Boarded-up doorway with mailbox.
On the streets.
Graphic warehouse windows and floor.
On the waterfront.
Yellow, orange & blue ruled the day. And bricks – before and after they get painted white. I really like the ice machine's weathered vinyl letters, they look like cracked pieces of ice.
I'm trying to pull back and take photographs of broader scenes, as in the mill shot and the cityscape. In both examples, the negative shape of the sky is just as important to me as the buildings. I like how one half of the cityscape is dominated by the strong verticals of the columns, water tower and obelisk – while the other half is humble and workaday. Despite their emptiness, I find many of the small towns I visit to be strangely appealing.
Lots of colour today. I'm starting to think I have some kind of obsession with aluminum siding. I like the repetitive nature of the lines, especially when multiple widths and directions are in one image – as seen in the transport truck and butter-coloured building. That photograph is loaded with line patterns, including the grid of the cage.
I was hesitant to post the image of the SUV until I noticed the correlation between the colours of the vehicle and the colours of the buildings. They share a white, black, silver and red palette – one shiny and new, the other faded and distressed. I like when these added surprises emerge in a photograph. The image of Winnie the Pooh flying a plane through a pile of garbage holds no such surprises. WYSIWYG.
Today I enjoyed a short but pleasant drive through Quachita National Forest – it reminded me of the Adirondacks Mountains. What a nice change after spending so many days in flat topography. The weather reports are warning of thunderstorms and possible tornados for tomorrow. I should have known that the sunny days couldn't last forever.
Throughout my explorations of the cities and towns of Oklahoma I've encountered some very handsome architecture – examples of art deco, mid century modern and prairie school. Unfortunately most, if not all, are vacant. Their glory days have come and gone. Even though I'm clearly attracted to the desolation of these downtowns, I would have enjoyed seeing them at their best – when the hotels were full, the boulevards were busy and the local movie theatre's marquee lit up the night.
Plenty of variety today, including a row of plastic-wrapped cotton bales ready for shipping. I had no idea that cotton grew in this part of the USA. I did a double take as I drove by all of the ice machines outside the red and white striped building. Thankfully, the two guys working on a nearby truck paid no attention to me. Typically I don't photograph automobiles, but this one was hard to overlook – especially considering that backdrop.
Even a sign welcoming motorists to Oklahoma has a fantastic patina. You can see hints of the blue paint that once filled the letters and the border. It's my first time visiting Kansas and several of the farms I passed reminded me of the opening scenes of the movie The Wizard of Oz. Speaking of which, many towns have old movie theatres – most of which are either abandoned or repurposed. I keep searching for just the right one to photograph.
Cool temperatures and a bright sun allowed me to shoot a large number of black and white images today. The conditions allow the details to hold up well – as seen in the fine lines of the railway signals and the hydro tower. Once again a collection of colourful buildings presented themselves along the way. Loved coming across the deer monument in the middle of the main street of, where else – White Deer, Texas.
It was a cold, overcast morning and the sun finally started to peak through in the early afternoon. The patchwork of surfaces, textures and tones found in the top photograph divide up the image in such unexpected ways. It is so satisfying to find these existing compositions. And that unforgiving Texan sun – it creates wonderful subtleties of colour.