Friday, May 22, 2009

Contrasting Realities Under a Picture-book Sky

This is not the typical view of Northfield, Minnesota, which would make most people who have been here think of college architecture, a historic main street dating to the second half of the 19th century, and pleasantly varied houses on tree-lined streets where in many cases there are no longer any above-ground utility lines. I find the little touch of urbanism above interesting and rather endearing: the telephone or power lines; the unadorned flat faces of the rear apartments; the absence of green; the little hint of Europe (somehow I imagine Marseilles) in the balcony with the yellow backdrop. This is the view not meant to be seen.

Stepping back and swinging the camera a few degrees to the left, this is the public counterpart to the same location: the graceful mature tree (I'm guessing an elm, by its shape, but perhaps a cottonwood) framing the stately post office whose parking lot opens the way to the view seen above; the old-fashioned street lamps; the hint of the public square beyond.

The contrasts intrigue me.

See more Skywatch photos from around the world here.


Jim H. said...


Perspective. Point oif view. Juxtaposition. Contrast. These two photos have it all!

Very nice.

Linnea W said...

That sky is terrific and I like the lighting you took the top one in...those must be the backsides of those "other" buildings you're describing...

bookbabie said...

I agree, it's good to look around the corner and find the unexpected shots, those are usually the best!

Russ said...

Very nice - it does look very European.

J Bar said...

Sydney - City and Suburbs