During my years as a commercial photographer, I have photographed some very interesting and unusual places.
I documented the progress of the "mole machine" that bored a massive tunnel under the City of Hartford, CT, burying the Park River. At the start of the project, when I reported to the work site, I was told to "go get in the bucket". The bucket was attached to a crane cable that lifted me and then slowly lowered me down a long shaft to the tunnel floor. Eventually an elevator was installed. My walk through the tunnel became longer and longer each month, as I documented the progress. The tunnel started along the Connecticut River near the Charter Oak Bridge and ended off of Park St. near Sigourney St. The Army Corps of Engineers managed the project that provided flood protection for the city.
Then there was the contract to photograph the construction of the super-max prison; called the Northern Correctional Institution in Somers, CT. I started by photographing an empty lot and each month I documented the progress. As I saw the "pods" taking shape, where prisoners spend 23 hours each day, the job began to make me feel uncomfortable, and I was glad when the project was completed.
On another assignment, I was asked to photograph in a drainage tunnel under the city of Hartford, CT for the Metropolitan District Commission, which is the local water and sewage authority. They were planning an information campaign, explaining a major upgrade project, to their customers. The photos from the first tunnel (above) that I photographed were rejected because the tunnel didn't look old enough. The next tunnel I photographed was under Franklin Avenue, over a hundred years old, and made of brick. The iron ladder rungs in the man hole had rotted off, so I had to wear a harness and be lowered down on a cable by a winch. I held a flash in my left hand as I photographed an inspector a few feet away. This shot was used as the cover of a brochure.
I could go on about the times I had to photograph from the roofs of skyscrapers, despite my fear of heights, but I'll save that for another post. Meanwhile, I welcome unusual assignments. I am ready to go; with my own hard hat, steel toed boots, and dayglo safety vest !
Creative Images Photography
901 Main Street
Manchester, CT 06040