December 18, 2012

Cape Ann Tool Company


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Steve Perlmutter, Mike Tully and I spent almost three hours shooting what was the Cape Ann Tool Company on Sunday. It is a sprawling facility dominated by a warehouse and/or production area comprised of mostly open space with some interesting nooks and crannies, graffiti and a stairway or two. But the prize is this power station, boiler house or foundry … whatever it is. The interior of this structure is dominated by a “Foster Superheater” furnace that stands about fifteen feet high and is exquisitely rusted out. It was a blast to shoot.

We didn’t want to leave, but we vowed to go back. However, the window to do so might be narrow — the site has been acquired by a developer.

In terms of processing … I wanted to bring out the character of both the building and the location overall. This image is comprised of three sets of 9 brackets. It was shot with the Nikon 24mm PC-E lens, using the shift feature of the lens to produce a vertical panorama (vertorama).  I ran each set through Photomatix  using the exact same settings. I stitched the three tonemapped images in Photoshop, using the Merge to Panorama feature. It does an outstanding job with panoramas and vertoramas.

From there, I did some additional stylization in Photoshop where I adjusted the contrast and tones globally then applied a few curve layer masks to isolate sections of the building to bring out some character.

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  1. Very nice work with this image Bob. It really captures the all the gritty details of this place. Seeing your shot made me realize I never grabed any shots of the outside of the building, so now we have an excuse to go back. Like we needed one.