Photostock 2013 – the color photos

Here are a few shots from downtown Harbor Springs, Michigan.

Under the heading of “but is it ART?”

Art Gallery, Harbor Springs
Art Gallery, Harbor Springs

I couldn’t tell if it was out of business, not yet opened for the season, or in the process of opening for the first time, but it’s some kind of statement to have an art gallery with bare walls.

I loved the vintage feel of the gold leaf sign in the pharmacy window, and the riot of colors and designs on all the July 4th themed stuff in the window:

Pharmacy Window, Harbor Springs
Pharmacy Window, Harbor Springs

It also says something about a small town when the library is upstairs from a fudge shop:

Lbrary, Fudge Shop, Harbor Springs
Lbrary, Fudge Shop, Harbor Springs

I’ll leave it to you to decide what exactly it says.

Here is the famous “Legs Inn”. The Inn serves Polish cuisine in a highly rustic, pseudo-native-american decor setting. It gets its name from the fringe of old stove legs fringing the facade.

Legs Inn
Legs Inn

Commemorating the Native American presence in the area, the Legs Inn has this tipi construction outside in the parking lot.

Bark Tipi, Legs Inn
Bark Tipi, Legs Inn

Across the street is this very knotty door, with fake bear paw tracks in the concrete sidewalk.

Knotty Door, Legs Inn
Knotty Door, Legs Inn

I looked at the sidewalk and my first thought was “how cute – I want to keep the paw prints in the photo”. My second thought was, “what a pain in the ass that must be to shovel come wintertime – those are natural snow and ice traps!”.

Across the parking lot from the Legs Inn is this old cinderblock garage building, all closed up, but with this gigantic mural of a Muskie leaping for a fishing lure.

Muskie Mural, Garage, Legs Inn
Muskie Mural, Garage, Legs Inn

I just liked the texture of the garage wall, and wanted to do something with the geometric qualities of the door, window, and cinderblocks. I don’t normally like perspective-less flat planes, but this composition called out to me. I also liked the near-monochromatic nature of the scene – there are few hints other than the window shade that this is in fact a color photograph. Feedback on it welcomed.

Garage Office Door, Legs Inn
Garage Office Door, Legs Inn

On a bright and sunny day, I went down to the boat ramp in Cross Village, Michigan, to get the sunny day version of something I had previously attempted in heavy fog – a photo of just the lake and sky. I went out on the boat ramp to take the photo, so I could be sure to not have any land in the foreground. Coming back from the decking over the water, I looked down and saw this:

Boat Ramp, Cross Village
Boat Ramp, Cross Village

The waters of Lake Michigan. Yes, it really is that blue and clear. I tried this shot also on a foggy day, but the fog was so intense I ended up with detail-less gray over sorta-textured gray, which was very uninteresting. I’m thinking of doing a Sugimoto-esque re-working of this to blur out the details in both sky and water so it becomes a study in color fields.

Lake Michigan
Lake Michigan

I know, heresy- I converted this shot to black-and-white from a color negative. Had it been a sunny day, I think the color would have worked, because I would have had the contrast in the scene to bring out the abstract nature of the composition. But I had profound fog as my lighting, so the b/w conversion gets me closer to what I was seeing in my mind’s eye for this shot.

Beach, Lake Michigan
Beach, Lake Michigan

All shots taken with my Rolleiflex 2.8E, with the films being a mish-mash of Kodak Portra 160, Kodak Portra 400 (the really foggy day stuff) and Kodak Ektar 100.

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