Wednesday, November 17, 2010

adventures with s and d @bessemer and birmingham (fujica ax-5)

About a month after canceling our road trip to Birmingham and visiting south metro Atlanta, S and I recruited D and set off towards Birmingham. As we would be arriving around lunch time, our first priority was to locate some barbecue. I searched for the best barbecue in Birmingham and Bob Sykes Barbecue came up. It had several good reviews, so we exited the freeway in Bessemer and checked it out. The building was appropriately quirky and the parking lot was packed, so we stopped in and had a delicious lunch.


After eating lunch, we decided to explore Bessemer before heading to Birmingham. The first interesting thing we came across was the abandoned Bessemer Battery, which appeared to have been a retail establishment.

We wandered around downtown, where I took a picture of the Bright Star Restaurant sign. I also took a photograph of the letter y.

After that, we drove over to the railroad tracks and discovered a vacant train depot. While the building appeared to be abandoned and had plenty of broken glass and other debris inside, there were some signs that a renovation was about to begin. Stacked against a column were several plates of glass with a recent receipt.


Instead of the interstate, we took US 11 from Bessemer to Birmingham in hopes of finding something interesting to photograph along the way. We were sorely disappointed.

When we arrived at downtown Birmingham, we found a few things worth taking pictures of. I took this photograph of the Cabana Hotel sign. At the end of my last roll of film, I took a picture of this puddle in a parking lot that clearly has a few maintenance issues.

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Wednesday, November 10, 2010

adventures with s @south metro atlanta (fujica ax-5)

A month or so after our trip to Augusta S and I had scheduled an expedition to Birmingham, Alabama, to photograph even more rusty crap. The night before our trip, a tornado hit downtown Atlanta and the next morning another line of storms was over Birmingham.

Over breakfast at the Silver Skillet, we decided to cancel the Birmingham trip and head to south metro Atlanta, where, according to our Iphones, there were no storms. Near Fairburn, we found a rather dilapidated abandoned house and stopped to take a few photographs. I took this picture of an abandoned dresser that was sitting on the side porch. I was having a hard time focusing and something about the camera seemed off, but I figured it was just that I had not used my Fujica AX-5 in a while and I needed a bit to adjust from the sharper Nikon D70.

As we were driving along SR 16 (Newnan Road), we came across an abandoned gas station, where I shot this photograph of a decaying Ford truck. As we were getting out of the car to head over to the gas station, a passerby asked if we wer all right or needed help, a marked contrast to my usual haunts in Atlanta where folks ask for change.

Abandoned houses are apparently a common theme in south metro Atlanta. It wasn't long before we came across this nicely air conditioned house complete with an easy chair. It was in a much worse state of disrepair than the one we found in Fairburn and provided plenty of interesting photography opportunities.

After the trip, I dropped my film off at Showcase for development and waited a few days. After bringing the film home, cutting it, and putting it in negative preservers, I took a good look at it and discovered everything was out of focus. So I took my Fujica AX-5 to the Camera Doctor in Decatur. For a quite reasonable price, albeit twice what I paid on Ebay for the camera, he repaired the focusing screen, replaced all the light seals, cleaned, and lubricated the camera.

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Wednesday, November 03, 2010

adventures with s @augusta (nikon d70)

After S and I hit Reynoldstown and Cabbagetown a couple of years ago, we went on a road trip to Augusta, Georgia, to visit our mutual friend H. Aside from photographing, we ate lunch at Nacho Mama's, a delicious Mexican restaurant, got drunk at a bar on Washington Road, paid a visit to the Augusta Canal Locks, and had a blast.

One of the first things we found in Augusta was the old Graniteville Company Enterprise Mill, which closed in 1983 and has since been renovated and turned into loft apartments. The building also contains a history center, which I visited about a year and a half after our photography trip.

We then drove to the commercial district in downtown Augusta and spent some time wandering around. I found this lamp and shadow on a yellow wall on a downtown building. Continuing the wall theme is this photograph of rust stains and shadows. Also downtown, I liked the shape of this letter in a Firestone sign. By this time, our friend H, was looking seriously bored and openly asking when we might run out of rusty junk to photograph. An old rusty safe out in front of Georgia Lock & Safe is one of my favorite images from the trip.

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