Gimme Shelter


I am grateful that interesting old structures keep finding me! They call to me to stop and put my camera to work. It’s a way of documenting them before they are gone forever. And it’s fun! Over the years many of the subjects of my ‘Remnants & Remains’ captures have disappeared. I am glad I had a chance to add them to my collection. Other times places that have interested me are changed in a way that makes them less attractive. I find myself wishing I had photographed them when I had the chance. The lesson … stop and shoot … don’t wait! The following are finds that go back to early spring as well as more recent.

A portion of an Old West settlement acts as a frame for the ominous sky and mountain beyond.

‘Rustic Framing’ © Denise Bush
click here to view larger or order a print

Remains from a small, abandoned settlement demonstrate building with materials readily available.

‘Rocky Shelters’ © Denise Bush

An old log cabin falls apart amid new aspen trees in spring.

‘Open Door’ © Denise Bush

A barn no longer strong enough collapses under years of harsh winters and strong summer sun.

‘Collapsed’ © Denise Bush

An small tin cabin takes on character as it weathers years of seasonal elements.

‘Little Tin Cabin’ © Denise Bush

Structures from a time gone by show the effects of time and weather.

‘Door Number Two’ © Denise Bush

An abandoned church strikes a dramatic scene with storm clouds hovering above.

‘Church Without A Steeple’ © Denise Bush

See my entire ‘Remnants & Remains’ Collections HERE!
notecards, unframed, framed, canvas, acrylic & metal prints available

41 Responses to “Gimme Shelter”

  1. I have had the same experience as you with old remnants of structures. Some I passed by many times, thinking I should stop to photograph. But being in a hurry and/or not liking the light, I neglected to do so, only to find in a subsequent passing that the structure had fallen or been removed.

    There is a little primitive church, similar to the one in your “Church Without A Steeple”, that I’ve passed a number of times in Colorado, thinking I need to take time to photograph this treasure, when I’ve more time or when the light and sky are more appealing. I keep hoping that it will remain standing and I’ll eventually take the time to photograph it; but I never know when I will pass again. I hope that I do not procrastinate too long.

    That little church of yours, with the cloudy sky behind it, is my favorite of this collection.

    • Thanks Ken! Where is your church? Maybe it’s the same one?

      • Yes, it is the very same! I just viewed the church I see via Google Maps. The street view image compared to your photo shows exactly the same church! It has always been a bright, sunny and clear sky day near mid-day, when I’ve passed by. You have a wonderful sky above the church in your image. Even the Google Map Street View image has a cloudy sky overhead. I’m envious.

  2. I, too, have thought about the kind of reciprocal relationship you alluded to in your first sentence: do we find our subjects or do they find us? There have also been times when I’ve seen something interesting, told myself I’d stop on the way back, only to discovered later that things had changed and I’d lost the opportunity. Experiences of that sort have taught me not to pass anything by but to act on it immediately.

  3. 7 riet

    The gave something special to the landscape. I like them very much.

  4. 9 Bonnie

    Great finds!!

    • Thanks Bonnie! Brent was with me for the first 2 and last 2. I could have stayed all day at one of the places but have to compromise with him.

  5. Such interesting structures that tell a history of our past. I’m glad you are documenting them before they are gone. ‘Rustic Framing’ and ‘Rocky Shelters’ are my favs. Nice set, Denise!

  6. Great morning coffee images and blog to start my day off. Sometimes you just have to stop and smell the Roses-old wood-etc. Love these.

  7. 15 Ken Curtis

    Interesting images, Denise. I too enjoy shooting old abandoned structures, but am finding it harder and harder. Out here in New Jersey, the old stuff is being torn down and the land cleaned up. There are still a few standing and your advice to “If you see it, stop and shoot it.” is good.

    • I think I’ve found most close to home. Some of these were found on a little 2-day trip. Unlike Back East the structures are very simple making it easier for them to return to the earth. Keep exploring those back roads! Thanks for stopping in!

  8. Very Nice series of images! Enjoyed seeing them!

  9. hat lesson is so important. One thinks of these structures as being there “forever” but clearly that’s not the case. The rock shelter is so intriguing – that’s a fine photo. The black and white is, too – just simple and straightforward, with a touch of nobility, I think. “Door Number Two” is a super clever title. I like the way those buildings are up against that cliff. And the last photo is poignant, with that sliver of sky seen through the windows.

    • I hadn’t thought much about the sliver of light. Kind of wish I had explored that angle further (but Brent was waiting). There were also things in the background to hide which way or another. Thanks for letting me know what you notice!

  10. You are fortunate to have so many old abandoned structures to photograph, Denise. Of course they do represent someone’s misfortune but that is the way of life. Here in the Northeast we do have some abandoned old buildings but most don’t last as the lust for land and development or second homes make many disappear. I’ve photographed an old shed a short distance from my home. It’s a good thing I did not wait for just the right time, although the time was right for one, as it has now started its collapse…much like your “Collapsed”. It’s the last image in this post. I like the humor of “Door Number Two”. 🙂

    • From my perspective we don’t really have ‘many’ but I have searched out and found ‘many’! A lot of the places in my ‘Remnants & Remains’ collection are from Back East … from New England to South Carolina. The abandoned buildings in the East are much different than what I find here. Thanks so much for visiting and giving me your thoughts … they are valued!

  11. These are really cool finds! I like the church and the stone cabins a lot.

    There’s a cabin I’ve been meaning to stop and photograph for years. It’s getting more and more dilapidated with each passing year, and last year people stole boards that made up a whole side wall so it’s really looking beat up. I need to take your advice and stop!

  12. Each shot is stunning and shows your passion for these old buildings. 😊

  13. Usually, the only old relic I find in a landscape is myself. And I ain’t that old! 😉 I think a picture of one of your structures is more interesting. 🙂

  14. As always, you open yourself to the beauty around you and you interpret it for those of us who only dream of that beauty. I love Rustic Framing, Rock Shelters, and oh, the sky in Church w/o Steeple!

    • Thanks very much Linda! With very little social activity photography and chores around the house are how I pass my time. The photography is much more enjoyable!!!

  15. If there is one lesson I have learned about photography it is not to postpone any photographing. If you see something, it’s now, stop and photograph as you point out. As always great images, Denise. Those old structures and buildings all tell their own story,.

    • Even knowing this I sometimes make the mistake of passing by subjects and scenes that interest me. It’s often an effort to find a place to pull over and turn around here. When I set out for a particular place I tell myself to stop and explore whatever I see, even if it isn’t part of the agenda … but I don’t always listen to myself either! 😀

  16. A wonderful set, Denise! These old structures spark curiosity and sadness at the same time.

  17. What treasures these old buildings are, Denise, and you’ve photographed them beautifully. The crisp frame within a frame lead photo is interesting, the stone buildings surprising and I love the black and white with its old timey feel. 😀

  18. I love old buildings. I’m glad you could” save” them in photos. I liked “Rocky Shelters” and “Door Number Two”.

  19. I love capturing old structures like this!! The way you frame them creates a story and you do it beautifully!!

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