Starlite

Vignetting...

Even a good thing can be abused. The best way to treat photography is like having your favorite meal, it is all about portion control.  Just enough is good, too much is bad.

Traditional vignetting is created by darkening the corners and pulling the visual interest to the brighter image center.  The first time I experienced vignetting it was because I accidentally stacked too many filters on my lens.  This create an out-of-focus optical 'wall' around the edges and I didn't totally dislike it.  Over time and experimenting I did learn to control the degree of vignetting, but it always complicated cropping the image after the fact.  This is a type of mechanical vignetting.

Today vignetting is accomplished digitally and can take place after the image has been cropped.  The Starlite-14 drive-in movie theater above serves as an example of just a bit too much vignetting.  A learned eye would recognize that the lower right corner looks somewhat artificial. The clouds provide enough drama without the added special effects.

Drive-in movie theaters are disappearing and not being replaced.  As sad as this might seem, it does create a photo opportunity and it is the responsibility of the photographer to preserve the past on behalf of the future.

The Starlite-14 is located on Highway 14 in Richland Center, Wisconsin.  It was opened in 1952 and still operates from May through September.  It has room for 500 cars and uses a traditional speaker system.  Very old school.