Saturday, June 11, 2011

Broken Windows

Face it.  Every city and town we show on City Daily Photo has problems.  Hartford definitely does.

Do you shoot away from ugliness?  Or crop it out?  Or doctor it in Photoshop?  Or steer away from bad neighborhoods?

When I showed the Colt building before, I showed the dome, which is the building's signature and is in good shape.  Here are some of the buildings.  Nice, huh?


31 comments:

Lois said...

The windows might be broken, but the brick is still pretty!

Birdman said...

It is what it is. I like the dark underbelly shots myself. I do not have a photo degree in cuteness. hahaha

Cindy said...

I see this type of urban (and country) decay everywhere- more all the time-it is a shame to see the neglect, so sad. But I also see the former beauty of the structure, and imagine what it looked like, what it was used for, when it was new. Each of these buildings has a story, a history, and a possibility of renewal. I don't shy away from them.

Kate said...

Interesting questions, Jack. Since I think photoshop is difficult, I haven't tried it; sometimes I use the crop button. Ugliness? Since I like portraits, I don't often "see" these photo opportunities. These two buildings make me a trifle sad and wonder about their histories.

brattcat said...

I think most of us include a little of everything, perhaps in proportion to the occurrence of blight in our cities and towns...so those of us with more urban blight might portray it more often. I think the mood of the photographer at the time of posting is also important. There are times when we crop out the raw spots in order to please our aesthetic sense...there are also times when we make the raw spot the center of the image to satisfy some statement we wish to make with the image. Great question, Jack.

Jacob said...

Urban decay we will always have with us...hopefully the city planners have some idea what to do with buildings like this and the area in which they are located...they are redeemable or, if not, they can be torn down to make way for new structures...

Genie -- Paris and Beyond said...

I see beauty-past, a time when these buildings were busy with activity. Photos preserve what we see at the moment and remind us that life changes... I grieve for the lost architecture and the quality of the workmanship. Many cities are capitalizing on abondoned buildings through renovation, a hope for these two beauties.

Great Saturday discussion, my friend.

Leif Hagen said...

Let's call it "Urban decay" but man it does make for a great photo, Jack!

Sharon said...

Interesting question you pose today. I guess I do tend to shy away from photographing places like this. I'll have to study them a little more and find their hidden beauty.

Regina K said...

I find the broken windows and old buidings a reflection of history. All cities have them, I like to see them in photographs. Let's hope the housing market does not bring many old homes looking the same way years from now.

PerthDailyPhoto said...

Sharon is right Jack, you have brought up a very interesting subject and I think it will encourage us to maybe look for different prospective. Every city has it's pretty and ugly side! Great post Jack and great comments.

Randy said...

I love the gray one! It would make a great place for artist lofts. Where is the lottery when I need it.

joo said...

More than right, you can find similar places everywhere!

Sylvia K said...

Oh, yes, sights like this are everywhere it seems these days. The red building, however, has managed to retain some of its original beauty in spite of the decay. Terrific capture and interesting questions, Jack! Enjoy your weekend!

Sylvia

cieldequimper said...

Depends on my mood. Sometimes I'll go looking for decay, sometimes I want beauty and could be tempted to crop the ugly.

Decay like this is very photogenic though and also sad.

Karl said...

You're right Jack, every city has it's ugly side! In any case, the photo is very beautiful!
Have a nice weekend.

Farmchick said...

Every place has its own set of problems. I like a bit of urban decay myself....and a bit of rural decay here and there.

Cezar and Léia said...

"Do you shoot away from ugliness? Or crop it out? Or doctor it in Photoshop? Or steer away from bad neighborhoods?"
All of the above! :)
God bless you!
Cezar

RedPat said...

I guess i go for interesting. Those buildings if they were here would have "studio for rent" signs on them or "true lofts coming soon" signs. The wonderful old manufacturing buildings are all ceasing to exist as factories but are luckily finding new lives.

Dave-CostaRicaDailyPhoto.com said...

This is a sad reflection of what has happened to the manufacturing segment of the US economy. These old mill spaces would make a good location for art studios.

JM said...

This would be a great shot for my 'Decay' series, Jack.

Joan Perry; Sidewalk Curator said...

I always amazed that someone doesn't board up the windows in these places to at least protect them from rain destroying everything.

EG Wow said...

I see a certain beauty in SOME decay. But usually I don't post it on my blogs because I'm not sure other people appreciate it. :)

Virginia said...

Jack,
When I started my B'ham blog 3 years ago, I vowed to present my city in a "positive and artistic way". That said, I've shown some of the down side of B'ham but our city has had such bad PR through the years, I steer away from most of that. I will add that the more artistic
photographs are much more my style. I guess we all wrestle with this. I do like this photo as the windows are very interesting in the composition.

Malyss said...

Old and abandoned buildings often give a great opportunity to make beautyful and interesting pictures. But we often consider our blogs like little corners of happyness, small quiet pieces of paradise in this hard world. At least do I. So I don't dare to post such places , I prefer to offer a pleasant view of my world.

SRQ said...

I agree that all communities have an element of decay. But, to me, the broken windows aren't necessarily decay. Growing up in Flint, MI, I saw this quite a bit at auto plants. The factories certainly weren't decaying at the time. I always thought employees broke the top windows, maybe, to cool the place off or, maybe, it was just kids causing mischief and the windows hadn't been replaced yet. Question: Why were factories/warehouses constructed with so many windows? Was it cheaper than concrete and brick? There's a place I drive by every day in Sarasota with broken windows which I've been meaning to shoot, but just haven't had the time to stop. But, I will. I, too, believe so much of what we post is associated with the photographer's mood. When I'm out shooting, typically, I prefer to photograph something uplifting....which explains why I post so many nature pics.

Sequim Daily Photo said...

I'm sitting here thinking of what would be the ugliness in my town and there isn't a whole bunch of it. There are some trailer parks that are pretty run down. I'll have to keep my eyes open more. There are some Reservations in the general area that are really bad.

Oakland Daily Photo said...

Did you title your photo thinking about Broken Windows Theory? Very apt illustration of the concept.

jennyfreckles said...

Yes, we all have these pockets - and there's a kind of gritty beauty there. I don't mind showing the buildings that were once lovely. I show fewer of the ones that were NEVER nice to look at!

Tash said...

What puzzles me about abandoned buildings is that they just get left...what a waste that they cannot be used, and then shouldn't they be torn down? Maybe soon there will be urban renewal with the buildings being converted into loft apartments. Some of that going on in San Pedro and lots in downtown LA.
Look at the architectural details of that bick one...so pretty.

nathalie in Avignon said...

Yes such scenes are part of our cityscapes - I usually tend to avoid them but I think it's very important not to elude them altogether. They raise important subjects.

I like the brickwork here and the typical industrial architecture. It would be nice if some sort of renovation project could take over.