Just about a year ago this month I took my first trip to Detroit to explore it’s ruins. It was something I had always wanted to do but I was afraid to do it on my own. Some friends of mine Eric Tillman, Alanna St.Laurent, and Jesse Welter started a Meetup group called Motor City Photograpy Workshops http://www.meetup.com/Motor-City-Photo-Workshops/ They offer workshops that take you into the many abandoned buildings in Detroit. After my first workshop I was hooked and am pretty much addicted to photographing abandoned buildings now. Each trip is a new adventure and I am learning so much about the history of this city I love. I am over and over again astonished at what is left behind in these buildings to rot and decay. Gym floors that could have been salvaged to floor your house. Beautiful decorative tilework that anyone would be proud to have in their home. Then there are the books, musical instruments, beautiful oak woodwork, desks, etc. All of which is just destroyed when the buildings are torn down. I can’t believe that there aren’t salvage companies to save these beautiful items. During one trip we took there was a fellow from London with us, he now lives here in Michigan. He commented that he was going home for a visit eo England. When I asked him if he was going to explore abandoned buildings when he got home, he looked at me in astonishment and said “We don’t have buildings like these at home in England, every building that lose’s it’s occupant is picked up refurbished and reopened by someone else, we just don’t have the problem that you have here”. If only the people in Detroit had the same mindset our city would look much different. However this does seems to be a problem across the whole of the United States and not just in Detroit.
This is my first post of many on my updated website by Jerry Roek. I’ve been a SmugMug member for many years. Actually last year I was lucky enough to win a free year of hosting through them by winning a photography contest that the Detroit SmugMug group sponsored. My first website I did myself and it wasn’t very professional looking. Jerry has brought my website up to that level, thank you Jerry!
I’ll tell you a funny story about how this all came about. In November I joined the Art Is In Market at Partridge Creek in Clinton Twp. Michigan. I have a display of my photography there. I have been printing out my photos on 20×30 poster paper at Costco and then taking it to Fedex to cut out (Thanks Alanna St. Laurent and Jesse Welter for the tip I learned at their selling at Art Fairs Workshop they had in 2012 through Motor City Photography Workshops a Meetup Group). I was at the Fedex on Garfield in Sterling Heights cutting out my photos but who comes up and talks to me but this guy in a SmugMug baseball cap. He introduces himself, it’s Jerry! I’ve talked with him online but never in person. Jerry told me about his business of setting of websites and here we are! I didn’t know how to set up a blog and Jerry pointed me here to WordPress.com to start.
I hope you will enjoy my blog and my adventures in photography with me!