As they say, “Better Oily Than Late”…

As a youngster, I was told that I was an “Oily Achiever”… OK, enough with the puns!

It’s been a number of months since I’ve posted as I’ve been so busy! I finally found some time to share some images.

It’s no secret that I love oil cans, or “oilers”, to be more exact.

In today’s day and age of modern technology, we sometimes forget that machines had to be oiled regularly to function properly. The “oilers” used to perform that task came in every size and shape imaginable.

For me, there is something beautiful about the design of these utilitarian objects. I see them as sculptural elements, and it’s also no secret that I love to photograph them. My goal is to bring out their form and the “patina of time” in a way that speaks to the spirit of the people who used them.

Light Painted image by Photographer Harold Ross

Oil Can #7


Light Painted image by Photographer Harold Ross

Oil Can #8


Light Painted image by Photographer Harold Ross

Oil Can #9


Light Painted image by Photographer Harold Ross

Oil Can #10


Light Painted image by Photographer Harold Ross

Oil Can #11


For workshop information please click HERE .

To see more of my work, click HERE.

                                  Follow me on Instagram: @haroldross_sculptingwith light


Photography by Harold Ross

~ by Harold Ross on August 15, 2022.

14 Responses to “As they say, “Better Oily Than Late”…”

  1. Hello Harold Thank you for your as always inspiring newsletters. I was always fascinated with the oilers on the old steam driven ferries that used to run from Southampton to the Isle Wight back in the day.. They were huge wicke’s hanging from oil can type feeds.. the wick would wipe the big end bearing with copious amounts of oil on every turn of the mighty engine, was a sight to see. I took photos with my old Brownie.. alas long since gone Keep up the good work Jason lacey

  2. Love those images Harold , I have been collecting a few oil cans myself your images have inspired me to try plightpainting them instead of just collecting them. I still haven’t found a compositionfor the red drill I am happy with but I picked up somethingh today that may work. I will send you a shot to see what you think .

    Regards Canice

    Sent from my handheld cellular communications device


    • Canice, they are lovely things to collect, and I hope that you light paint them in order to share your collection with others! Looking forward to seeing the Red Drill. :-)

  3. Wonderful images. Even though it has been a few years, I still go back to my notes from your workshop to get inspired!

  4. Yours are cleaner! All the best and thanks for sharing Staffan

    metafor media AB Strandvägen 6 761 40 Norrtälje Sweden +46 (0)8 684 18 350 +46 73 650 3212 skype: metaformedia

  5. Professional photography as always. I am very happy to see you back and found some free time. A busy photographer means that what he is working on is doing it professionally and with dedication.

  6. These are so beautiful! Thank you for sharing!

  7. You imbue a quiet elegance to the patina of time. These are wonderful. Deb


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