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Old Navy Base

When I was a little girl, I always wondered what it might be like to be someone else, live in their homes, feel what they feel, live their lives. I still do this now, and I think it helps me to relate to people much more. I found this quote today and that sums it up:

Could a greater miracle take place than for us to look through each other’s eye for an instant? Henry David Thoreau

Last summer, I shot a wedding for my (now) friends Jay & Kristen. It never fails with me that at the end of the night, when people are leaving I always end up having some sort of conversation with a guest as I pack up my equipment. A cool and friendly fellow by the name of Peter, introduced himself and talked to me a little about photography. He was in search of someone to come out and photograph some of the old buildings out at the closed down naval base, and asked me if I was interested. I didn’t even have to think about it! “UM, YES AND YES!” I said.

I personally love to do anything different, love details, architecture, and on top of that, anything OLD with a history. I knew those buildings hadn’t been used for years and years. I think maybe 1996 was the last time anyone was working there.

So Peter and I met out at the buildings and we walked through. Bear in mind this was in the heat of last summer (do you remember this?). Probably the hottest summer I’ve ever experienced here. As we walked through I was seriously BEAMING with excitement, but also at the same time feeling overwhelmed by the idea….where would I even start? These buildings are HUGE. The point of doing this shoot was one, for history’s sake before the structures were gone, and two, for artwork inside the new buildings.

So, we planned some dates for it and it was set. I spent hours and hours shooting and ended up having to split the days up to go back. If I can describe the experience….It was blazing hot, there was a stench of the old chemicals, spiderwebs, peeling paint, dark hallways and rooms(super creepy sometimes by the way!!), and just rotten and musty remnants of buildings that definitely needed to go. BUT….I LOVED IT. I was so inspired! I imagined what it must have been like to work there, what happened to these guys that were there every day, what they talked about, what the mood was like. I’d come across some really awesome piece of machinery or structure and just stand there and stare at it. When you are shooting something like this, you want it to be exactly how you see it and feel it. Thankfully, Peter gave me the liberty of really taking my time with editing. I definitely needed it!!! It was the same thing….Editing the images to give a viewer a “feeling.”

So here you go! I am so excited to share these. I hope this inspires you to get out and shoot something totally different than what you are used to. Trust me, it’s the best thing you could do for yourself as an artist. Open your mind, heart and let go.

  • Harmony - Oh my goodness Juliet, I can see in your artwork how honored you were to be asked to do this project. Your attention to detail and ability to bring out the beauty in what remains is astounding!!

  • Biz - you’re freaking AWESOME! i love these!

  • Angie - I posted to FB before reading Harmony’s comment…I agree with attention to detail and beauty…those were defintely the first words to come to my mind when I saw these. Beautiful!