Water Main


This past week our street had a water main installed. It was a fascinating project to witness, but I’m glad it’s over. When I’m working at home or in my office, I need silence when writing or researching — the sounds of heavy machinery are extremely disruptive for my concentration. I’m not certain why this same need doesn’t apply in more public spaces. I wonder if it’s because I’m already actively blocking out people around me in order to preserve my sense of well-being. At home or in my office my guard is naturally down 1 and I’m more easily distracted.

This morning we awoke to the new main being flushed, filling our street like a temporary stream and granting me an opportunity to take some photos 2. My coffee hadn’t kicked fully in yet, so my brain didn’t consider my camera settings as I framed my captures. As a consequence, I kept my ISO lower than it should have been, which led to relatively slow shutter speed for such a fast moving subject 3. Despite this, I love the results. The motion blur of the water jetting out from the pipe reveals the force with which it was thrust out on to the street.

ISO 160
f 6.3
1/160 sec

  1. And break my concentration at your own risk. 
  2. Also, it delayed our yard work for a few minutes, which is always worth it. 
  3. I shoot mostly in “P” mode, it gives me nice control without the frustrations of full manual.