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The Ladder Share This on LinkedIn   Tweet This   Forward This

22 August 2023

In the hustle and bustle of repairing a 30-year-old garage door opener the other day, we paused to catch our breath and noticed the ladder framing the worn part resting on the garage floor. The light was just right.

The Ladder. Shot with an iPhone 6 Plus at f2.2, 1/15 second and ISO 50. Processed in Adobe Camera Raw.

We'd been using our iPhone 6 Plus during the repair to illuminate some dark areas of the unit and document how things had been (like the tension on the belt) so it was no trouble to grab the phone to take the shot.

The lighting is a mix of diffused sunlight and fluorescent shop lights. The incandescent bulbs on the opener were not functioning after we unplugged the unit.

We didn't give it much of a thought. We just liked the way the ladder framed the part in that light.

But we couldn't forget the shot.

So we opened it in Photoshop and did very minimal editing. Recovering the highlights, adding some Dehaze and recovering Shadows, more Clarity and Texture. Just small amounts so we didn't stray from the original color and tone.

It's a rickety, paint-splattered, old ladder, a chewed up, original sprocket gear, a painted but scratched up garage floor. Nothing about the scene is photogenic.

And yet it represented a moment when we knew we would be able to get the opener running again for $40 instead of paying $800 to have a new unit installed.

The triumph of the mind, perhaps. Symbolized by the ladder on which it would ascend to finish the job.

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