|published in the South Shore Breaker - August 17, 2016
Sometimes the subject matter can convey emotion without much help from the photographer.
Shortly after I moved to Nova Scotia, I stumbled across a blog written by a photographer who specialized in documenting abandoned buildings. She traveled the backroads of Nova Scotia and captured many of the dilapidated structures she encountered. I was intrigued and mesmerized by those haunting photos.
|one of the many forgotten homes in rural Nova Scotia
Some people think it’s okay to venture onto properties even if there are signs that say no trespassing. I take real issue with this kind of attitude. Why do some people think they are entitled to go anywhere and do anything they want? It is my belief that people and properties deserve respect. Sometimes there are people who do not want their photo taken. It’s a photographer’s job to respect that. Sometimes abandoned properties are posted with signs to keep out. Photographers should respect that as well. My personal rules about taking pictures of abandoned places are simple. No trespassing if the property says no trespassing. No defacing or damaging property. No removal of items. Everything should be left as is, where is. Your photos are your only trophies.
I can tell people what I think, but that doesn’t mean they share my opinion. Many, many years ago my five year old son informed me "You’re not the boss of me!". He was mistaken, but he was the only one I was ever the boss of unless you can count my dogs and they test that theory fairly frequently.
My formerly mentioned five year old son is now 29, and he is always willing to model for me when he visits us from the big city of Toronto. A few years ago, I photographed him in front of an abandoned mill that was just a short drive from where we lived. Shortly after that, my husband met the owner of that mill and arrangements were made for me to have a personal tour. The owner allowed me access to the building and told me many stories about the history of the mill, the mill workers, and the local town. It was all fascinating and I was able to spend a couple of hours with my tripod and camera documenting all the interesting details.
|the owner of an abandoned mill gave me a tour
|abandoned places can convey a melancholy feeling
|it has been years since a congregation gathered here