Tree stump at the former Willows Garden Centre, Westhay; 30 Mar 2005.
Taken back in the days before Somerset County Council decided to gentrify an alive and characterful garden centre, with a truly excellent café and lots of local produce and crafts for sale – to turn it into an arts and crafts gallery with a truly indifferent snack bar alongside – one of the few local eateries, I must add, that has succeeded in upsetting my normally cast iron guts!
How I abhor gentrification and prettification, I prefer things as they really are, not as others think they ought to be – and I’ve read in a couple of places now that even characterful New York is succumbing to this bland, mind-numbing, modern trend – I’ve found one of these quotes but the other eludes me – “So much of New York’s important, if at times sleazy, atmosphere has been replaced with generic cafes and organic food shops – telling of our times”. Does anyone think to the contrary?
Anyway, this picture – a lump of old wood lying on the old garden centre’s floor, and being young in those days I did things right, hoisting the really quite weighty Zuiko telephoto up onto a tripod, using a cable release, etc, etc – but couldn’t resist having the Velvia colour slide film push processed by +1EV to skew the colours a bit >>> I bet there are landscape photographers out there, reading this, who have gone pale at the thought of such tampering with this most sacred of all landscape films – haha! I’m nothing if not irreverent … and irrelevant too … before you enquire …
And finding this image again, after all these years, I’m drawn to the curving, swirling textures in the wood, something of beauty in something no longer living – though whether whatever is alive in trees ever really dies is something that some I know, including myself, might feel inclined to question.
OM-4 with 300mm Zuiko; tripod; cable release; Fuji Velvia 50 colour slide, rated at 100 ISO; Color Efex Pro 4.