Photography day 19 is done!

Yesterday I spent the day with a local Roswell Historian named Michael Hitt.  He has authored multiple publications and drawn many maps that show historic elements with modern roads together.  He has mapped out all the Civil War entrenchments and earthworks in the Roswell area and many of the works all along the Chattahoochee River.  Many of these sites are difficult to find on your own, so Mr. Hitt offered to give me a tour of the locations.  We covered all the major spots involving the Civil War and the Chattahoochee River from the area of Island Ford Park all the way down stream to a spot near I-20.  He has done some excellent work and I recommend reading some of his publications.  Many of them are for sale at Bulloch Hall in Roswell.  I can not really say enough about the incredible job he has done of mapping out the actions along the river in Roswell and Vinings as well as Johnston’s River Line.  Please visit his site at

Photography Days 16, 17, and 18 are done!

     Last Friday was my 16th day of Photography for the War Was Here project.  I started the morning at Pigeon Hill and hiked to the top of Little Kennesaw Mountain.  Here I photographed Ft. McBride.  Not only did I use my regular digital camera, but I actually shot some real film.  I used my pinhole camera that takes 120 film and I shot in a 6 by 9 format.  The images should be really cool.  Got a lot of comments on the camera too and had to explain what it was and how it worked to some people that had never seen one. 
     Yesterday, I went back out to Kennesaw Mountain and since it was the 150th anniversary of the Battle of Kolb’s Farm, I made images of that area.  Not much of the battlefield is left.  The Kolb house is still there and is the only period home on park service property.  They use it as a residence for a park employee.  From here I photographed the Cheatham Hill area, both from the Federal lines and from the Confederate lines.  I then went to the 24 Gun Battery that was part of the Union line. 
     Today I took the boys with me back to the mountain and we went to the top to make images and enjoy the view.  After that we went to the visitor center to the museum to cool off and have a snack.  From there we went to photograph some of the historic homes that were used by different Generals as headquarters and are still standing today.  Some are well kept, others are unoccupied and are in need of preservation and repair.  The one that Union General Schofield used, was in the middle of an apartment complex for senior citizens.  They had a small community garden in front of it.  Over all, the boys and I had a good time today and I was able to make some good images.
     Days 19 and 20 will come this Friday and Saturday while I am out at Kennesaw Mountain for the 150th event.  It should be really interesting.  There will be lots of living history presentations and of course artillery demonstrations.  Hope to see some of you there.  If you are coming out there, you should bring a lunch because they do not have any food vendors set up.  They will only be selling drinks and packaged snacks.

Photography days 13, 14, and 15 are done.

Over the last three days I went to multiple locations along the Brushy Mountain, Mudd Creek, Lost Mountain Line.  I was able to make images in places that were occupied on those days.  The highlight was yesterday, when I went to look at lines of earthworks with Jeffery Wright. He showed me some of the earthworks and artillery batteries the he helped save from destruction due to development and to a new location that he is working to preserve.  The area is under development, but the developer has agreed to save the works and has them fenced off.  Those works are pretty unique as they are Federal Artillery Batteries.  We also visited the Confederate batteries that the Federal batteries were aimed at.  We were there yesterday the 18th, which was 150 years to the day, that they were used during the Battle of Latimer’s Farm.  There was a thunderstorm moving by about a mile away while we were there.  I closed my eyes for a moment to imagine the thunder as the roar of cannons.  It is hard for me to describe the feeling I have while being on these battle grounds on the anniversary of the battle.  It certainly has a special energy to it.  We also went to couple of location that are on private property.  We did get permission.  One of these other locations was on Pine Mountain and Mr. Wright had not been there, but only had seen part of the trenches from the road.  We knocked on the land owners door and got permission to go through their woods.  We were both very surprised to find about 300 yards of very well preserved earthworks and what appeared to be a four gun artillery battery.  That is a property that needs to be preserved.  We also went to one of the largest and most strangely designed set of works I have seen.  They are on Brushy Mountain and are in a place that needs to be preserved from development as well.  Over all it was a very productive three days.  I will start photographing Kennesaw Mountain tomorrow.  There is so much there, I think it will take me about a week to photograph, plus a couple of days at the 150th celebration that is taking place the 26th through the 29th.  

Photography days 11 and 12 are done.

June 14th was my 11th day of photography for my project.  I spent the day at several events centered around Lt. Gen. Leonidas Polk.  I photographed the 5th Indiana Battery where the fatal shot was fired from, as well as the top of Pine Mountain where the General fell.  Later I went to an event at the Kirk House.  The original home is long gone, but a house is built on the original site and is occupied by descendants of the original homes family.  It was used for a Headquarters by Polk until his death.  His body was brought back to the house to lay in state until other arrangements could be made.

Today was day 12.  I went to photography Gilgal Church and the surrounding area, as well as part of the Mud Creek Line.  I will be back out there tomorrow in the same area along the Mud Creek Line.

A Project Within A Project

So, a new project has been born within my current War Was Here project.  It is something I can do in parallel and shoot all the images for both projects at the same time.  The new mini project is going to be a portrait series.  I made a portrait at the Resaca Reenactment that really resonated with me and I have decided to make all the portraits in a similar style.  The subject was standing with his back to the wall of a white canvas tent.  I was able to “blowout” the white background and ended up with a sort of modern look that seems to work well with the juxtaposition of the period attire.  The portraits will all be of reenactors, both military and civilian.  I have acquired a portable backdrop and will use it along with my speedlights to recreate these portraits.  I will have to travel light since I will be on foot and away from the car at most reenactments.  I still don’t have a title for the side project, but I am sure it will come to me in time.  Below is the portrait that I made at Resaca.  All the rest will be styled after this one.  I can not decide which one I like better, but eventually the images will let me know.  I usually lean more toward black and white, but for some reason I like the color one.  Must be the contrast with the black and white image he is hold in his hands.  Or the blue coat.