These Detroit photos are my attempt to express why the city fascinates me.
When I first started in my current role, I handed my manager a recommendation for my geographical focus, which included Miami. He basically handed it back to me with an “uh, no” and pointed out that, since I live in Chicago, focusing on Detroit would make better sense. Detroit is not how I roll: Miami is how I roll. But clearly my boss does not give a damn how I roll.
As it turned out, I love going to Detroit. Technically a Minnesotan I identify with the Midwestern sensibility and humor found there, the men are the most handsome in the country (actually, the men in Miami are good-looking too, but too many play on the other team), my co-workers are cool, DTW is efficient and easy, the Middle Eastern food is a refreshing change, staying at The Henry is a treat, my customers are nice and the town is so damn photogenic.
I know. You don’t think of Detroit as photogenic, right? Well, it all depends upon the type of photos you like . If your taste runs towards pictures of sunsets, rainbows and kittens dangling from branches then the city may not be your cup of tea. But if you harbor a bit of a dark streak, an appreciation for edginess and a healthy sense of morbid fascination then Detroit has a lot to offer you and your lens.
I am perfectly happy just driving through the neighborhoods (in the daylight, doors locked, windows up) and snapping away. There’s no shortage of weirdness, decay, contradiction, humor and displays of the human spirit to be captured here. I hope my Detroit photos have done the city justice.
The abandoned building looming over the intersection of I75 and I94 has fascinated me since I first saw it.
I finally mustered up the courage to see it up close.
This next one is my favorite of my Detroit photos.
I love the Cartier in roaring 20’s font contrasting with the competing graffiti beneath it. Below that, a phrase painted in what appears to be Russian font. Further down, “BOO AMaNDA”. Who wrote it and what does it mean?
A quick google search and I learned that this structure is the Fisher Body Plant 21, built in 1919 to manufacture automobile coaches.
I ran across some amazing urban art not far away, close to Eastern Market.
There’s so much to love about the image above: the attention to detail, bright colors, humor, movement: but the aspect of it that especially cracks me up is that the artist’s style evokes that of the cartoonist Don Martin of MAD Magazine (and I have not picked one up in decades).
Some random driving in the same vicinity brought me to this house.
A forsaken residence that exclaims, despite all appearances, that everything really is ok. What I want to know is, who is parking their bicycles in front of it?
The front door to the It’s Ok! House:
I hope you enjoyed my Detroit photos.