D. Brent Miller Studio News

February 2, 2011            "Helping others tell their stories."


This Studio News contains:
  • A new Featured Photo, Power House in Fog.
  • Photo tip, look behind you.
Featured  Photo


From Brent's documentary project:


The Last Days of the Oliver Chilled Plow Works

Photo: Power House in Fog
Power House in Fog

In 2002, the City of South Bend, Indiana, announced they were going to tear down the dilapidated Oliver Chilled Plow Works site and redevelop the land for a new industrial park. With most of the buildings still standing, the city gave me permission to photograph the last days of the plant. It became a 14-month documentary project, visiting the site weekly and photographing the buildings and demolition. Late in the project, in the spring of 2003, this image, Power House in Fog, captured the essence of The Last Days of the Oliver Chilled Plow Works. Oliver employed thousands of workers for more than a century of the company's existence. And even though the buildings are gone, the spirit of the workers lives on. Forty images were exhibited during the summer of 2003 at the Northern Indiana Center for History, site of the Oliver Mansion. You can view the exhibit online, here.

Signed archival prints of this image on 8.5 x 11 inch luster paper are available, $24.99 + Priority Mail shipping, not matted. This size print will matte and frame nicely in either 11�14, or 16�20 if you prefer a wider matte around the image area. Other images from the documentary are also available. Contact Brent for more info and details.

Or, order Power House in Fog here: Buy Now


Travel Writing and Photo Tips

Travel photography requires constant scanning for images.

You're out and about, camera in hand, and you're looking for that image that will not only say something, but knock everyone's socks off. Grabbing a photo like that takes a little practice, and maybe you have to come back at a different time to get the shot. After all, photography requires patience for travel photographers and even photojournalists.

Typically, when you're walking down the street, you're scanning in front of you and probably a little bit side to side in your peripheral vision. It's just natural. Your eyes are in front of your head. You're looking forward. Those are the scenes that are you easily see.

But, what is behind you. I know. You're saying, "Well, I just came from there and I didn't see anything." That's true, but you were looking at it from a different view point.

Turn around and look. Look behind you. Study how the landscape has changed from your current position.

My best story to tell is the photo above, "Power House in Fog." I had been walking around the grounds, photographing everything in front of me. Moving up. Photograph in front of me. Move up. Photograph some more. Then, a cool breeze struck me from behind and I turned to look. It was the wind pushing in some fog. And there in the middle of my view was the Power House slightly engulfed in the fog while the heavy equipment was clearer. In fact, if you look closely, you can see the edge of the fog as it is rolling through. Five minutes later, the fog was too thick.

If I had not turned to look, I would have missed this shot completely. Its eeriness symbolizes the destiny of a once great company that employed thousands of workers. At this decisive moment, the buildings are demolished and piles of rubble stand where buildings once stood. This image--Power House in Fog--is the essence of The Last Days of the Oliver Chilled Plow Works in South Bend, Indiana.

Turn around. Look behind you. The landscape holds a different view waiting to be photographed.

Got a question about writing or photography? Send an e-mail.

Thanks for reading. See you on the highway.

Helping others tell their stories.

  • Producing print and audio stories, lifting up people and community.
  • Teaching writing, photography and audio production.
  • Consulting on the WordPress blogging platform.
  • Serving customers helping them tell their stories.

How can I help you tell your stories?   

D. Brent Miller
D. Brent Miller

Writer, Photographer

& Producer


Ph: 513-494-0105

Past Featured Photos

Economy Fine Art Prints are printed on 8.5 X 11 archival paper and ink, signed by DBrent.


Lunch Counter

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General Store Porch

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