So naturally the one time I needed a perfect photo of the public library (above), which used to be Farmers Bank of Mathews, there were several cars parked out front. And all of a sudden I noticed all the telephone poles and wires. Great big, ugly utility wires. This was not good.
Feeling a little frustrated but not yet defeated, I walked around the corner for a shot of Southwind (below), which at one time was a general store. The lighting was perfect! But once again a car was in the way just enough to muck up my picture.
|I might still use this one, but, hello? Wish the car weren't there.|
All this time, whenever I contemplated the necessary tasks for the book (gathering old photographs, taking photos of the exact same scenes, and writing a paragraph for each pair of pictures--all 80 pairs), I always assumed that taking the current photographs was going to be the easiest part of the job. I take pictures around here all the time, it's a snap! To me the hard part was all the rest.
What I'm discovering--less than a week before my cover photographs are due and about two months before the entire book is due--is how much I underestimated the difficulty of taking a decent "now" shot of various buildings in the courthouse, thanks mostly to my need to take these pictures when there are no cars or pedestrians around.
(Oh, and also? There's heavy construction going on at Hyco Corner and Ward's Corner making any "now" photos at those locations unsightly. One scene requires me to take a shot of the sanitation plant; the "then" shot, before the plant, is priceless so I have to use that photo. Is there any way to take a good picture of a sanitation plant? Also, did you know that there is no proper angle for a good shot of Hardees which is where a very cute and very photogenic Texaco station once stood? Honestly the courthouse area was far more charming back in the 1930s and '40s than it is today.)
This sudden realization caused a wave of panic to sweep over me, and beads of sweat formed on my forehead even though it was slightly chilly this particular day.
(A similar wave of panic caused me to bolt upright in bed the other night at exactly 2:00 a.m. Hormones may be playing some role in all this sweating and all, but the book related stress isn't helping matters one bit.)
A couple of shots must be taken from the middle of the road to match the angle of the old photographs which shouldn't be a big deal early in the morning or on Sunday.
Except it actually is, at least when I've made such attempts.
The shot below is awful, plain and simple. I will need to go back when the light is better and there are no cars coming at me.
So, after spending about an hour wandering around taking terrible pictures, I
|I'm pretty sure my seventh grader could take a better shot. More utility wires anyone?|
...and drove directly to Aaron's Beach, where absolutely no work was done on The Book Which Will Never Be Completed.
|Ah. Now all is right with the world.|
p.s. I went back last night after 7:00 p.m. and had better luck, but still, this is going to be a very long, very difficult couple of months.