My pursuit of photography never really took hold until I discovered that I had an interest in architecture. Skyscrapers, houses, churches… buildings fascinate me, a combination of beauty and function. Even while watching movie or TV shows, I’ll be checking out the scenery for buildings.
I photographed my first textile mill, the Firestone/Loray Mill, Gastonia, NC, in 2002 and my appreciation and attraction for these particular buildings grew from there. I’ve been asked whether I have family connections to the textile industry and the answer would be no. However when I walk inside a mill, re-purposed or not, I feel a connection to the past and the people who worked there. By photographing these brick giants, I feel as if I’m preserving a part of their place in history.
The camera I’ve been using is a Canon PowerShot S5 IS that we purchased approximately three years ago and I’ve enjoyed working with it. It’s a sturdy camera with a comfortable weight and still takes great pictures for what I need from it. The tripod we bought for it was an additional blessing.
At the present time, I’ve photographed thirty mills in the North and South Carolina areas with one in Georgia, and I’m always on the lookout for more. I’m learning how to expand myself as a photographer and hope others discover the beauty I see when I look up at a mill tower or feel just how tall smokestacks are when you stand at their base and look up.
There is much history in these structures and I’m honored to photograph part of it.