Travel Landscape Photography : The North Carolina Museum of Art.

The Architectural Record has selected 125 significant buildings that have defined architecture in our era. The NC Museum of Art in Raleigh North Carolina is on the list. I am fortunate to be located only 5 miles away. Besides it being a great building; it also has Friday night movies on the lawn, a 5 star restaurant, art in the evenings with wine and live music, a 160 acre park including sculptures, top rated exhibits and lectures.

Gottschall Photography NC Museum of Art Tree

Gottschall-Stock-Photography-Raleigh-NC -Museum-art

Gottschall-photography-NC-Museum-Art-Reflecting Pool

Ants: Photography close up and personal 

This time of year ants are especially abundant because the weather is warm and rain is frequent. They will make a line from the door to a small crumb of dog food that fell from Wally’s (my dog) mouth.  My first Instinct is to do whatever I can to get rid of them, having no regard that they are living creatures just looking for a good meal. I found the best ant killer is a little canned dog food mixed with Boirc Acid. Give it a day and they are all gone. Although I’m happy they are gone I feel bad because I know what they look like up close. They are amazing, intricate, detailed beings.

I was always amazed and fascinated with the intricate details that you couldn’t easily see with the naked eye.  While earning a degree in Medical Photography at the Rochester Institute of Technology, I studied macro, micro, high magnification and microscopic photography. I also took a course in scanning electron microscopy.


SEM (scanning electron microscope) photograph of ant mandible


SEM (scanning electron microscope) photograph of ant antennae socket


Travel Photography: A stop along a country road in North Carolina.

Somewhere on highway 32 near Edenton, NC.

Edenton is located in the north east corner of North Carolina on the Albemarle Sound near the Outer Banks. Highway 32 is a typical North Carolina country road. There’s not much on  it other then cotton and tobacco fields, old tobacco barns, farm houses and an occasional church.

After a kayaking trip at Merchants Mill Pond State Park, I decide to go to Edenton for dinner before heading back to Raleigh. While driving I noticed an old white house with a large magnolia tree out front.  The magnolia was so large you could tell it was planted a long time ago. The house and tree looked like they were stuck in time. Across the street were 2 tobacco barns. I was drawn to stop because both looked abandoned and I love the texture of old buildings. Old buildings and houses seem to have so much to say without saying anything at all. They remind me of the portraits of old people. Through all the wrinkles and marks, you know they have a lot of stories to tell and share but you can only imagine.


farm house with magnolia trees


fron porch detail


porch railing chipped paint


North Carolina country road house




Foggy Beach Day

Photography of fog, on the beach in Margate, NJ., Christmas Day. The rain finally stopped and the fog rolled in. It was so thick I couldn’t see the edge of the ocean while standing on the bulkhead or see more then a few feet in front of me while walking. Sometimes Wally would run off and couldn’t be seen. I was glad he always comes back.








Dowth-Mythological Ireland and the Winter Solstice


December 22nd is the Winter Solstice. The southernmost passage of Dowth is aligned to the setting sun of the winter solstice and the light of the low sun moves along the left side of the passage, then into the circular chamber, where three stones are lit up by the sun.


Dowth – South chamber entrance

I’ve always wanted to see the Neolithic passage tombs in Ireland. I’ve seen pictures and have read about the complex of passage tombs which consist of Newgrange, Knowth and Dowth.  Newgrange is Ireland’s most famous prehistoric site. As with most of the passage tombs in County Meath, Ireland, archeologists believe that it was built around 3200 B.C., which means that Newgrange predates the construction of Stonehenge in England and the Pyramids in Egypt.

As I said, I always wanted to visit. On one of my trips with my parents, we were passing by the exit on the way to Dublin. My father was driving so I reminded him that the exit to Newgrange is coming up. Tell me again what this Newgrange thing is and why do you want to go, he said. I told him what it was and that is is about 5000 years old, older then the pyramids. I guess he was a bit tired from all the driving and visiting because he passed right by the exit. I asked him why he didn’t stop. His reply was, “It’s been there for the past 5000 years it will be there the next time”. Fortunately it was there the next time but the next time things changed. Now you are not able to go and explore on your own. You have to take a bus to the location from the visitor center and take a tour. I prefer to do things on my own so we passed by Newgrange and went to Dowth.



carvings on the kerbstone


Tree on Dowth

Tree on Dowth


Dowth-Ireland stone-circles

Stone Circle at the top of the dome




Dowth, or the “Fairy Mound of Darkness”,  dates from about 2500-2000 BC and is the 2nd oldest behind Newgrange. What I liked most is that it is less developed as a tourist attraction so I could explore on my own.

Satellite Dish Manufacturing

Industrial Manufacturing Photography-North Carolina

-Gottschall Photography

I had the opportunity to photograph in one of the largest Satellite Dish Manufacturing Companies. It is the only high volume producer of metal and sheet molded compound antennas in the world. They make their own resin, stamp, press, and paint their metal and composite products all under one roof.

The plant was very large, loud and hot. I photographed in the middle of the summer during the heat wave. It was well in the 90’s outside so you can imagine what it was inside. I guess there’s no way to air-condition a building over 700,00 square feet.  Anyway, it didn’t matter to me. I love photographing in large industrial plants. There are so many textures, shapes and forms.  I also enjoy having the opportunity to experience something that others don’t event think about. I had no idea that satellite dishes where manufactured so close to where I live, how they were made or how many dishes were made in a single day. The dishes in the photo below were all made that day and were just painted. The ones along the wall on the  left are on the paint line.


Stack of satellite dishes at the paint line.

Giant rolls of sheet metal are fed into a machine and stamped into shape. Although there is a lot of automation, actual workers are still needed for every step of the process. It takes about 250 employees to manufacture all the satellite dishes. At this step there are people feeding the metal, monitoring the process, taking them off the belt and packaging them into bins to go to the next step. I’m not sure of how many people were around me or what everyone was doing. I do know that no-one was sitting around.


Sheet metal is being stamped into shape. 


Large machines stamp the metal sheets into form.

Another stamping machine adheres screen and resin to the mold. They come down with such force it can be dangerous. Luckily, there are safety measures in place. There are little sensors that will shut the machine down if someone or something is in the way or too close. When I was shooting the machine kept shutting down and had to be reset. No-one could figure out what was happening at first. After a while of testing and trying to figure it out the mystery was solved. It was my lights. Apparently and somehow they were tripping the safety sensor. Whoops. Good thing it was no big deal and we all had a good laugh.


Compression Molding


Preparation for compression molding.

The top part of the press is one of the most important pieces. I had to get as close as I could to actually be able to see it. It was a bit scary. All I could think about was this thing coming down on me and turning me into a satellite dish. That wouldn’t be fun. I know there are a lot of safety measures in place but the thought still crossed my mind. Its kind of like when you are scuba diving 80 feet below the surface and all you can think about is the theme song to Jaws.


Detail of the inside of the compression molding machine.

Just to give you a little perspective on the size. Here is the full machine. This is just one. There is another next to it and many others of different types and sizes.


Large compression molding machine used in the manufacturing of satellite dish antenna.

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