Friday, December 17, 2010

Here at the oasis

Got dino juice?
Port Huron, MI

Photo below shot from the now-departed wondervan
January 2010, Wyoming, ON

I've loved this photo from the moment I took it for a couple of key reasons:
  • I've always had a thing for pool-of-light-type pictures. Gas stations, normally written off as architectural blights on an already-blighted suburban landscape, seem to take on an ethereal tone after dark. The lighting serves as a temporary, welcoming respite from the numbing monotony of the road. I often stop and drink in the sight before we head back into the murk.
  • This was our last stop before we crossed the border and drove into the teeth of one of the fiercest winter storms we've ever witnessed. We barely made it into our driveway, while others lucky enough to have not slid into a ditch or a snowbank pulled off the road and stayed in motels or in the homes of Good Samaritans. It was one of those white-knuckle experiences that we'll all remember for a good long time.
  • Earlier this week, the scene repeated itself in this same region just to the west of our hometown. Squalls sweeping in off of Lake Huron obliterated the landscape, trapped hundreds of people in their cars for days at a stretch and touched off a military rescue operation from the big base in Trenton, Ontario that involved a C-130 Hercules and a bunch of helicopters. Pictures like this remind me how quickly things can change in this part of the world, and how deeply we need to respect the elements.
So to some folks it's just a picture of a gas station. But to me, it's the kind of image that, despite the overt cold of the frozen pavement and wisps of snow, makes me feel warm inside.

Your turn: As you can tell, this is one of my favorite photos of the year. Do you have any faves of your own? Click here to see what the fuss is all about.


Alexia said...

I love this photo. The colours are great, the feeling eerie and, as you say, ethereal.

that guy said...

both of these shots are great...there is a an eerie feeling in both of them...almost foreboding...

bruce johnson jadip
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laurak/ForestWalkArt :) said...

i love the first one especially! the low lights...flickering the ground in spots...the darkness surrounding...((reminding me of some eerie stephen king story...)

very always! :)

21 Wits said...

This is for sure a stunning Gas Station photo...but for me the best is yes the light highlighting some of my most favorite colors! You can just feel the darkness almost softening the scene around these might pumps!

Pat Tillett said...

I agree! I love that photograph (and wish I'd taken it!) It looks lonely to me.
That kind of extreme weather is kind of scary to me. Of course, I live in the land of palm trees and no winter at all...

Anonymous said...

this has a curious feel to it.
very quiet and cold, yet inviting.

Mike Wood said...

You occasionally say that you have a lot to learn about photography, but this shot reminded me of the iconic shot by George Tice: 'Petit Mobil Station' - at the bottom of this post .

Carole Barkett said...

Great composition and atmosphere

Glennis said...

Wow, this photo is great. Haunting. The colors in it seem almost surreal.

I'm going to try to do a favorite photo each day. I've done two so far. Here's my link: