Tuesday, May 9, 2017


By mid-year in 1976 I had given up trying to capture or create a single image on film to symbolize our bicentennial.  It just seemed impossible to create an image that was not trite or cliche—like bursting fireworks or some such thing.

So, towards the end of the year—I think it was November—I was out doing some photography in an orchard in Santa Clara (California) during the “magic hour” when I spotted this old barn about 75 yards away.  Even at that distance I could see the light was perfect for whatever was on this outside wall.  As I moved closer I was amazed to see this marvelously detailed slice of Americana…
Film: 35mm Ektachrome, High Speed, Daylight
I love the textures and details brought out by the strong side light from the setting sun—my style to this day!  And those details….the real feather duster and the rusted scissors and chains. And when was that old scale (made from wood!) made? Of course my 1976 theme was made complete when the owners tacked-up the 1976 US Bicentennial calendar over the previous year’s calendar.

All I did when I copied the original slide was crop some off two sides because the slide was damaged. Once in Photoshop I did a single image tone map (dark) to enhance the already warm detail and then I brought the whites UP to make the 1976 calendar stand out.

I must say that without our current digital capabilities and the editing powers of Photoshop this image would never have been seen by the public. A perfect blend of old and new.

’til next week…

Author: Jerry W. Venz, PPA Master Photographer, Craftsman
Training site:  http://www.LightAtTheEdge.com
Client site: http://www.TheStorytellersUsa.com

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