these are really beautiful!
Thanks Ben and Adam!
Duh! Grafitti. Should I be impressed? Maybe it's an art thing. It looks like a bunch of amateur paintings (?) on old buildings. These are beautiful? These are selling the city? This is what the movers and shakers want to invest in? I just don't get it!
I remember the first time i posted a comment, it wasn't well thought out either. Good luck with your boring life.
Battle of the Anonymouses (Anonymi?)!
^ anon, it's sad that you're unable to find any beauty in everyday scenes. firstly, only a few of the images contain graffiti. many depict murals (i.e. sanctioned public art) and perfectly well-maintained buildings. and if you're so offended by the graffiti consider the shape, the color, the composition of the photographs instead. my guess, though, is that you just want to interject your opinion where it isn't necessary or even relevant. and it certainly isn't productive.
Thanks for the defense, Adam, and I would reiterate much of what you said to Anon. First, I realize there can be a fine line between "public art" and offensive "graffiti." For the most part, my intent is not to highlight the latter. If someone tagged the brick on the Wainwright, you're not going to see an artistic photo of it on my site or Flickr account. Most (though not all) of what you see as graffiti above, I would consider (as Adam indicated) to be public art, ghost signs, and the like. The focus is more on St. Louis' beautiful brick architecture, but I think that the other details (including, to some respectful extent, "graffiti") are part of what makes a city a city. Cities aren't, and shouldn't be, "pristine." What would be interesting about that?And as it happens, a lot of these details you find in any city, not only STL, make (in my humble opinion) for interesting photographs from a color/composition/subject perspective (e.g., the art project on the Mississippi River flood wall). First and foremost, that is what I am trying to achieve here--creating interesting photographs that I enjoy taking/making. Whether they're "selling the city" or reflective of where the "movers and shakers" want to invest isn't within my control. They're what my eyes see when I'm out and about in St. Louis, and yes, I think it is beautiful. Many agree; others, such as yourself, obviously don't. To each his own. So should you be "impressed," you ask? Frankly, it makes no difference to me. I take photos for myself, not you.
I'm grateful to have found your photographs, Ben, for the gift of your artist eye. They call to my mind my favorite photographer, Walker Evans, who tended to photograph both people and buildings straight away, as if letting them pose themselves, and who was attentive to the textures and geometric patterns of buildings.
Thanks Chuck--that's very flattering! I checked out a bunch of Walker Evans' photos after I saw your comment--great stuff. Ben