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At Random


I love creating photography projects. Not only do they create a coherent body of work, but ultimately, they give my work a purpose. I love figuring out what to shoot next. How am I going to shoot it? When am I going to shoot it? Black and white or color? What film will work best? What camera am I’m going to use? What lens? Medium format or 35mm? How many photos? This may seem like a lot of work before the shot, but it’s a labor of love. This is the main reason I fell in love with shooting film. I love the tactical experience. This process slows me down. I’m more engaged. Of course the same preparation can be done with my DSLR, but there is a little more care put into the shot when I can’t immediately see the image and I only have 15, 24 or 36 shots on a roll. Even though I love shooting with a purpose on purpose, I enjoy shooting at random almost just as much.

I currently have four film cameras, two slr cameras, one medium format camera and a Kodak 35. The Kodak 35 was just purchased and I have yet to test it. That is actually another project I am trying to figure out. It’s loaded with film, but I need to figure out my game plan. Typically I use one of my slr cameras for street photography. My medium format camera is usually dedicated to a particular project. This leaves my remaining slr. This slr is usually loaded with a color film which I use to shoot at random. I may shoot a particular theme with this camera, but in between those themes, I may see something that catches my eye.

The shots in this post were spread out over several weeks. These are the shots in between the themes I’m currently posting from my latest roll of Ektar 100. As you will see, there is no rhyme or reason behind these shots. With the exception of the first shot, these photos were taken while taking a drive on familiar and unfamiliar roads. It’s fun discovering what’s over the hill or around the bend. Even the familiar roads always offer something different. The lighting, weather, people, landscape changes and cityscape changes are just a few variables that make change a constant.

This first shot is a picture of my youngest son wearing his All-Star baseball jersey. This was his first baseball jersey with the coveted little league baseball patch on the sleeve. He was so proud of this jersey. My wife kept it washed because he wore it all the time. I believe he slept in it a few times. Dad was proud, too! We did not fair well during the All-Star season, but it was a great experience for my son. He loves baseball and as long as he loves it, we will continue to support him.


Olympus OM1 / 50mm f1.8 / Kodak Ektar 100 / The FINDLab


I am always taking a mental note of potential subjects when I’m out and about. Maybe the lighting is not right or maybe the subject is obscured in someway. The sun’s position and how it relates to my subject is usually the main factor on determining when I will attempt the shot. I’ve passed the mural in this next picture numerous times. I determined that I would shoot this building on a clear early morning because the face of the building faced East and the parking lot would be void of vehicles.


Dickson, Tennessee – Olympus OM1 / 50mm f1.8 / Kodak Ektar 100 / The FINDLab


I may revisit the mural on a hazy or partly cloudy day to capture the building under more even lighting conditions. Another downtown area I love shooting is the square in Columbia. The early morning light falling on the storefront caught my attention as I was driving by.


On the Square in Columbia, Tennessee – Olympus OM1 / 50mm f1.8 / Kodak Ektar 100 / The FINDLab


After shooting the above shot, I turned around and saw Old Glory glowing in the sunlight.


On the Square in Columbia, Tennessee – Olympus OM1 / 50mm f1.8 / Kodak Ektar 100 / The FINDLab


Of all places to carry your camera, would you believe I always make sure I have my camera when I take my trash to the landfill? Frankly, I have at least one camera with me at all times. I have learn that the dump can provide some unique photo opportunities. At our landfill, not everything is trash. It might be something that someone just wants to get rid of. These items are usually in good working condition. They just need a new home. Those items are placed on top of the trash compactor for patrons to view as they throw away their trash. I’ve taken a few pictures of things I found interesting over the years. Below are a couple of my recent shots from the trash compactor. Remember these?


Olympus OM1 / 50mm f1.8 / Kodak Ektar 100 / The FINDLab


I thought it fitting to be taking a picture of analog music with my analog camera. This next picture was actually not for the taking. The coffee mug belong to one of the operators. As I eyed the cup of joe, I heard someone say, “Don’t take my mug”. I assured him I just wanted the picture. I know those old guys must think I’m crazy for taking photos of junk and a coffee mug.


Olympus OM1 / 50mm f1.8 / Kodak Ektar 100 / The FINDLab


This next shot is a famous landmark in the city of Franklin. I was passing through town one clear sunny morning and stopped to capture the water tank against blue sky.


The Factory – Franklin, Tennessee – Olympus OM1 / 50mm f1.8 / Kodak Ektar 100 / The FINDLab


When I have the time, I love driving around the Hampshire area. The landscape in this area is made up of hills and valleys. There’s a lot of greenery including several vineyards. I call this area ‘Wine Country’. The well known winery, Amber Falls Winery and Cellars, is located there. The landscape and vineyards remind me of the rolling hills and vineyards of Italy which I had the privilege of visiting back in 2000. This next shot is a picture of the windmill at the entrance of the Amber Fall’s winery. There wasn’t really a good landscape shot to take that day, so I settled on the windmill.


Amber Falls Winery and Cellars – Hampshire, Tennessee – Olympus OM1 / 50mm f1.8 / Kodak Ektar 100 / The FINDLab


Below are three pictures I took a few years ago on Kodak Portra 400. These are my favorite pictures of the vineyard at Amber Falls.


Amber Falls and Winery – Hampshire, Tennessee – Olympus OM1 / 28mm f3.5 / Kodak Portra 400 / Film Box Lab


Amber Falls and Winery – Hampshire, Tennessee – Olympus OM1 / 28mm f3.5 / Kodak Portra 400 / Film Box Lab


Amber Falls and Winery – Hampshire, Tennessee – Olympus OM1 / 50mm f1.8 / Kodak Portra 400 / Film Box Lab


You can see the original post with the above three photos in my blog post titled Country Life. There are more random shots in that post, all shot with Portra 400. Getting back to my roll of Ektar, my final shot was taken a few miles further West of Amber Falls. I turned onto an unfamiliar road to check out the scenery. After about a mile of driving down this road, I came across a pretty elaborate campaign display. I could not pass this up.


Hampshire, Tennessee – Olympus OM1 / 50mm f1.8 / Kodak Ektar 100 / The FINDLab


Love him or hate him, one thing is for sure. President Donald Trump has electrified the nation and maybe the world. Due to time constraints, I headed back home after this shot. When I get more time, I am going to explore this area a bit more. I hope you enjoyed the images. Up next, I will be posting the last batch of pictures from this roll which will showcase some landscapes. Thanks for reading!


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This entry was posted in 35mm, Architecture & Structures, Film, Landscapes, Still Life, Urban Exploration and tagged , , , , , , .


  1. Avatar
    usathroughoureyes February 22, 2017 at 14:57 #

    Great photos!!! You are not alone with taking your camera everywhere, lol. You just never know when everything comes together and that perfect moment occurs. We’ve experienced it and are sure you have also.

    • Travis
      Travis February 22, 2017 at 15:06 #

      Absolutely! I feel naked without my camera! Thanks for the comment!!

  2. Avatar
    usathroughoureyes February 22, 2017 at 15:12 #

    LOL. Please don’t be naked, lol

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