What’s this all about?

What is it about the primary colors matched with so much metal?

Who doesn’t love excavators, bulldozers, loaders, diggers, backhoes, steamrollers, pile drivers, cranes, compactors…

How beautiful these odd enormous creatures are, grumbling and clawing, like ancient robot dinosaurs put to work.


Over the last 12 years I have been very much obsessed with heavy equipment, especially large machines in an urban environment. I have always LOVED construction and for almost 20  years have worked in the real estate sales and development field. I’ve had the fortune to come into contact with many different types of equipment via my profession.

In 2009 after working on the Temple build in Black Rock City, and the SF Victory Gardens at City Hall, my irrational preoccupation with the subject matter became cemented. Watching the VRL and crane work in the high desert winds, and learning to operate a Bobcat made me realize how much joy these vehicles can give to people, children and adults alike.

I started taking photos with my tiny Canon Elph camera that usually could be found in a rather small black purse at my side or in one of my tall boots. Now, I’ve graduated to and iPhone 11pro. For the most part the photographs are taken from the car (while parked) or in a swift reconnaissance movement that involves sticking a slender arm through a chain-link fence, at times creating a confused look amongst the workers on the job site.

The perfect shot for me is one where there are no cars or other passenger vehicles present and no people. The heavy equipment is the sole subject matter in front of an iconic piece of San Francisco architecture, or on a well known and loved street.

Learn more about the author at: jenysmith.com or get in touch via the contact form below…

Alabama Street fork lift
Alabama Street fork lift

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