The Ants in the Steel Mill

Photographer Erik Charlton fills in the details on today’s photograph,

“On a tour of one of the largest steel producers in the world. Baosteel is almost completely vertically integrated. Ore arrives at the ship terminal, rides along conveyers to the smelting facility and then travels underground as molten billets to one of several different rolling facilities. This is one of the smaller ‘cold press’ rolling facilities.”

Sure, some photos of the actual steel production, forging or deep drawing stainless steel  might have been the more obvious photograph for this location than a rolling facility. But this photograph accomplishes things that a production photo like that wouldn’t. Rather, it conveys the scale of the place. The way the people stand out, with their business clothing and red hats, walking on the green floor, feel like red ants walking over green leaves between ant hills that dwarf them. It’s a take on the setting that is not always conveyed in industrial photographs.

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