Monday, April 5, 2010

Week 14: 4am at Marty's

On Sunday, April 4th at 4am if you were awake and listened very carefully you could hear the sound of shutters releasing all around the world.

The 4am Project ( ) celebrated its second year in 2010 by inspiring over 1100 photographers and counting to wake up at 4am and take a photo of the world around them. A lot of the folks taking shots this year had participated in last year's shoot, but quite a few were brand new explorers.

Leading up to Sunday's early morning shoot I found that I had a really hard time explaining to people what it was I was doing, and an even harder time explaining why. I couldn't really come up with a great reason, other than I wanted to take part in a project that brought people together from around the world to share their love of photography and capturing everyday life.

Last year I took the easy way out and just woke up, stuck my lens out the window, and took a shot of the streetlight outside of my house that was wrapped in fog. You can see last year's shot here: 4am 2009

This year I knew I needed to step out of the house and find an interesting location to take photos, but the problem I had was finding a place nearby that would have some activity going on at 4am so that it wasn't just a static scene I was shooting. After thinking it over for a few days I decided I'd ask if I could take photos at Marty's Donut Land - a fixture in downtown Ipswich, MA that usually does the bulk of its baking between midnight and around 5am.

I called up, and after some back and forth (and explaining again why I was getting up at 4am) I finally got permission to take some photos. I packed my gear the night before, including 4 rolls of Ilford 3200 speed film, and set my alarm for 3:20am. It felt like I had just fallen asleep before the alarm went off.

I tossed on my clothes, grabbed my gear and hopped in the car. When I rolled up to Marty's there was a tow truck parked out front and a pair of guys smoking and drinking coffee. I had no idea there would be anyone but the bakers there at 4am. I said hello and then went inside, dropping my stuff off on a stool near the window.

I went around back to the kitchen and said hello to Walter and Ellie - the two bakers there for the night preparing the next days donuts. They were expecting me, and told me I could shoot wherever and whatever I wanted, so I immediately dove in.

I ended up with 19 images that I really liked, so far anyway; I still have a roll of 120 to develop. It's a mix of stuff from my digital camera and the Canon 35mm I have which was loaded with the other rolls of Delta 3200. The remaining roll was shot on the Yashica Mat.

So, here you have it - Marty's at 4am, and this weeks photos for the 52 weeks project. Killing two birds with one donut:

                                                          image made with bighugelabs mosaic maker


myan/zuppaartista said...

matt, these are beautiful! really cool idea to go to the donut shop! you are hardcore! 4am? wow!

i hope you got to enjoy some sugary goodness as well! :)