The first time I saw a slag pile was 1992 while pulling in to my girlfriend's parents house (now my wife). It was towering overhead, looking as if it was about to crush their home, while being more than a mile away.
It took many years to figure out how exactly to capture these behemoth black mountains. On my visits over the years I’ve photographed them in many different ways, but it wasn't until I saw the black hills trimmed with white snow and the requisite white birch trees that I was inspired. Add the winter setting sun for yellow highlights, deep blue shadows, and little lens flare and I was struck with it’s odd beauty.
Are these remains a blight on the community? Certainly...but I also find them beautiful. This project isn't as much of a statement on an industry damaging what I’m sure was once a pristine landscape as much as it is a commentary on finding beauty, and capturing a sense of place.