Alleys & Ruins no. 79, Tunnel (2005, Detroit, MI, 2:15am)
Phil and I have been exploring some of Detroit’s ruins. We find a tunnel where years of unchecked grime has settled into a thick cake on all the steel beams; where garbage runs the length of the tunnel floor; and where an ethereal light is beckoning me.
We’ve been exploring in and around the tunnel for an hour and no car has come by (side note: there's an irony to detroit, the Motor City. With millions of cars having been manufactured there over the years, the poverty level is so low, that there seem to be very few cars on the roads), so I decide to set up my tripod in the middle of the street, where the light and composition is best, and I click the shutter for the 20 minute exposure. I also decide to add some blue light with my flash, walking the tunnel’s length and firing my flash almost 20 times. I return to the camera and wait out the few remaining minutes. Suddenly a car’s headlights appear at the opposite end of the tunnel (visible in the photograph). I quickly close the camera’s shutter, pick up the tripod and camera and run to the side of the tunnel to get it out of the way of the on-coming car. Then I hear the car’s engine roar as the driver floors it, followed by blue and red flashing lights. It’s a cop. The car comes to a skidding halt and the two doors swing open. Two flashlights are now on us, and they have their other hands on their guns.
“DON’T MOVE!” We freeze. “What are you two doing in here?”
“I’m an artist,” I say. “I’m taking a picture.”
“A PICTURE!!” one of the cops growls, not believing me. “OF WHAT??”
“I take pictures at night. I know it sounds strange, but this is what I do.”
“You stay right there!,” he says.
Nervously, he steps away from the safety of his car door and approaches. The other cop still has his hand on his gun and is glaring at us.
“Whado we have here?” he says flipping open my various camera and lighting bags with his heavy maglite. He looks through my equipment and sees I’m telling the truth. Both cops start to relax. One cop looks at me shaking his head, “Hey I love art,” he says. “Just be careful out here. It ain’t safe.” They give us a long look, like they wanna say something but they don’t know what, and then they get back inside their cruiser and leave.
I set up the tripod again. I’m not sure I got the shot, and I don’t want to walk away with nothing. Ten minutes later another car appears and I have to race my camera to safety, ruining the shot. It’s a cop car again. The car drives by slowly, with the two officers staring curiously at us, but they don’t stop. I try again, putting the tripod on the same mark, reframing and releasing the shutter. Again, minutes later another cop car, two different officers drive by. I set up again, and one more time, two different cops, this time an unmarked car. Apparently word has gotten out that two lunatics are taking pictures in a dark and dirty tunnel in a not-so-good part of town, and the cops just wanna see this bizarre scene for themselves. This last drive by is the end of my patience and I decide to have faith in my first exposure. Phil and I leave; me, with fingers crossed that I have the shot!
ALL SHIPPING IS FREE
Our unique and vibrant photographs will add depth and stunning color to any home, office or public space. They are offered in two main finishes
1. Metal float mount
Our Metal prints have a magical luminescence. Their vibrant, saturated colors jump off the wall, and will last for generations. They are created by infusing dyes directly into specially coated aluminum sheets making them incredibly durable and scratch resistant. The finished piece is float mounted, so they float one inch off the wall.
2. Archival prints
We print on premium quality Sunset eSatin paper, using archival Ultrachrome inks for incredible endurance and color saturation. These prints will last for generations.
11x14 and 16x20 sizes are available with or without a window mat. If you are unsure which is best for you, feel free to contact us. Most clients seem to purchase without the window mat.
Prints larger than 16X20 are available as full-frame prints, without a white border or a window mat. If you want a white border, just let us know!
If you have a specific size requirement, that's no problem! Maybe the perfect size is somewhere between two of the sizes in the drop down list. In that case, the price would be the proportional difference. We’ve also stretched and cropped pieces for customers to fit precise spaces. Give us the dimensions and we'll email you image options for you to choose from. There is no charge for the extra labor in custom sizing pieces.
Metal prints in the following sizes include a Certificate of Authenticity, which will be mailed to you:
48X65 or 48X72: edition of 15
43X57 or 40X60: edition of 25
32X40 or 30X45: edition of 50
24X30 or 22X33: edition of 100
16X20 or 16X24: edition of 200
We want you to be happy with your art purchase. If a piece arrives damaged or defective, please contact us and a replacement will be shipped. All of my finished pieces are created using the highest quality archival processes. They come with a lifetime guarantee against fading or color shift.