Some friends with more photographic interests recently banded together for a road trip to Dorothy Alberta. The internet claims that Dorothy is a ghost town, but rest assured, there is still some stranglers still living in the coulée. Still, the knit of photographers drove the two hours out of Calgary, timing their arrival to the sunset.
The town itself barely stretches a kilometer, and wraps the highway leading to Drumheller. A bridge older than most of the photographers stood watch over the alternate entrance, and provided an interesting subject to warm up the cameras. The carfuls of shutterbugs moved past the bridge towards the church as the sun was setting.
Reflections and sweeping sunsets filled the lenses of all cameras in attendance. The photographers moving between the two buildings on the church site, looking for unique angles and interesting shadows to capture. As the sky continued to darken, and warmth of the day slipped away, the group moved towards an old abandoned elevator on the edge of the highway.
Worries of crazy farmers and shotguns kept the clique from wandering over the barbed wire fence. Still, many images were captured all around the structure. The cold kept creeping in, and the light continued to fall to where the photographers crossed over the edge of interested hobbyists, into the realm of batty nerds.
From the back of one of the vehicles, a generator was produced. Set up on the side of the highway, drowning out quite conversation, the electric workhorse powered two large 1600Ws strobes. Traffic was not impeded, although not a vehicle passed that did not slow to a crawl to see what in the world the group of 5 was doing on the side of the road.
They were taking pictures of the grain elevator at dusk of course! Many blinding flashes ripped up the night sky to illuminate the structure. Happiness overwhelmed some of the participants; the power they controlled was simply too much to believe. It is too bad it took them until this point to realize that they wanted to take their best lighting assets outdoors. After exhausting the elevator's modelling abilities, just under half of the group succumbed to the cold, while the remainder stayed steadfast to continuing with the light-the-darkness experiment.
Shivering from the cold, those that were determined to endure through the cold moved back to the bridge, and once again established a studio in the open air. This time, however, they were not happy enough to be on the side of the road; they established their nomadic lights up on the highway itself. At this point not only the cold was their enemy, but lack of light as well. The darkness consumed the group; which in their haste had forgotten to pack a single flashlight or headlamp.
Under an amazingly starry night, the three photographers managed to capture some interesting photos. The cold pushing then to haste; it didn't take long for the ideal shot to land on the sensor. Jubilant, they vowed to 'do it more often', and 'again real soon' before they started their voyage back to home.