Sunday, August 11, 2013

Raleigh at Dusk.

Raleigh has a wonderful vibe today compared with 10 years ago.  I can remember riding through downtown on Sunday mornings with Raleigh's assistant manager and talking about the changes that were coming.  It was at a time when condo's were being built at a frantic pace.  A college classmate Greg Hatem had started buying up old warehouse spaces and had started renovating them into offices and restaurants.  Fayetteville street had reopened to traffic and businesses were starting to move into downtown.  When I first opened my studio on St. Mary's street in 1993, Raleigh's downtown was still pretty dead.  The Glenwood South district didn't even exist at that time.  By the time we sold our building in 2005, Glenwood South was firmly much so we could hear the music and general rowdiness at night if we were working late two blocks off Glenwood Ave.
City Market had an English Pub and Brewery called Greenshields, but that was about it. Eventually Moore square and the rest of City Market filled in with more upscale and trendy establishments.
Ten years ago, I never felt that comfortable walking around downtown at night.  Today, it has a whole different feel.  I've been out shooting for a client recently that is wanting huge canvas prints of downtown.  As I walk around after dark, I am rarely by myself.  There is plenty of activity even during the week.  It's been fun getting reacquainted with Raleigh night life...and have made a few nice images at the same time.  Of course not all these are from downtown.  I have included the James Hunt Library as well.  The last image though is a reminder that although Raleigh is a vibrant community, there are still the homeless and less advantaged that reside just off the main drag.  I'm thankful to this day that I am not homeless and have a passion for my work that keeps me clothed and fed... maybe not enough for a penthouse apartment, but a home with a roof none the less.

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