Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 1998/11/25

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Subject: [Leica] Roads, tractors, and a question of technique (long)
From: "Khoffberg" <>
Date: Wed, 25 Nov 1998 17:15:31 -0800

Near where I live the nice people who spend public money on roads are ten
years into a really gigantic project to re-engineer and rebuild a freeway
interchange.  At the present stage of progress (slow), we have what I
consider a photographers playground: roads and overpasses going in every
direction at every altitude.  Better still, there are considerable sections
still under construction.  On the weekends, it's possible to walk these
sections thus positioning yourself under and beside all these gigantic
structures that curve off in every direction.  Perhaps of equal interest is
all the paraphernalia that's left about: everything from scrapers, graders,
bulldozers, and loaders, to re-rod, scrap steel, debris, and on and on.

So the intrepid photographer is presented with all the elements I mentioned
above which can be shot to good effect in the morning (sun comes up through
the structures), any time during the day (you'll get interesting shadows and
shading any time), late in the day (wonderful side-lighting), and at night
(traffic going by as close as you care to get).  You also have the story
teller's opportunity because you're prowling a work site where nothing is
going on but where much does happen five days a week.

Like many of you, I have a choice of gear.  I have Leica M, Hasselblad, and
Canon EOS, all with a suitable range of lenses and appropriate filters.

So here are my questions.  They're rhetorical but hopefully worthwhile

1) What time of day would you go and shoot and why?
2) What would you shoot and why?  Would you just go for shape and line
(lovely chromatic skies to set it up)?  Would you go for juxtaposition to
tell a story?
3) What equipment would you use and why?  What wouldn't you use?

I've been several times and am probably going back again this weekend.  I've
shot at different times of the day with Leica M and H.  I would note in
passing that I found myself shooting differently in all regards depending on
what gear I was using.

I ask all of this for a simple reason.  It's clear to me after just the
short time I've been reading that this is a group of experienced shooters.
I'd love to hear more about how different people would approach a similar
situation - sort of like a workshop without being in the same city.

If this is beyond the scope of what people want to discuss, not a problem.
Just thought it might be a fun addition to the other threads.

I'd be happy to share what I wound up doing if folks are interested.  At
some point I'll figure out a way to scan and post some images and share them
as well.

Thanks to all for a great place to hang out in cyberspace.


Kevin Hoffberg