Faded places

reflections on an abandoned building

Reflections - 2010

Every community has its empty places, faded and overgrown. Some of these, when there had been no design or charm to begin with, become a blight on the landscape. But others have personality and become a part of the character of a place, in their decline adding a patina of charm and history.

How do the well-intentioned and civic-minded learn to tell the difference, so they can carve away the decay and blight while leaving the history and charm in place?

red gate to overgrown courtyard

Red gate - 2010

10 Comments on “Faded places

  1. “How do the well-intentioned and civic-minded learn to tell the difference?”

    They probably can’t and I suspect that’s why there are people who make a living producing faux patinas for the living areas of the well heeled.

    When I was in Santa Fe a few years ago I notice all the “stressed” furniture and I liked what I saw. I resolved to make some when I got home, but the trouble was that there is something that is hard wired in my mind that won’t allow me to produce anything that is rough. Everything I make in wood always ends up, smooth and clean.

  2. I fear you are right, razzbuffnik. Disney has made many millions (or billions) at this. In Florida they now have entire communities themed with a faux patina of early 20th century charm. However, without paying attention to the heart of these communities and how they function within their environments, they are still just anonymous suburbs.
    I don’t mind faux-whatever decoration, whether distressed wood or painted walls, as long as it does not try to be something it is not. It can be an art form in itself. However, the integrity is lost when the faux tries to be the real thing that it is emulating.
    So for me you can keep the wood smooth to show off its inherent beauty, unless it is old worm-eaten wood from the ocean you are starting with!

  3. I was going to say “they can’t” … but Razzbuffnik stole my thunder … or lightning … or something.

    One person’s character is another person’s blight.
    I’ll just be happy and groan as it goes.

  4. Hi planetross. I’m sure you are right, even though razzbuffnik stole your lightning. Being happy and groaning as it goes is probably a really good way to be! Thanks!

  5. Speaking of groaning, here’s your friend from Massachusetts wishing we just had a faux election! But, alas, we did not. BUT! My day just improved, tho, cuz I got your package, Don!! Honestly, this is just what I needed! They are…boooootiful! Creativity, ahoy.

  6. Oh Pat, that election was a groaner, and an indication of how tired of people are of being left aside while the bigs wheel and deal with each other (regardless of party). Sad that the true colors of the victor went unrecognized by so many.
    I’m so pleased you are happy with what I sent you. Have fun!!

  7. Beautiful intriguing photos. As usual, I am partial to old buildings and architectural features, whether faded or not. Reflections has a soft “watercolor” look to it and Red Gate is very striking with the primary colors dominating.

  8. Thank you, Catherine. I liked the colors and the appearance of transparent washes on the first image, but was a little put off at first by the stability and lack of tension in the bold primaries on the red gate. The subject matter and the dynamic of the slanted light made that one for me.

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