A photo-essay: Urban decay in Aldershot

Discussion in 'Photography Forums' started by Tobers, Sep 5, 2007.

  1. Tobers

    Tobers
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    Rather than just taking a shot here and a shot there, I thought I'd try a photo-essay sort of thing with a series of similarly-processed pics attempting to tell a story.

    So...I took a trip over to Aldershot as it's the nearbyish (though not too close for comfort) to try and get across how small bits of general tattiness that you normally dont think twice about can add up to an overall perception of blight and decay. I also wanted to play with my Sigma 10-20 which is ideal for this sort of subject.

    I was a bit spoilt for choice regarding subject matter to be honest, although there's quite a lot of redevelopment under way and it's better than it used to be. I could probably do a story of success & regeneration in the same place. It just shows how we can very easily selectively edit and get across a certain perception which isn't necessarily the correct one.

    I thought that I'd get lots of strange questions from people but I was totally ignored. I was quite nervous but after a few shots I just got over it and happily wandered about taking pics of all sorts of things. I did put the camera away inbetween so as not to attract too much attention.

    Anyway, here's a bunch for you. All with the Sigma 10-20 at 10mm on my 30D in RAW. Again, Lightroom is really cool as I applied monochrome processing to one shot including sharpening, contrast, levels etc, and then simply zapped all the other shots with the same settings using the Sync facility. That minimised the amount of time taken to do the conversions. Note that I have found that I can add vignetting to shots by putting a negative vignetting lens correction in - cool - gives the pics a moodier look.

    #1 boarded up
    [​IMG]

    #2 mess
    [​IMG]

    #3 abandoned
    [​IMG]

    #4 substation
    [​IMG]

    #5 tatty
    [​IMG]

    #6 demolition
    [​IMG]

    #7 wheelie bins everywhere littering the streets
    [​IMG]

    #8 great name for a fish & chip shop - doesn't quite fit the story, but it made me laugh
    [​IMG]

    #9 high street
    [​IMG]

    #10 abandoned building with wierd windows
    [​IMG]

    Took about an hour of gentle wandering to get all the pics and half an hour to do the post processing. Nothing too arduous (though I was tempted to say that this was the culmination of 6 months work). Hopefully a few of you might be stimulated to do something similar :smashin:.

    Cheers!

    Tobers
     
  2. cedmondson

    cedmondson
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    Interesting stuff.
    Having worked nearby (Fleet) for many years, I'd associate some 'decay' with Aldershot but you've done an interesting job with this set.
    Makes me realise that recent (e.g. 90's) modernisation programs will one day be villified the way that the concrete horrors of late 60s now are. All IMHO of course ;)
     
  3. Sicknote10

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    #6 Works the best for me at suming up urban decay! seems to have a bit of everything in :thumbsup:

    :rotfl: :rotfl: As a Woking fan I've found this topic hilarious :D
     
  4. Tobers

    Tobers
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    Ah - the Woking fan!! I was going to take some pics of the Aldershot stadium but they have done up the outside of it - used to be a right wreck. It probably still is behind the chavvy double-glazed entrance.
     
  5. Sicknote10

    Sicknote10
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    It didn't get the nickname 'the wreck' for nothing ;)
     
  6. Paranormalist

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    Very good shots, Tobers! 6 stands out for me the most also - the door I like a lot. The abandoned building is quite intruiging too.
     
  7. Tobers

    Tobers
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    Ta. By the way, getting dark skies in monochrome is dead easy in Lightroom. In Develop, once you've made it monochrome (grayscale), click on the little round blob just at the top left of the grayscale/luminance/saturation box. You can then put the cursor on the sky, click and drag down, and it takes the shade right down. Cool :D
     
  8. jonnypb

    jonnypb
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    goods shots and a nice theme. the b&w really makes aldershot look dull

    the one and only time i was in aldershot was at a football match and all i remember of it is the local hooligans throwing bottles at us as we tried to get on the train :mad: so your series sums up aldershot for me :D (No offence to anyone that lives there!)
     
  9. hot-fuzz

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    Its not the b&w that makes Aldershot dull. :rotfl:

    In all seriousness though, i was in Aldershot today and i didnt see anyone taking photos !!!

    I am thinking of getting a house there as the Army are off and there is a whole heap of development going on in the town making a good investment for the future (and that Farnham is too expensive for me)

    Good shots, i like #3.
     
  10. Liquid101

    Liquid101
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    Nice idea Tobers - it's interesting to work this way.

    Perhaps one month we could bend the rules of the comp a little and all submit a set of 4-5 images around a theme?

    No 3 is my pick - nice tones and the figure walking past adds some interest.
     
  11. grantsteve

    grantsteve
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    Indeed an interesting idea, and well executed, some nice shots there Tobers.

    I'd be interested to see what they look like with some noise in them. Might add to the gritty, urban decay feel.

    I'm actually kind of thinking about buying a cheapish film body and getting some B&W film to do the sort of thing I'm talking about!
     
  12. stevegreen

    stevegreen
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    #3 for me too. Some of the B&W conversions look a bit dark to me, but that might be my ageing laptop!!

    Good idea to have a project..........maybe we should have a monthly project thread.........now there's a thought!
     
  13. Tobers

    Tobers
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    Steve - I had you in mind when I took #3 :thumbsup:
     
  14. stevegreen

    stevegreen
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    I'm sure that says something about me........not sure what though :laugh:
     

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