Old Places

I really like old places, and one of that things that I find interesting is going to abandoned houses. There aren’t that many in Santa Fe–lots of old houses, but not abandoned ones. There is, however, one on a road that leads out of town, and about two weeks ago, I stopped in to take some photos.

What I love about an abandoned house, is the feeling I get when I’m there. One of sadness, but one of touching life that has been lived at a place; of touching history. A bit of mystery too, of trying to figure out who lived there, and what their life was like.

I was fascinated by this house, a long while before I went to it. It’s an old bungalow in a land of flat-roofed pueblo style houses. Blue exterior paint in a land of brown stucco. Inside there were lavender walls with white trim windows; a chandelier and a nice brick fireplace. Outside a high fence and a a dog house. A fire had obviously happened at some point. Was that what caused the abandonment? Why was the old rag doll left behind?

Sadness that the life of this fabulous old house is over, but a feeling of lives well lived. Hope you enjoy the visit.

Images Copyright Β© Katie Johnson. All Rights Reserved.

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~ by KatiesCameraBlog on September 27, 2011.

54 Responses to “Old Places”

  1. great photos… but also a pity the house is abandoned.

  2. These are my favorite of yours so far!! This house has a story to tell and you did a wonderful job ‘listening’

  3. Yes, they are fascinating because they hold so much mystery! Great shots!

  4. Loved it!

  5. Abandoned places, be them homes, factories or businesses, offer such wonderful photo ops. Thanks for sharing!

  6. Fascinating! They sure did leave in a hurry.

    The ragdoll shot is powerful. Reaqlly great composition there.

    • Thank you! The ragdoll shot—I was hesitant to include it here, as I want it to have it’s own post. πŸ™‚ I really tried to capture a moment of a beloved doll being left behind. I’m so glad you noticed that! Thank you!!

  7. I really like how you captured the lines and curves in the roof at the chimney.

    I also love how you captured the essence of this home when it was loved.

    Great representation Katie!

  8. I know this house and always wondered what was inside. What a story there must be behind this. Wish I was a fiction writer and could come up with one myself! I love these shots! Amazing sadness and richness t all of them!

    • Ah, glad you know the house, Melissa! It really had me wondering the times I drove past it. Glad you like the shots and can see a story behind them. I really wanted to portray it that way. Thanks a lot, Melissa!

  9. I love old places too – so much character to them. Thanks for stopping by my blog glad you enjoyed it!

  10. Beautiful pictures Katie. Like the oldness and the colors. πŸ™‚

  11. The photo of the rag doll almost makes me misty-eyed. You’re right – why was she left behind? Your pictures tell a captivating story. You would have loved the old boys’ correctional facility near my house. I went tramping through it one day with a friend and looked at the old desks, books, beds, filthy pool, reels of basketball footage… Now it’s been torn down to make condos. What a waste. Now I have a camera!

    • Thanks so much for your comment. That rag doll touched me too, and I really did want to portray her in a way that showed a mystery–why would something so loved be left behind? For the record, i moved nothing in that house, out of a respect for its character and history.

      How sad about the correctional city near you. I would have loved to visit that place and take photos. Places like that are special and should be remembered for the life that was once there. Thanks so much for the comment!

  12. I just found your blog, Katie! I love this series of photos because I adore old buildings. Your compositions are interesting and clearly show a family home and some type of tragedy leading up to the abandonment. The rag doll (possibly handmade) is a heartbreaking element that adds so much to the story. Looking forward to seeing more of your photos!

  13. these are great shots! i’m always too scared to go inside to take pics– fear that someone may be squatting in them and i’ll walk into something not so good! your photos almost make me want to take the risk.

    • You know, I had the same fear, to be honest (should have taken my dog with me). πŸ™‚ Someone asked me if I was scared of ghosts or something like that, and nope, not that. I do want to go and take more photos like this, apprehension and all. Thanks for the compliment!

  14. I hate you! I went out last weekend, found an old deserted wooden, aged shack in the middle of the Mojave desert, waited for sunset and on into the night, AND STILL DIDN’T GET ONE SHOT I LIKED AS MUCH AS YOURS. Maybe it’s the camera. I should have bought the more expensive lens, that’s it. OK, maybe it’s just me!

    • Ah, what a lovely sentiment. πŸ™‚ So sorry your photos didn’t turn out to your liking; I know how frustrating that can be!. To be honest, the only photo I really liked was the rag doll one, but a friend was really impressed by these, which changed my mind a bit. πŸ™‚ I think it helps that I photograph houses for a living, so my eye naturally sees houses in a certain way. And yes, always blame it on an equipment error. πŸ™‚

      • What I really like about your photos is that you get right in to the details. I tend to stand back and take it all in. My photos all seem to have the same feeling about them. Aloof, uninvolved. And then there are your words, your descriptions. Very nice writing.

      • Thanks for noticing the details. πŸ™‚ In my pro work, they want me take photos of rooms a lot, which tends to bore me, and in this house, I wanted to show what I thought was important, without putting all the other stuff in there.

        And I guess overall I do favor the details. I live in the city, and i do take photos of more than just details, but i do find details more interesting to me. I’ve lived here a long time, and well, it is a small city, and it kind of doesn’t feel new anymore, so I try to notice different things, which are the details.

        I’ll post photos of Santa Fe at some point, and you’ll see that I do notice larger things too. πŸ™‚ And thanks for you compliment on my writing! Take care and thanks again for stopping by!

  15. Great collection…love the story you’ve told with this:)

  16. […] katie’s camera blog […]

  17. Haunting sequence —
    Kind of the next step downward from some of Andrew Wyeth’s watercolors and temperas of Maine and Pennsylvania —
    and the rag doll! Speechless —-

    • Thanks for your comment. Thanks also for noticing the rag doll–that was one photo I really took some time to take correctly. I hadn’t correlated the color to Andrew Wyeth. Interesting… Thanks for stopping by!

  18. I love love love all of your photos! Great eye candy!!

  19. so interesting how you’re able to find these houses and snap pictures, eek, i hope they’re not haunted, hees

  20. Ahhhh, I was so intrigued reading this & BAM, my stupid phone won’t show your photos:( I’ll look later with the computer!

    • Ah, so sorry the phone doesn’t show the photos! Let me look to see if there is a setting I have to change (I thought I had made it so you could see it on phones, but I guess not πŸ™‚ ). Thanks for letting me know, and I hope you can see the photos!

  21. I love this series and I love exploring abandoned home sites too. Thanks for commenting on my poetry blog & I hope you’ll visit again.

  22. I love old places and houses too. You did a great set dear Katie, your photographs and your story are beautiful. I enjoyed so much and I felt as if I was there with my camera… Thank you, with my love,nia

  23. I share your passion for abandoned houses. And I’m hoping for a trip to Santa Fe in the next month or so. I haven’t been there is years. Glad I found your blog. πŸ™‚

  24. Wow you really have an eye….I love how it seems that you have made a house that one would look upon and find nothing but damage and distraught into such a beautiful and peaceful place. The images aren’t harsh but rather calming….great work.

    • Thank you so much, Victoria! I truly appreciate your take on this and your comments. I went back there today, actually, and I was surprised at how I captured I did, as it truly is just a mess. Poor house. What a beauty it was until a fire came. Thanks so much for your comment and for visiting my blog!

  25. These images tell many stories, of income; place of residence and lifestyle. All captures in a nice series. The light is so soft and pleasant. Thank you for sharing.

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