Monday, July 30, 2007

Gothic


Arch detail
London, ON, April 2007 [Click to enlarge]


Now that I work from home in the burbs, I find myself missing my lunchtime walks through the downtown area. With my camera in hand, I always found a perspective that I hadn't previously seen or considered, and I always ended up seeing my city in some new way. On this sunny day in early April, for example, I saw a snippet of a big old church that seemed amazingly geometric.

On the surface, the suburbs don't really offer the same degree of diversity or interest. The sense of history just isn't there when the average structure is between 6 months and 20 years-old.

I could accept that I'll never find the same degree of architectural eye candy out here that I used to find in the middle of town. Or I could try harder, because there are compelling sights everywhere if we look deeply or long enough.

Your turn: Conventional wisdom often dictates that suburbs are soulless expanses of sameness. But I don't subscribe to conventional wisdom: it's just too limiting. So where should I look for the glimpses of brilliance now that my lunchtime walks are much closer to home?

10 comments:

Scarlet said...

As I said in my last post, I take my camera everywhere because you never know when you're going to see something you don't ever want to forget. I believe good pics happen anywhere at anytime...and yes, especially in the suburbs.

Anyone can take a pic of city life, I have it all around me. It's those quiet moments where something unexpected happens in the middle of nowhere that can make the most interesting shots.

Geri said...

LOOK AT THE DOORS!

D.O.M. Dan said...

You should look all around you. Certainly there are many things to photograph: yards / gardens, homes / buildings, other people walking the “burbs”.

Sara said...

Carmi, the burbs...huh?? Everything! I don't think the burbs are much different than the city...just further spread apart.

Vid Digger said...

Home! There is so much we miss while distracted by the outside world.

Bella Rossa said...

How funny that you're talking about the visual monotony of suburbia. A friend of mine just had her first big art show open at the Indianapolis Museum of Art, called "Emily Kennerk" Suburban Nation." It's all about this sort of thing.

http://bellarossa.blogspot.com/2007/07/indianapolis-museum-of-art-emily.html

patricia said...

I'm sure if you pay attention and look hard enough, you can find some interesting objects to photograph in the burbs. Usually in most suburban cities there is a downtown core which has more of a history to it than the outward sprawl of suburban homes. Old churhces, old signs, coffee shops and used book stores, things like that.

But I'm sorry, I've lived in the burbs(Burlington), and I've live in the city of Toronto for 18 years now, and there's a very big difference between city and suburban life. There is much more history in a city. So many of the houses are so different, and each tells a unique story. Toronto has so many different neighbourhoods, and each one has a delightful collection of one-of-a-kind shops that are much more attractive, appealing and heart-warming than the multitudes of big box superstores one finds in the suburbs. A city has a soul. The burbs? Well, I guess they've got Walmart...

kenju said...

Doors, church windows, gravestones, nature....

Susan said...

You are right. The material is still there, just have to look harder to find it. I also miss my city lunch time walks.

Bob-kat said...

There is a style of architectuire referred to as 'Geometric' but I suspect you knew that! :)

I live on a massive housing estate in teh suburbs and it is very samey I'm afraid, however, if you look beyond the same brick walls you'll notice the little things people do to make their brick adn wooden box their home. It may eb a differnt door knocker, fence, or other embellishment, but it will be there. I suggest you look for those :)