This project began when my husband asked me to photograph the state for a book he was writing called “In Nevada: The Land, the People, God and Chance.” We had two young boys that we would bundle in the car and drive the Loneliest Highways. I would stop the car and take a picture whenever I thought I should and I woke before everyone and went out and took pictures early in the mornings, particularly on trips to Las Vegas.
There is humor that makes Nevada photogenic, as in a road being named “The Extraterrestrial Highway.” And In Las Vegas there was the billboard “Paris is Coming” next to an Eiffel Tower replica. So that when I saw clouds in disc shapes I wondered if they would have looked like flying saucers to me if I’d been anywhere else in America.
The pictures were frustratingly small at two inches when printed in the book. Luckily Jernigan Wicker Gallery in San Francisco gave them a show and I made 20 x 24 inch silver gelatin prints. But a collector with a keen eye, Maury Kanbar, felt they should be much larger and he gave me the money to make sample silver gelatin prints 80 by 72 inches which sold.
“My advantage in researching and writing IN NEVADA was not just having the company of Lucy Gray (and our sons) on several drives through the state. It was also the way her photographs helped me see and understand the state.” - David Thomson, author of “In Nevada”
Note: These images were printed in silver gelatin at approximately 60 x 80 inches.