I am pleased to announce that seven of my photographs were selected for the Sycamore Shoals Hospital main entrance. Early in September, Mountain States Health Alliance renovated the entryway, vowing to brighten it with meaningful imagery from Elizabethton.
The choice of subjects and interior design was the creative work of Missy Whitehead of Missy Whitehead Designs. She selected two of my images, Dogwood Blossoms and State Line Drive In from my portfolio. I shot the remaining five from a set of subjects she requested.
If you are wondering about the prints themselves, they are printed on 6mm PVC and mounted using one inch aluminum standoffs. The effect is stunning, and the colors are inspirational. You may not know work like this is available in the Tri-Cities area. SpeedPro Imaging (owners Julie Schwab and Ed Burns) printed these using large format flatbed printers in their shop by Tri-Cities Airport.
Elizabethton is a city of surprises, and one of those is architecture. One such prize is the former Ritz Theater (Birchfiel Building). With its Art Nouveau style, it presents a striking facade on Elk Avenue. The image used is a composite of multiple frames (to improve detail).
Sycamore Shoals State Park is beautiful in spring as the dazzling dogwoods in bloom attest. I caught these dogwoods early in the morning, just when the sun’s light first touched them and before the morning dew disappeared.
The third print emphasizes architectural details of the Capt. L.H. Rhudy House. According to the Elizabethton Walking Tour, this is a “Queen Ann” style home built in 1894. I am enamored with the variety of building materials woven with shapes and designs, and I am sure living in this home was a delight for the Captain and his wife Carrie.
Conveying a sense of quiet reflection, this sunset taken at Lakeshore Marina was the perfect setting to illustrate Watauga’s recreational aspects. I appreciate Lakeshore security granting me access so I could create this image.
Sabine Hill is a historic house located at the west end of Elizabethton. For this shoot, I waited for evening light to illuminate the front of the house and emphasize the bright red door. This spot presents the home in its restored glory atop a hill, framed by old, massive trees.
My Veterans Walk of Honor picture, taken at the Elizabethton Veterans Memorial, is a close-up intended to highlight that real names, individuals, gave their lives so we could live in peace. The angle captures multiple reflections of the Veterans Memorial clock, symbolic of shattered time.
Locals know the story of State Line Drive-In Theater, how this little drive-in nearly became a relic of Americana in 2013 when movie distribution and projection went digital. To upgrade a screen to digital is a $75,000 investment. It’s a long story and not mine to tell, but through a get-the-most-votes contest sponsored by Honda Motors’ Project Drive-In, State Line was one of only ten drive-in theaters across the United States selected to receive a free digital upgrade. When I contacted the theater for permission (one should do that before roaming private property, especially at night), they told me I was welcome, but they were going to renovate, including their sign, in the spring…and wouldn’t I want to wait for that? But this was what I wanted to photograph: the declining theater, bathed in cold moonlight, a look at what State Line would have been had it not been for the hearts its fans, who outvoted communities ten times its size to keep their vintage drive-in.
I hope that the photographs hearten and cheer patients, visitors, and hospital staff. To me, these images reach into the past, yet beckon a future that will be what we make of it. We all are a part of local history, a history of settling, living, protecting and preserving life in the Carter County foothills of Appalachia.
(Inquiries and questions about these pictures and the project are welcome through my contact page.)