Tag Archives: decay
Last week I made a trip down to Dungeness on the very South East coast of England. It’s a pretty peculiar place, and though I would say ‘each to their own’ I would have to question in this instance why anyone would possibly wish to live there.
One of the attractions for dropping by is that there are several old and decaying boats which have been left on the shore, and these were the purpose of the trip. They’re not very large, and they are pretty similar, but it’s still good to see them and take a few shots.
As usual, the weather wasn’t quite playing ball. I know I can go to places like Iceland and complain the weather wasn’t quite nice enough, but in this instance the weather was a little too nice. I really wanted to take some photos of the boats with large and fast moving clouds behind them where I could stick on the black glass and capture one of the boats with nice moving cloud cover.
Still, it was a good day out and I’m pleased to have finally made a trip there.
Today will be my last day in Austria, hope you all had a great weekend.
I’m finishing off the week with a shot from Orford Ness again. I say ‘finishing off’ the week but I’m currently doing 7 days so they are blending into each other and with a cold coming on I’m not always too sure what day of the week it is.
The window above is from a very small room to the side of one of the 6 labs at the research establishment, all of which were pretty derelict and very much lacking in the equipment I had been hoping to find – this location sure isn’t Pyestock!
I hope you all have a great weekend, and hopefully come November I will have a little more time to play catchup with everyone…7 busy days ahead and then a little downtime.
I recently took a trip to a disused gas turbine engine research facility with Shando, Sophos9 and Lovely-Like-Custard. Unfortunately I wasn’t really in the mood to take photos, which is a huge pity in a place like this. I took plenty of them, but generally they were handheld rather than bothering to take the tripod out, and looking back at them now I can’t get the motivation to process many of them. There’s also a selection where I guess I was lazy as they seem to be pretty badly out of focus.
Perhaps it was the 2 1/2 sleep I had the night before, or perhaps it was just one of those days.
At the end of the visit everyone had packed up and we were ready to work our way back out of the grounds when I noticed the plant in the above image in one corner of the huge room that I was in. As we stood around, a few people having a smoke, shooting the breeze and so on that normally happens when everyone knows it’s the end of a trip but nobody has really vocalized the fact we’re about to leave, I decided to grab my camera again quickly and take a few brackets of this scene. It was one of those times when it just felt right to go and take the shot, and after a day of being unmotivated I really thought I couldn’t be bothered with it, but am glad that I listened to my urge and not my mind as it turned out to be quite a nice shot in the end.
I’m not sure that nature will have the time to reclaim this place before it’s turned into a supermarket distribution center…but it’ll give it a good try I’m sure.
The final shot for this week goes back to the gas turbine engine research facility that I visited back in May.
This place was full of industrial goodness and the metal, pipes, rust and sheer size of the place was such a pleasure to explore and photograph.
Part of the movie Sahara was filmed at this location and the radioactive sign in this cell was one of the things that the production crew left behind. I don’t think the intention was for people such as myself to enjoy them, but we sure do and it’s a sign that looks very fitting for this location.
It’s such a shame this place is going to be turned into a storage and distribution centre for a supermarket chain, but I guess that’s progress and I am lucky to have been able to see it before it goes once and for all.
Have a great weekend everyone, and these automated posts are now finished for the week – see you on Monday.
I haven’t done a square shot for a while, so when I was revisiting images I took in an old asylum in the North of Wales earlier this year I found a shot I didn’t really like originally and found that I liked the image a lot more by making it a nice square frame.
The left hand side of the original image is the part I had the greatest issue with, as there was nothing really happening there and the windows and door to the right of the frame looked too cluttered. There was also a lot happening nearer the camera in the original shot. The whole picture was unbalanced and of little interest.
I’ve been trying to look at some of my photos with a different eye of late, hoping to take elements of the image rather than simply use the whole piece that was captured, and for this one I think focussing just on the interesting corner of the shot worked very well with some great textures and interesting detail.
Meanwhile, I will be halfway through my holiday when this is posted to the blog – I’m sure time is flying for me.
The image on Friday was one that asked you to wash your hands, and this is the same urbex location so I felt it appropriate, after washing, to encourage you to now dry your hands.
I had been to this train depot previously after a trip to the Camden Catacombs had ended sooner than anticipated, but I hadn’t really spent time in any of the rooms that line two sides of it…basically because there isn’t really much there to see. On this trip I was very surprised by the amount I found to photograph in these locations, and have been especially pleased by the three shots I took in this room – it was one of those places that just seem to have worked.
My composition was a little off in this shot and I managed to crop out some of the hand towel machine at the top right and had to photoshop that to look a bit more natural. You’ll note the curved edge at the very top right – this was actually straight to match the left side. Looking closer you’ll notice that it’s now a clone of the curved section about an inch below it.
I say my composition was off, but onsite I had fully intended to crop out that right hand section altogether and just have the towel in the shot once I did the processing – this changed when back at the PC and I could see how nice that section looked, especially the awesome wallpaper in the bottom right quarter.
Alright, the first thing I have to do is admit that this is not a fire station; it’s a disused train depot. However, the vibrant red colour, and the addition of a fire extinguishers sure makes this image feel as if it is an old fire station so I’m rolling with it.
I’ve shown a photo of these stairs previously from straight on, but when we returned to this location last weekend I really wanted to shoot them again from an angle, we got lucky and had some great light that day also.
I hope you all have a great weekend.
I went on an urbex trip away at the start of the year, and when you spend the day driving, checking out abandoned places and taking photos you have no real time to plan where to sleep other than ‘we’ll be at this abandoned hospital around nightfall, so will kip there’.
Sure, this bed doesn’t look too inviting when stood taking a photo of it, but on a cold night when the floor is wet and mouldy this would actually be a nice soft place to put your sleeping bag and fall asleep and at least try and get a decent night of sleep before the next day begins.
I didn’t use this though, as it was taken at West Park and I’ve never stayed there (I opted for a hotel last time I was down in that area).
When I did sleep in an abandoned hospital it was indeed the cold, hard floor for me.
Just a quick post today as I’m writing this at 7am and need to head out soon for an Urbex trip. It’s bank holiday over here in the UK and the sun is shining – of course my location of choice is somewhere dark and unused, and a bit of a death trap. Should be fun!
I quite liked this girder that was (holding up) the mill. The number 13 stood out to me as I was walking around looking for shots to take, but I can’t remember if I actually saw the rest of the text on location – I think I only noticed it after the shot had been tonemapped. Most of the time your eyes are drawn downwards to the floor for points of interest (and to make sure you’re not falling down any holes), but this one immediately had me looking upwards.
Enjoy your weekend everyone.
Alright, I admit it – I haven’t got a clue about trains.
I have no idea what purpose these white wheels served, other than offering up a lovely symmetrical photo opportunity of course. Furthermore, they wouldn’t turn so I could even figure that out.
I like to think they controlled those bumpers in the middle of the image, allowing them to retract or extend as needed…but then I also like to think that one day I’ll open up my wardrobe at home and discover Narnia so I wouldn’t be surprised to find out that their actual purpose is something entirely different.
If anyone reading this knows for sure what they do, let me know (though be warned that you will from hereon be labelled as a train spotter).
I’ve found many doors on my urbex trips, and I particular like the ones that open out in to nothing but a long drop. They usually indicate places that used to have a floor on the opposite side, and now nothing remains other than a plummet to your doom – however I’ve seen one or two where the ‘nothing’ on the other side doesn’t look to have previously been something and, for some reason, there does just happen to be a door there that is pointless.
I’ve never, however, found a functional sideways facing door, and this is a little disappointing.
Yes, I know they would not be functional, and it may defeat the purpose of their being an actual door in place rather than a window or large cat flap – but I would still like to find one that’s in place, and fully hinged and working, even if it’s just because a wall has fallen over.
As you can see, there isn’t much else to say about this image. It was a large empty room on the top floor of one part of an old asylum. It had a lot of windows. I really liked the ceiling which was in a few different colours and had these metal rod supports for some reason, they didn’t look to be very supportive so not sure of their true purpose.
It also had that sideways door over on the left…but it didn’t go anywhere.
In other news, yesterday I had my first photo shoot where I was actually expected to produce results for an end client. They hadn’t really provided me with specific details of what they wanted so I spent an hour and a half snapping various features internally (it was a library) with a few different lenses before heading out to do a few exteriors (which would have been better in more suitable weather).
I took a lot of brackets, but feel I’ll only have 15-20 images to actually show for it by the time I’m done processing them. I’m very happy with those I have done so far though and hope that the client will be also. Once I’ve submitted these it will give them a chance to actually pinpoint any other details they would like me to shoot which I may not have covered in yesterday’s session – I don’t even know how many shots they’re expecting me to produce at this time.
This is the final of my West Park images for now, I hope you have enjoyed the 13 images I’ve put up in total – and haven’t been too bored that there have been 12 in a row.
Last time I visited the creche I am sure it was emptier than it was on this visit as I really can’t remember seeing things such as this cot, and many of the other items that had been left around. I suppose the first visit was my first trip to an asylum so I was less aware of my surroundings somehow, as I don’t these items have suddenly been moved in from elsewhere.
The tiny shoes that I’ve set as main point of focus in front of the cot were laying around out of view in the corner of the room, so I positioned these and straightened up a few of the square tiles on the floor a little. With hindsight I wish I had moved the shoes forward a lot more so that they are separated from the cot more. Nevermind.
As this particular image is published I will be one day into a three day urbex trip taking in various asylums, schools, churches, breweries, and so on. Hopefully that means there will be a nice chunk of images to process over the coming weeks. I still have other images from this location so I’m sure a few will be making their way back on to the blog at some point.
I hope you have a nice weekend, and here’s the other images I put up of West Park should you have missed any of them:
I’m not too sure what the fireplace cover type piece of wood is in this shot. It was hinged on the left hand side with another part of it going back to the fireplace, so I guess it could be the remnants of playhouse of some sort but I didn’t see any traces of the rest of it anywhere (if I had I doubt I would have resisted the urge to piece it together and have a little play in in to be honest).
One of the issues I’ve had with many of these West Park images is that there has been pretty much nothing but grey sky outside the windows and this appears like a blown out white in most of the shots. I was happy that this one at least had some part of the wing behind it which allows for a little view out of the window.
I’m going away for a few days so have scheduled some posts in advance – hurrah for Wordpress! There’s another coming up from West Park and then I’m digging into the archives a little as I simply don’t have the time to process a whole batch in advance. Do you guys leave a bunch on standby or do you tend to just process an image each day? How do you work around the busy times in your life and maintain a consistent post rate?
I would hate to see the results of any tests run of the germs in the toilets of these abandoned hospitals. The plumbing is long gone, but I’m sure people (most likely those who are exploring) use them to relieve themselves. Oddly, the smell is usually not that pungent, it just seems to seep into the stale air to join the rest of the decay.
This particular toilet appeared to be quite unique as it had some toilet roll in place, not something you often see. How long it’s been there I don’t know – I didn’t bother touching it to see if fell apart in my hands.
I seemed to take this photo at a really weird angle. Whereas at the time I think that I just wanted to try and get in the toilet roll, the toilet itself and the sink, I seemed to have managed to have lines that were at odd angles throughout in the original shot which you can see below. As such I spent some time trying to distort, and skew and change the perspective in a way that allowed me to then crop without losing too much detail, and so that the lines were pretty straight and at the same time without distorting the main focal points too much. I think it turned out quite well in the end, and I was then free to continue with the rest of the processing.
Yesterday I made a final trip to West Park. Though I could return at some point and take a few further detail shots, or perhaps a few more such as this where I’m posing in some way, I feel it would be less enjoyable with each further visit. The construction crew are quickly working their way through the place, and were pretty angry at our being there yesterday leading to a blood pumping chase and a mini game of hide and seek. Oddly one of them ran into the building after me, shouting and cursing, and followed me into the room with the grand piano, but even though he was within 3 or 4 meters of me I managed – somehow – to avoid being seen and dived into a nearby toilet to wait out for a while.
All good fun, but the rest of the place is going to be like that soon and it makes going there for specific shots that little bit more difficult.
The above was just an impromptu shot where we had been about to leave one of the wings and the chair was simply sitting in this unexciting room really inviting someone to sit down and have their photo taken – and so I obliged. The chair was a lot softer than it looks and I seemed to melt into the back cushioning, hence the terrible posture (not that my posture is great at the best of times).
Though the mask I was wearing is actually blue in colour I thought it looked a little better in this instance to drain the colour a little bit, and I think that along with the general blur throughout the rest of the scene worked out quite well.
In other news, this post means that I have posted one image per day on my new blog for 1 month now, and this includes Saturdays and Sundays. It hasn’t been easy to always fit in processing around work, a social life and having time to actually get out there and shoot things – and I’ve only ever had 2 posts scheduled in advance at a time to provide that room – and these are generally scheduled for the weekends when I know I won’t be at my PC too much.
I really admire how you lot do manage to maintain one post per day on your own blogs, especially if you don’t do this for a living. It takes a lot of drive to do this and I’m sure your readers appreciate the consistency. I also have to admire, and thank, all of those people who take the time to comment and retweet not only my work but those of others. It amazes me how you find the time to and the energy to keep up such a routine on a daily basis – I know I look at more images from others than I comment on, and retweet less than the average photoblogger might, but I appreciate it every time I see someone come here or promote an image of mine, so thank you.
This is all that remains of the main hall at West Park asylum, a burnt out shell after a fire in 2003. With a loud generator and construction staff who seem to be working in all directions from here it’s not a very peaceful location even though it looks like it may be.
I can only imagine how this place looked when the hospital was functional, and exactly what it was used for. With a hospital that could cater for up to 2,000 patients perhaps it was a main canteen of some sort churning out meal after meal all day to various groups. If anyone happens to know, please feel free to drop a note in the comments.
I remember that I used to sit in these types of chairs in school, bright orange with a bendy-ish back and a convenient hole to interact with the person in front with – teasing the girls by poking them with a pencil, and injuring the boys by poking them with a compass. It’s good to see what was used for my school was also used for hospitals around that time, and indeed before.
I also remember how we used to run up to one of these chairs and jump on it with one foot and place your second foot on the chair back, which would turn the chair over onto it’s back and – when done successfully – make you look pretty cool as you ran over it. I didn’t bother trying that with these chairs at this time – I think any excessive momentum of flipping a chair over with my added weight would have meant both the chair and myself would be on our backs, and probably one floor lower at the same time.
The chairs here actually look a little more inviting than they did on location, which is nice. The same room had one of those holes in the wall with little doors so I think it may have been some sort of relaxation room that allowed you do get food prepared in an adjoining room. I like to think that the patients in this ward used to sit in one of these chairs by the window eating a nice hot bowl of soup on a wintry day, looking outside at the snow on the ground.
Some of you may know of the Monty Hall paradox, a probability puzzle involving a game show host, three doors and a goat. If you don’t, check it out on Wikipedia.
Obviously this image has four doors rather than three, and all of them are open rather than closed – hence why I have used the word Variant in the title. Though, to be honest, the title of this post does just sound like it could be an episode of the The Big Bang Theory.
The shot is another from West Park which is the running theme throughout this week. I had such a good time there on Sunday and am really enjoying working through the brackets taken and picking out ones that I wish to process. I should be returning there again this weekend so will likely bore you with more of them…but I’ll try and get some variation into the posts at some point in the near future – perhaps I’ll dig into my shoebox over this weekend and pull out a nice non-HDR macro or similar to really shake things up.
I really like how the doors are open in this shot and the fact that each of them are casting a shadow which breaks up the otherwise quite light corridor. The shot itself was an unexpected treat. I knew this area didn’t go anywhere and we needed to take stairs at another part of this ward to get to where we wanted to; entry to this section was across a small beam of decaying wood where the rest of the floor had fallen in already, and one of our party managed to put his foot through a part of the floor that remained. After edging across that beam this was pretty much the only shot that was there, but I’m glad I went ahead and took it as I feel it turned out quite well.
Disappointingly there was no goat behind any of the doors.
I was pretty happy to stumble onto this corner of the asylum. An old bed with suitcases on it, a couple of doors to the left (though I cropped one out), some great textures in the peeling walls and that lovely green mess that was building itself up on the floor. It’s a scene I looked at and simply thought ‘I sure can work with this’.
I took a few different shots of this scene from different angles, but in the end I really liked it best just facing it straight on and without seeing what was in the corridor behind the door.
I’m really enjoying going through the images I took from this asylum last weekend. My trip certainly made up for the previous attempt there and I managed to get several great brackets. It’s a shame I couldn’t have seen it in it’s prime, and that it’s now being ripped down – but I’m arranging another trip back there in the near future to try and do a few more shots I have ideas for.
There are still more images to come from my last session though…
When I was at Hellingly Hospital a few weeks ago there wasn’t much left. Graffiti and bathtubs were pretty much the running theme throughout the rubble and peeling wallpaper.
I obviously had to make use of my newly purchased mask (though I’m still not 100% sure of what it actually is – alien, old man, zombie?), and what better way than to lie in a bathtub? The above image is the result of that.
I still need to think up a name for this ‘character’ as I do seem to be taking a few self portraits wearing this particular mask. A name that ties in with urban exploration would of course be quite fitting…so if anyone has any suggestions, let me know.
This is another shot from the lovely Lillesden School for Girls. When we arrived at this location we were a little shocked to see that we had been spotted by someone and thought our trip may have come to a premature end before even gaining access. Luckily it turned out to be another happy snapper who was there for the same purposes, but who had decided to vacate as soon as we arrived. Maybe as a solo photographer he felt uncomfortable with two strangers arriving and didn’t know whether we were good or bad eggs.
Although it didn’t show up too well in this shot Mickey has a fluorescent green blood splatter glowing very faintly around him, the dying remains of a glow stick of some sort. It’s a little more prominent in the bottom right hand side of the image where a large gloop appears to be formed on the black surface.
I’m not sure that Mickey Mouse would have green blood, as I assocate that with aliens rather than cartoon mice.
I also don’t know why he decided to hang himself, or indeed how long he has been there for.
If anyone knows the particular artist (and the motivation behind this image perhaps) then drop a little note in to the comments box if you would. Thanks.
This is the third image I have processed from the Creche at West Park. With each of them I seem to have a morbid fascination with the fact the area was designed for children who have long since gone. Hopefully they have all grown up to live happy and healthy lives, but with this location, and with the top floor of the Lillesden School for Girls, my imagination goes into overdrive and I think of ghosts, or a sense that the children have just disappeared rather than moved on, and that they haven’t changed at all, remaining as they are in these places rather than growing up. Not quite as jolly as Peter Pan, but that’s where my mind goes to.
My initial thoughts on this image were to add a blurred edge to the right hand side as I wanted the long, empty, decaying corridor to be somewhere that the viewer notices but doesn’t want to go. After playing with that for a while, however, it really wasn’t working and I needed something else that would give the same sense of a forbidden place that was cold and would only lead you to danger. So I abandoned the blur altogether and went for a reduction of colours to try and give the impression of coldness, and as if the corridor itself is dead.
If you’re a Harry Potter fan, this corridor is the kind of place I can imagine a Dementor gliding through, with all life and colour being zapped out of it as they work their way through it.
Unfortunately the lack of blur means that the focal point of the two soldiers is now lost a little to the corridor itself. They stand in warning, and I hope are urging the viewer to go no further down this path, but to take the left hand door way instead which is altogether a warmer and safer option.