Halloween, 2003

Haunted Shuttle Stop

Halloween that year was on a Friday night — and, as with all Friday nights, I was home alone, instead of out being social. I’d just started the Atkins Diet, so I wasn’t about to have bags of candy in the house to pass out to the trick-or-treaters. Plus, I knew from experience that trick-or-treaters actually didn’t come down our street very often.

As I remember it, the decision to go out and photograph was a spontaneous one. I was in an especially good mood as I affixed my trusty Minolta to my tripod and headed out to squeeze off a roll of Halloween pictures.

These are some of the better ones…

I actually took many more photos than these — some of them weren’t anything special, some of them didn’t have the greatest exposure or composition, and some just plain didn’t turn out. (That happened back in the day, you know, before instant-gratification and error-checking via a preview on a digital camera.)

I mentioned that not many kids came down my street. However, just one street over, there were some great Jack-O-Lanterns and elaborate displays that I wanted to photograph, kids or no kids. I walked quite a bit, actually, eventually walking out to Main Street and talking to some of the college kids who were handing out candy…

Me: I’m staying away from the candy this year; I just started the Atkins Diet.
Costumed Angel: Here, have a Tootsie Roll. It’ll be OK; I hear they’re made of pure protein. *wink*

I took photos the whole way, and only turned around when I finally ran out of film.

Ghostly Ballerina

I took several photos at this intersection, and was actually a little irritated when this ballerina and her parents walked through my long exposure. As it turns out, this one was the most interesting.

Lawn Ghosties

Undead Workers

Six Thirty Four

The woman above saw me and my tripod at the end of the sidewalk, and ducked as if to keep out of frame. It always cracks me up when people do that — I mean, how zoomed-in do they think I am?

Also, see the shielded costumer on the roof? He kept perfectly still as kids were walking up the sidewalk, then moved and yelled to scare the living shit out of the kids (and their parents, too).

I recall being concerned about what people would think about me photographing their children in costume, even if they were just a part of the larger scene. Turns out that I had nothing to worry about, since my exposures were all so long that any people in motion were blurred beyond recognition, anyway.

In looking through these images, I’m taken by not only the elaborate Halloween displays, but by my photography, as well. I think that I was definitely developing my own style six years ago, but I’d like to think I would compose these shots slightly better if given the opportunity today.

It was a great time, though. I hadn’t gotten over feeling conspicuous while carrying my camera and tripod yet, but I was at least enjoying the experience. I feel like those years — the last couple years of college, and the first couple years after college — were where I truly explored and discovered my real love for photography.