Posts Tagged ‘open road’

Santa Clara Pueblo for NMORR

A forest worker tamps down dirt around a newly transfered plant in the Rio Grande Bosque just south of Española in Rio Arriba County. Santa Clara Pueblo has received $6,513,000 in stimulus funds to promote healthy forests and reduce hazardous fuels. (Steven St. John)A chainsaw operator pushes down a tree in the Valles Caldera in Northern New Mexico. Santa Clara Pueblo has received $6,513,000 in stimulus funds to promote healthy forests and reduce hazardous fuels.. (Steven St. John)Elk run in a field inside the Villes Cladera in Northern New Mexico. Santa Clara Pueblo has received $6,513,000 in stimulus funds to promote healthy forests and reduce hazardous fuels. (Steven St. John)A worker carries a newly removed tree on a dirt road in the Valles Caldera. Santa Clara Pueblo has received $6,513,000 in stimulus funds to promote healthy forests and reduce hazardous fuels.. (Steven St. John)Trees waiting to be planted in the Valles Caldera are watered and counted. Santa Clara Pueblo has received $6,513,000 in stimulus funds to promote healthy forests and reduce hazardous fuels.. (Steven St. John)

Santa Clara Pueblo has received $6,513,000 in stimulus funds to promote healthy forests and reduce hazardous fuels inside the Valles Caldera in Northern New Mexico. This was a long travel day for me, but man was it beautiful.

In 2010, along with fellow photographers Michael J. Gallegos, Mark Holm and Jake Schoellkopf, I was commissioned by the New Mexico Office of Recovery and Reinvestment to document how some of the stimulus dollars were spent around New Mexico. This is the fifth post is a series of six on the work I did for NMORR.

2,150 feet underground for NMORR

Sunflowers grow alongside a saltwater evaporation pond at The Waste Isolation Pilot Plant in Eddy County. WIPP received $172 million as part of the Recovery and Reinvestment Act. The saltwater pond is used to capture runoff as part of the mining process. A new pond was built adjacent to this using recovery funds. (Steven St. John)The sky reflects in a newly finished saltwater evaporation pond at The Waste Isolation Pilot Plant in Eddy County. WIPP received $172 million as part of the Recovery and Reinvestment Act. The saltwater pond is used to capture runoff as part of the mining process. (Steven St. John)A construction worker walks across a highway under construction near The Waste Isolation Pilot Plant in Eddy County. WIPP received $172 million as part of the Recovery and Reinvestment Act. The highway will increase access for trucks carrying nuclear waste to the WIPP. (Steven St. John)A construction crew works on a gate along the new highway under construction near The Waste Isolation Pilot Plant in Eddy County. WIPP received $172 million as part of the Recovery and Reinvestment Act. The highway will increase access for trucks carrying nuclear waste to the WIPP. (Steven St. John)A construction crew works on a fence along the new highway under construction near The Waste Isolation Pilot Plant in Eddy County. WIPP received $172 million as part of the Recovery and Reinvestment Act. The highway will increase access for trucks carrying nuclear waste to the WIPP. (Steven St. John)Workers wait for the elevator operator to drop them 2150 ft underground inside The Waste Isolation Pilot Plant in Eddy County. WIPP received $172 million as part of the Recovery and Reinvestment Act accelerate nuclear waste cleanup. (Steven St. John)An employee waits for security doors to open 2150 ft underground inside The Waste Isolation Pilot Plant in Eddy County. WIPP received $172 million as part of the Recovery and Reinvestment Act accelerate nuclear waste cleanup. (Steven St. John)2150 ft underground inside The Waste Isolation Pilot Plant in Eddy County. WIPP received $172 million as part of the Recovery and Reinvestment Act accelerate nuclear waste cleanup. (Steven St. John)Radioactive waste is stored 2150 ft underground inside The Waste Isolation Pilot Plant in Eddy County. WIPP received $172 million as part of the Recovery and Reinvestment Act accelerate nuclear waste cleanup. (Steven St. John)A worker checks electronics systems by headlamp 2150 ft underground inside The Waste Isolation Pilot Plant in Eddy County. WIPP received $172 million as part of the Recovery and Reinvestment Act accelerate nuclear waste cleanup. (Steven St. John)A shadow falls on a wall containing stored radioactive waste 2150 ft underground inside The Waste Isolation Pilot Plant in Eddy County. WIPP received $172 million as part of the Recovery and Reinvestment Act accelerate nuclear waste cleanup. (Steven St. John)Workers install a new secure equipment gate 2150 ft underground inside The Waste Isolation Pilot Plant in Eddy County. WIPP received $172 million as part of the Recovery and Reinvestment Act accelerate nuclear waste cleanup. (Steven St. John)Signs on the corner of the mine walls 2150 ft underground inside The Waste Isolation Pilot Plant in Eddy County. WIPP received $172 million as part of the Recovery and Reinvestment Act accelerate nuclear waste cleanup. (Steven St. John)

Being a photographer has offered me many backstage pass opportunity’s, and getting to go 2,150 feet underground at the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant in southern NM was one of those opportunities I love. Most of the funds were being spent building a new road to the facility, but I couldn’t pass up a chance to go underground. Lighting was a great challenge here, as most of the area is pitch black aside from the headlamps. Scary dark. Creative use of off camera flash wasn’t just for fun, it was essential.

In 2010, along with fellow photographers Michael J. Gallegos, Mark Holm and Jake Schoellkopf, I was commissioned by the New Mexico Office of Recovery and Reinvestment to document how some of the stimulus dollars were spent around New Mexico. This is the first post is a series of six on the work I did for NMORR.

Paleontologist Portrait for The Gallup Indepenent

Albert Prieto-Marquez , Postdoctoral Fellow at the American Museum of Natural History in New York, stands next to a dinosaur skull found near Gallup New Mexico. Photographed at the New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science on Jan. 4, 2011. ..((NOTE FOR EDITORS: Though he goes by Alberto, he prefers Albert in print. FYI)). (Steven St. John)Albert Prieto-Marquez , Postdoctoral Fellow at the American Museum of Natural History in New York, photographed outside the New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science on Jan. 4, 2011. ..((NOTE FOR EDITORS: Though he goes by Alberto, he prefers Albert in print. FYI)). (Steven St. John)

I got a call to make a last minute portrait of Albert Prieto-Marquez, Ph.D. Paleontologist, and Postdoctoral Fellow at the American Museum of Natural History for the Gallup Independent. The fossil in the top picture was found near Gallup NM and is part of his current research.

Gators galore

This summer I took a detour / scenic route on a weekend road trip to Denver to see a concert. I mentioned my plans to avoid taking the familiar I-25 to my mother who told me of the Colorado Gators Reptile Park located 17 miles north of Alamosa, CO. on Highway 17.

Alligators? In Colorado? How had I never heard of this before? I love gators, but growing up in the southwestern desert, they are not too common a site.

I hope to return to the park and spend some real time working on a story in the future.

If you like Gators too, may I recommend a couple things: First, Photographer Jill Richards and her husband Scott left their jobs and packed their dogs and hit the road for a year. I met Jill when she was an intern at The Albuquerque Journal. They have a recent blog post about spending the night in a gator infested state park in Louisiana. It’s a really fun read, might just make the hairs on the back of your neck stand up.

If that’s not enough, check out Trouble The Water, which looks at the alligator farming industry in Louisiana through photographer Matt Eich‘s’s thoughtful eyes.

Yes, dear

I’ve been on the road so much of late, haven’t made much time for this blog. I hope to get you caught up soon, but for now, here is a picture I made looking out the window of my girlfriend’s apartment in Columbia Missouri.