heavy Industry out here in western New Jersey (none, actually…) so whenever an assignment takes me into more urban areas it’s always interesting to look for scenes like this, especially early in the morning, just before dawn.
I’ll get up early and drive around the industrial areas looking for something to shoot. The combination of the dark blue, predawn sky, mercury vapor lights and slight haze can make an ordinary scene look almost surreal. These were done with a hand held, mirrorless DSLR. They took a long exposure (about 1/2 second at ISO 200) so it was a little tricky not to be blurry. A passing bus creates some cool, light streaks.
Apart from the interesting light, predawn is a good time to be photographing surreptitiously. There are not many people around who might find a guy photographing from his car to be a little suspicious. Some day I’ll have to get permission to do this. Then I can use a tripod.
Long Term Ecological Research
It is always great to visit places where people are actively engaged in learning and generating data with no hidden agendas of any kind. It is all on the table. The purpose of research is to learn the truth, as clearly as possible, using sound, objective scientific methods.
Harvard Forest, is a 3,500 acre site in Petersham. Massachusetts with laboratories and classrooms, where since 1907 scientists and students “… have explored the ways biological, physical, and human systems interact to change our earth.” (harvardforest.fas.harvard.edu/)
During the summer it offers internships for undergraduates who work side by side with mentors conducting independent research focusing on the effects of natural and human disturbances on forest ecosystems. I had the opportunity for a brief tour of the labs and a chance to meet some of the students. Given the chance, I would spend the whole summer with these science students, following and photo documenting their research and activities.
Every two years the Hunterdon County Chamber of Commerce publishes “Hunterdon Living Magazine” (http://www.hunterdon-chamber.org/HunterdonLiving). It is a wonderful guide to the county and businesses. This year Chris Phelan, President of the Chamber, floated the idea of using New Jersey’s only remaining covered bridge, the Sergentsville Covered Bridge here in Hunterdon as the cover photo.
As nice as it is, even a “covered” bridge is just a bridge so we thought we should add some life to it and recruited a couple of volunteers. Aisling Carroll and Katie Metzler grabbed some bikes, donned pretty dresses and help create the photo.
Here is a little video of our shoot.
SERGENTSVILLE BRIDGE PHOTOSHOOT VIDEO
And the final photo. …