Shoot It. Post It. You Never Know.

Hurricane Bowl bowling Alley, Marion, Virginia

Hurricane Bow, Marion, Va.

Seven years ago…wow has it been that long… we took a family trip to Boone, North Carolina.

It was a great trip with the kids, and it was memorable for more than one reason.

On the way there, or back – I don’t remember – we pulled over into Marion, Virginia, to find ice cream or a bathroom or something.

My wife was driving, I was in the passenger seat and we were stopped at a light in this sleepy small town. I had my Canon Powershot S110 (still one of my favorite cameras) in my hand.

I looked out the passenger side window. The blue sky and  white clouds looked cool. I knew if I shot it, I could turn the sky black in post. Then I saw the cool Hurricane Bowl signage. And the Pepsi sign.  I’m a sucker for cool signage.

I snapped the pic. The light turned green and we moved on. When I got home, I processed the photo and posted it to my Flickr account. It got a lot of nice comments and even make Flickr’s Explore (if you know,  you know)

Fast forward to a few weeks ago. I got a DM to my Instagram account:

Hi. I saw a photo you took on Flickr of Hurricane Bowl, in Marion, Virginia. That’s my hometown and I was just talking about how they are tearing that bowling alley down. I don’t see it on Instagram but I wanted to know the back story! I would love to have even a small copy of that photo!. Cheers.

The writer was a woman named Heather. I gave her my email address and told her I’d get her a JPG of the photo if she sent me an email. Which she did. And, since I had her on the line, I had to ask her a few questions about the town, the history, the bowling alley. She gave me some cool background on the town, her growing up there, the fact that they are tearing this bowling alley down.

This wasn’t exactly a throw-away shot to me. I DO like it – it came out the exactly the way I wanted it to. In fact, I still think about it from time to time. How cool the clouds look. The old signage. The fact that I had my point-and-shoot in my hand to make the photo in the first place.

Then, just last night, I read a blog post from James Victore, the artist, where he tells about story about his connection to Anthony Bourdain.

It’s a good post. Read it. The one call-out in his blog post:

Here is the reason I’m telling you this: you never know who is looking.

You never know who you reach or who you are influencing.

While I had the semblance of this blog post in my head for a few weeks – I was thrilled when Heather reached out to me – reading what James wrote got me to get it down here.

This isn’t the first time this happened to me. Back in 2018, a woman saw this shot I posted to my IG:

Maureen's Bar, Ireland, with a red door and bare tree

Maureen’s Bar

While in Ireland in 2010, driving through the town of Buttevant, I snapped this photo. I posted it to IG, and tagged it #Buttevant.

A woman, Kerry, reached out to me to ask me about it. Turns out, her grandfather was born on the second floor of this building! We got into a nice DM exchange about her family history in Ireland, etc. She was thrilled to find this photo of this small place in a small Irish town.

Which just leads me to this: Take the shot. Post the shot. You don’t know who may find it, may smile when they see it, who may be touched by your work.

You just never know.


© Mark V. Krajnak | JerseyStyle Photography | All Rights Reserved 2023

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