June 26, 2006
I was trespassing, taking photos at the abandoned Lone Star Brewery, a 1930s post-Prohibition temple once known as the “world’s most beautiful brewery.” Now, ten years deserted after a succession of owners—Olympia, Heileman, Stroh, and Pabst—the brew house smokestacks still dominated the San Antonio River skyline and struck me as a decaying treasure of Americana, gutted and sublime.
Inside the steel door of the warehouse, I framed a shot and clicked the shutter. The image—an empty bay crisscrossed by light from shattered windows—was overexposed, blurry. As I adjusted settings to try again, I heard a noise and froze. Whatever lobbed the sound was too close for me to grab my gear and run. A shadow broke the light bleeding in from the doorway, and a German shepherd’s muzzle poked through.