Photo Story: Blank Stairs
It happened organically like most good found photos do. I was walking back from shooting an assignment at a draft horse competition and saw the kids playing on the bright read stairs with a blue sky behind them.
The assignment was fun, but like so many assignments in Greeley it involved horses and I was bored with shooting livestock. They had recently painted the stairs at Island Grove Arena and they were still bright red. It was early evening and I was running late due to a rain storm postponing the draft horse shoot. Then I saw a group of kids playing on the stairs. I knew there was a cool photo in there some where so I just walked up and started shooting.
The kids pretty much just ignored me. It took a few minutes before one of them leaned against the railing and put his foot up. The sun was setting, throwing long shadows and making the colors sing. The rain had cleaned all the summer dust and haze out of the air and the sky has a stunning blue. His head was in shadow silhouetting him against the sky and making the photo more about an icon and not an individual. The moment was brief, only a few frames worth, but I knew I had a good photo.
In the newsroom at the Greeley Tribune I begged for room in the paper for the photo. All the photo “holes” in the paper were spoken for, but the editors and designers moved some stuff around and my photo ran the next day. Back in those days it didn’t count unless it ran in the paper. Now I just publish them here myself.
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