smoky mountains

East Tennessee Gothic
  • When you woke up this morning, it was 70 degrees. It’s now 50 and there’s a massive thunderstorm. Now it’s sunny again.
  • You drive by the TVA lakes in the Cherokee Forest. They are beautiful. Then you realize that whole communities are under the water.
  • You go by a local cemetery at night. There are solar powered light up crosses over many of the graves. They resemble the souls of the dead.
  • You enter a local town. It’s pleasant. The people are friendly. Then you see a sign stating that one of the branches of the Trail of Tears started here.
  • You are driving through the mountains. You miss your turn. Suddenly, you are on a winding back road lined with old trailers and ramshackle houses. Old men with chewing tobacco in their mouths, women with flyaway hair, and shirtless children stare at your passing with vacant eyes.
  • You are in Knoxville: a vibrant, fascinating city. It’s also home to the the Body Farm, where corpses are left out to rot for science.
  • You are hiking in the Smoky Mountains. It is warm, sunny, and pleasant. Then, the clouds roll in, the temperature drops 10 degrees and, in the distance, you hear the sound of a banjo.

Post sunset layers and hues. The window of time between sunset and actual night time is probably one of my favorite times to shoot. All the colors and beautiful light transform the scene into something so utterly different.

Photographed by: Paolo Nacpil ( tumblr | instagram )