Saturday, January 16, 2010

Smog Lake City: Main Street

The other night I decided to strike out into the inversion and shoot some video around my office on Main St. The carcinogenic soup that fills up Salt Lake City may be shortening our lives, but it sure makes it beautiful. The video was an excuse to use Davey's Rebel T1i at night (I was interested to see how the high ISO exposure would look in HD). I was amazed at how the camera performed with a quick prime lens in the available light downtown.

The adventure quickly turned into more than just a clip show of the smog, I got interested in who was around at 9 o'clock on a Thursday evening. So, looking super surreptitious with giant headphones and a camera & tripod I snuck around getting shots of people in their nightly routine.

The best encounter was with the late night meter maid, who called in the tow truck to jack a car that had parked in one of the new ride share zones ("tell your friends not to park there" she warned me). We chatted for a bit about the negative image that comes with her job. "You're all just number plates to me!" she exclaimed, "hmm, you're not helping with that image problem" I replied. We chatted about the circle of the economy, life and death, and all things that are good. Then she left to go ticket more cars, and I sprinted off to find my car before she did.

The whole experience was far more enjoyable than I could have anticipated. Forcing yourself to focus on a small portion of the city gives you an almost palpable taste of the urban environment (especially when the air itself is palpably tasty!). I enjoyed being a passive observer, shrugging off the odd looks and belligerent stares with a feeling that I was in search of something important. I don't know if I found it, but I did find details I had previously overlooked, and I had a great time.

Music: 16 Megatons - Funki Porcini

1 comment:

  1. Just when I thought I wanted to move out of this place asap, you make this amazing video that reminds me of how much I love this town. I especially enjoyed your choice of soundtrack.