Wall of Drawers


Wall of Drawers

This is a continuation of my series of photos taken in Grammy’s basement (1, 2).

This big set of drawers is the thing I most remember about the basement. Each drawer is labeled with its contents (many are simply pencil on white stickers so they’re hard to see here) and many are more obscure than you might expect. Screws, bolts, hinges, ball bearings, roller bearings, grease fittings, springs — the list goes on and on.

The basement was very dark, and this photo is mostly lit by flash. It was difficult to find a spot to position the camera as well as the flashes. The camera is set on the hot water heater, with two pipes on either side of the lens (one of the only spots to fit it where I could include all of the drawers). I tried blasting the light into the ceiling, but there just wasn’t enough power to softly illuminate the scene. So, there’s a flash at the bottom of camera left (-2 EV) lighting most of the drawers and casting a big shadow upwards, and there’s another flash off at the top of camera left to help brighten the upper-left quadrant a little (-3 EV).

I don’t like the harsh shadows cast by the flash. If I had a better diffusion option I would certainly have used it. However, I recognize now that the shadow is an important element to the photo and memory: whenever I was down in the basement, with the work lights turned on, they cast some heavy shadows on these drawers. So, I think the way to make this phot better isn’t with diffuse light; it’s to hang the flash from higher to cast the shadows downward just as the old work lights would have.

See the original on Flickr.

Share Your Thoughts ( Comments Already)

Older Comments (1)

Dan & Sherree & Patrick currently uses Facebook for comments. Older comments are still here for readers, though. Read old comments »

Dan, you were a wee one the last time I saw you. Probably around Patricks age. Your dad gave me the website and I had to comment on the great pictures. This one of the drawers baffles me though, because for the life of me I can't remember them being in the basement. Was this something your granpa Lloyd put up? The last time I was in that basement had to have been around 1968 or 1969. Again, love the pictures, my favorite is the one your Grammy Betty has of the white owl and the blue sky background. Cuz Debbie

« Close old comments