Posted on 19 December 2013
Downtown Storefronts. Seattle, Washington. August 14, 2013. © Copyright 2013 G Dan Mitchell – all rights reserved.
A row of downtown bars and restaurants, Seattle, Washington
This is another Seattle photograph, shot quickly in street style while walking around portions of the city and exploring. It is hard for me to put my finger on precisely what it is that appeals to me about subjects like this, but let me make an attempt. My first impression of such a location, especially in the daytime when everything is more clearly seen and fewer people are around, is that a lot of it is simply run down and even drab – weathered bricks, worn and peeling paint, construction that isn’t quite square. This patina of age and use is itself interesting, and somehow a photograph of it (or the act of making a photograph of it) helps me see it for what it is and for what else I might otherwise not see.
On the large scale, there are patterns that appeal to me – and, yes, patterns are part of my way of seeing. The scene is divided into successively smaller and smaller rectangular shapes for the most part, ranging from the largest one formed by the green facade to the very small ones formed by things like the spaces between the bars of a gate. Superimposed on this are things that don’t fit the geometric grid – the car (which also seems a bit out of context with the old buildings), the roughly triangular shapes of umbrellas, and many other odd little bits and pieces. In fact, if you like this sort of thing, seeing those “bits and pieces” might make the photo become a bit more than what it first seems to be: the figure of a red and white chef statue in the window at far right above some sort of bright green carts, the tree bright blue flower pots and a pink watering can on a ledge, the bright colors near the “Il Chiosco” sign, one door that has been varnished rather than painted the same drab colors as everything else, etc.
G Dan Mitchell is a California photographer and visual opportunist whose subjects include the Pacific coast, redwood forests, central California oak/grasslands, the Sierra Nevada, California deserts, urban landscapes, night photography, and more.
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Text, photographs, and other media are © Copyright G Dan Mitchell (or others when indicated) and are not in the public domain and may not be used on websites, blogs, or in other media without advance permission from G Dan Mitchell.