If I happen to get a spare moment to dedicate a few hours to random “found” photography, my go to location in the area is always Downtown Lancaster. It’s what I like to call a “target-rich environment.” It covers a lot of areas I like to shoot including food (at Central Market), people (there’s always characters hanging around in the city somewhere), and decay.
I certainly subscribe to the theory that Lancaster City is on the upswing with its exploding arts and culture scene, growing small business environment, and gleaming new structures. And to be sure, there is a lot of charm in the older architecture that dominates the city (mostly because it missed the ugly revitalization efforts of the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s.) Unfortunately, there are some pitfalls to having a fair amount of aging buildings throughout the city. For every grand new retro-fit, there is a crumbling brick wall in an alley. For every Gallery Row, there is an abandoned auto body shop.
Not that I mind. I’m drawn to the nooks and crannies. The textures, colors, and details of decay, rust, and deteriorating brick stand out to me more than some of the shiny new facades. There’s a compelling narrative in something that’s obviously seen the passage of time. The imperfections are just details in a story you haven’t heard yet.