This room at Hellingly Hospital didn’t have much to say for itself.
It was similar to a lot of the other rooms, and in many ways was less interesting. Though I take a lot of photos on these locations I don’t always sweep through the place taking a photo of every room. I do like to look in every room that I can, and walk around the places, but I find this is done simply to build up a feeling for the place in general and help me connect a little more with it. As mentioned in my earlier post, I’m more comfortable with shooting in locations that are familiar so walking around, imagining how a place used to be and who used to be there all help me to get a feel for a place and this, at the end of the day, helps me to process the images in a way I feel is right.
Still…this was an unremarkable room in a location that had many similar rooms within it. Yet it was one of those rooms that I felt were just calling out to have a photo taken, for some reason.
I remember walking through this room, the loud cracking of items underfoot near to the window – echoing around the empty room and adjoining corridors like a gunshot. I viewed it from various angles and liked the puddle on the floor.
It was also a set of brackets that were calling out to be processed first in a long line of images from this location. I attempted to do so previously, and failed due to it being uninspiring. It didn’t help that elements of the window were blown out.
Again though, there was something about the puddle and reflection that hooked me. I returned to this image last night, whilst inebriated, and processed it in a state where I wasn’t fully aware of what I was doing.
This morning I looked at the image again and quite liked it. I see several flaws with the processing, mainly around the window, but am happy to live with that as I don’t think the image will ever be what I want it to be, simply because I don’t know what that is.
The title refers, of course, to the Hitchcock film where James Stewart plays a photographer who is confined to his room after an accident and sits in his wheelchair looking out of the window, convincing himself that a neighbour has killed his wife. Though, in this instance I’m not looking at the main window in the image, but that of the one reflected in the puddle. I like how the brick wall you clearly see outside the main window is reflected in a way that represents a curtain, pulled open for the voyeur to take a peek outside. It’s detached from the reality of the room, suggesting to me that there is something more going on than what you see on the surface.