So, this was not really an "official," hunt for photographs. I had to take my twin grand daughters home, and on my way back to the north side, I made my way through Hillyard. I was interested in getting some views of the new look in Hillyard, with the installation of all the new streetlights. On the way north, I grabbed a large coffee at McDonalds on Market, and headed into the central business district of Hillyard.
Good news was, I could see that the electricians had made a great deal of progress in installing the new streetlights. Bad news was, none of the lights were illuminated. Nope, not a single one. So, my hopes of viewing Hillyard in all the glory of the new streetlights, was not to be. When will the lights actually be turned on? It depends on whom you speak with. As I began to shoot images in the business district, I had the opportunity to speak with about half a dozen people who came outside the Capital Tavern to smoke a cigarette. The patrons from the Capital were generally full of insightful information about when the lights were to be turned on in Hillyard. I heard "never," and also "maybe in two weeks." So, in filtering all of the new information I was given, I was back where I started, not knowing when the lights would be turned on over in Hillyard.
I did enjoy speaking with the Capital patrons, but I wanted to gauge some light levels with a few camera shots. Since there wasn't any significant change in light levels, I gave some thoughts to putting the 40D back in the car, and heading for home. Instead, I just did a few pivots with the tripod, shooting with the ambient lighting that has been there for quite a number of years. I figured I would just shoot a few scenes that exhibited some color. With a few Capital patrons in tow, I shot a few storefronts on Market Street, shook some hands and put the tripod and the cameras back in the truck.
On my way north, there was a small blaze of color, just north of the business district. It was an illuminated sign, which offered up a chance to shoot something with fairly bright color. I had driven past the sign, when I felt guilty and turned around to go back and shoot some frames of the sign. No real cultural or historical significance here, but color...yeah there was some of that. The sign was at the Bubble Machine Car Wash on north Market.
I have a few goals for Hillyard. One, shoot Hillyard, once the streetlights actually get turned ON. Second, shoot in Hillyard from above ground level, and some adjacent rooftops. Third, take a group of photographers into Hillyard for some experience in shooting with low light conditions.
Here are a couple of frames captured in Hillyard on this evening. Nothing of major significance, but capturing Hillyard after dark, is something I chose to do on this evening.
Bubble Machine Car Wash sign:
United Hillyard Mall
PJ's Cafe Express and Mr. Kens Barber Shop, Hillyard, Spokane, Washington
O'Briens Used Furniture
The thing about shooting traditional, or even what some may consider "mundane locations," is that these places might not be there tomorrow. Look no farther than the former site of the Alaskan Tavern, one half block away from where I was shooting. I did manage to capture that location in 2009, before it disappeared. Maybe that is what a camera is for.
John D. Moore, CPP
Spokane Night Scenes