Archive for the ‘Urbex Photography’ Category

Urbex in Cuba: Havana Train Wrecking Yard

Posted by thirtyfootscrew On October - 4 - 2009

Cuba Street View I just got back from a trip to Cuba where I spent a couple of nights in Havana before going to a beach resort for a much more traditional holiday and I thought I’d share my mini-urbex outing I had in the city.  Aside from trying to get a feel for the place and doing the touristy-type things I also took a little walk with my camera during which I came across a corrugated iron enclosure, my urbex-based 6th sense made me think “hmmm… I wonder what’s in there?” and I navigated round to the entrance (FYI, it’s on Dragones between Amistad and Industria – near the Capitolio).

It turned out that the yard was full of wrecked, rusted and derelict trains, most (if not all) having been made in America in Philadelphia’s Baldwin Locomotive Works or the Vulcan Iron Works in Wilkes-Barre, PA.  After I spent a little while wandering around the yard the owner (or at least keeper) of the place turned up, a lovely old man who rents out the space not filled by trains for use as a car park.  The man (whose name I couldn’t quite understand) spoke no English but proceeded to show me around the yard pointing our the ages on the trains, most of them seemed to have been made around 1920 but one was as old as 1873.

Here are a handful of shots that I took in the yard…

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Top 5 Derelict Industrial Sites

Posted by sickbritain On September - 5 - 2009

Following up on my Top 10 Abandoned Asylums post I decided to start looking at other ‘genres’ of urban exploration, in this week’s post it’s going to be industrial sites.  When I started researching the list I had a few obvious sites in mind but for the rest it was really tough to build a good solid list, industrial urbex seems to be much more diverse and localised than asylums.  It seems that explorers will travel great distances to visit an abandoned asylum but there are seem to be enough derelict warehouses, mills, factories, etc. on a local basis so people tend to visit places close to their homes.

As before, I have selected a top ten list based on the number of Flickr photos I found for each site in a single search, doubtlessly I will have missed important sites and got the ranking wrong but please feel free to point them out by leaving a comment. All of the photos used below were taken by other photographers and are used under a Creative Commons license (click through to Flickr for attribution), if you think you’ve got a better photo and it’s not CC – get your licensing sorted!


1. Pyestock NGTE

2. Inverkip Power Station

3. Nottinghamshire Colliery Group

Annesley, Clipstone, Pleasley


4. Steetley Magnesite

5. Thorpe Marsh Power Station

Top 10 Abandoned Asylums

Posted by sickbritain On August - 19 - 2009

All over the UK dotted throughout countryside and city alike lie abandoned asylums, relics of a bygone era of mental health where the aim was to isolate patients in a secure facility rather than integrating them with the community. Here I have selected a top ten list based on the number of Flickr photos I found for each asylum in a single search, doubtlessly I will have missed important sites and got the ranking wrong but please feel free to point them out by leaving a comment. All of the photos used below were taken by other photographers and are used under a Creative Commons license (click through to Flickr for attribution), if you think you’ve got a better photo and it’s not CC – get your licensing sorted!


1. Hellingly
hellingly01

hellingly02

2. Cane Hill

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3. West Park

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4. Whittingham

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5. Severalls

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6. Denbigh

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7. Deva

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8. St Mary’s

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9. Talgarth

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10. St John’s

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stjohns02

 

 

Practical Photography Magazine Dereliction Special

Posted by thirtyfootscrew On August - 14 - 2009

For those of you that haven’t seen it yet the September issue of Practical Photography Magazine has a massive dereliction special spanning 30-odd pages in the issue, it’s packed full of tips for people new to urban exploration and for those of us that are experienced already it’s still an interesting read.  A handful of explorers from the urbex community have contributed articles including Paul Osborne (aka Compound Eye) and Elle Dunn.

The articles include quick tips, safety and legal advice, lighting, working with a model, light painting, photoshop tips and even a competition to win an Epson Stylus Photo 1400 A3+ printer by submitting ‘dereliction themed’ photos which should be quite easy for most of us!

Pick up the magazine now at all good stockists (I’ve always wanted to say that).

I Heart Street Art

Posted by sickbritain On July - 4 - 2009

It’s one of the many Marmite “Love it or Hate It” areas of the art world and a controvertial subject in the general public’s eye but I really do love graffiti, or to use it’s euphemistic moniker, street art. In the world of music I tend to like high-energy music (e.g. drum’n'bass, heavy metal) or songs where the lyrics really have something to say (e.g. rap, hip-hop) and the same can be said of the graffit world – I like a high visual impact or I like the graffiti to speak to me, to carry a message.

I’ve put together a few examples of graffiti that I found whilst grazing the pastures of Flickr, I guess you can’t start any post like this without really mentioning l’artiste du jour: Banksy. Not only is this piece very pretty it also carries with it a heavy social commentary as does much of his work, whist it’s instantly funny I feel a wave of sadness when I look at it – that feeling of our history being washed away…

That’s not to say that you have to be particularly arty to create work with humour and social commentary, there’s something about this piece that I really like even though there’s not a great deal to it…

Whilst it doesn’t carry any appreciable meaning I love aethetics of something like this…

The same goes for this more elaborate and colourful piece, I love it…

I’m not really convinced that this next one counts as Street Art since it was an installation in the Tate Modern but I think it shows what impact a piece of art can have when rendered on a large scale (something graffiti plays to significantly)…

Please don’t get any of my praise confused with tagging (i.e. single line drawn names – neither colourful or artful), the pointless scrawling of a name across a building or railway bridge does nothing for anyone. I’ve heard arguments that graffiti started out as tagging so we should think it’s OK but I don’t buy it, tagging is for wankers – pure and simple. The above examples all take thought and skill, that’s what makes it art to me and that’s what makes it awesome.

I heart street art.

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About Me

If youre into Urbex or youre trying to find out what its all about you may find yourself needing some help finding out about the art of Urban Exploration.  Here at Sick Britain Im planning to put up original content like my What is Urbex? and Urbex Safety articles as well as posting links to other community sites such as 28 Days Later or Derelicte.

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    Photos

    Warning...Remnants of the past.FactoryIMG_5418IMG_5416-2IMG_5416IMG_5405IMG_5387IMG_5379Lord Napier East LondonAlternative Architecture and Street Detail