•COMING IN SEPTEMBER, 2015•

Brass Valley: The Fall of an American Industry

by Emery Roth

Friday, July 3, 2009

Lighthouse Polarities, Peggy's Point Lighthouse No.3


PHOTOGRAPHER'S JOURNAL: I'm very curious how viewers of TODAY'S feel about this image.

This shot was an afterthought. It was the last image I made before hiking back up the rocks to the car. I hadn't thought about the reflecting pool since earlier in the evening; from a standing position the lighthouse reflection was invisible. After finishing the previous image I thought quickly about checking to see if the beacon was still visible in the darkened pool. The light was fading fast, the path to my car uncertain, and getting my eye low enough to see the reflection had long ago ceased to be fun, but my tripod was already truncated. I fought with my gear to get the shot positioned. I recall thinking, shoot broad to permit serious cropping later. I made only one image and then rushed off furiously without checking the exposure. I didn't really believe it was worth caring about. Surprisingly, although underexposed, it was recoverable.

I'm still not sure about the shot. It lacks the vigilant calm of yesterday's image. At the Lunenburg workshop I dismissed it from consideration quickly, but each time I see it I find it both arresting, mysterious and paradoxical, an unpleasant clashing of dark forms against the stillness of the lighthouse polarities.