Best photographer wandering the streets shooting nightscapes

'The Tower' by Bill Holderfield

Bill Holderfield Instagram @twocrowspictures

On any given night, photographer Bill Holderfield wakes up around 2 am, pounds a Rock Star and hits the road. Holderfield has been searching Lane County streets in the wee hours of the morning for seven years, and his nightscapes tell the tales. 

The images are somewhere in the lineage of Robert Adam’s “Summer Nights, Walking” and Todd Hido’s “House Hunting.” The photographs tap into the eerie feel of the Northwest night as if they were stills from a David Lynch film. 

Holderfield does scout some potential shots during daylight, but he admits they only sometimes work out. It takes the commitment of driving, searching, really seeing to capture these quiet moments while most of us sleep. 

‘Untitled’ by Bill Holderfield

When a scene connects with him, he proceeds to find the right spot to set up his tripod and compose. Holderfield keeps to the streets and sidewalks to try and avoid confrontations from people wondering what the hell he is doing. Although there have been a few instances. Police have posted up to surveil him from across the street, to which he just waves and carries on. 

And, oh yeah, once an old man did emerge from a building with a gun raised. Shook, Holderfield just yelled, “I’m not on meth!” And that was enough to stir a laugh and ease the situation to chat with the gentleman. Holderfield says, “Photography has expanded my life in ways that I’d not thought possible before, so it’s worth dealing with whatever I run into while I’m out shooting. Fortunately, most nights out are actually very peaceful. It’s just me and my camera and whatever I find out there in the dark.” 

So if you see a man setting up a tripod in the street on a foggy night, do me a favor and don’t shoot Bill!