The web site, Art of Geography, defines sense of place as “a combination of characteristics that makes a place special and unique. Sense of place involves the human experience in a landscape, the local knowledge and folklore. Sense of place also grows from identifying oneself in relation to a particular piece of land on the surface of planet Earth.”
I have been thinking about how I could display a “sense of place” about where I live and spend most of my time … in Homewood at Plum Creek and around Hanover, PA. Over the past years I have been taking pictures of all aspects of Homewood, but I never thought too much about displaying a sense of this place.
To really show the sense of this place I would need to show you the people. It is really the people who make this place what it is. Fortunately, we have several local publications which do a great job of showing it to our residents; but for privacy concerns, I don’t show many pictures of the people on this blog.
I am currently taking lots of pictures of the people as they engage in the many activities. In the past month I took over 400 pictures which I hope to edit down into another internal view of the people enjoying the activities. I might even make a book of them. That takes a lot of my time and I have slacked off on taking pictures for my blog, but I haven’t liked that; therefore, I am trying to get back to posting as frequently as I can.
If I am going to get back to taking more pictures like I did a couple of years ago, I would like a theme to guide me as I look for images. Since what I have available to photograph is the same as I have always had since living here, I expect that I will be photographing the same things as I did before. In one sense that isn’t too bad since I realize that many living here haven’t seen them. We have a relatively large turnover, but not because folks wish to leave.
As a guide to my looking for images, as well as how to process and display them, I am going to try to concentrate on how to display a sense of this place; but it is not a straightforward thing to do. One reason is that it is, to a large extent, a function of one’s personal perspective, and I can only show my perspective. In addition, the sense of a place is a changing thing, even assuming that I know how to display it, and I will be experimenting and changing as I go.
I am always looking for ways to show the common in an uncommon way as a reminder that we all don’t see or think the same. In addition, little is black or white, there are always some shades of gray somewhere even if we are talking about politics, parties, candidates, etc. Some are just darker than others.
I made these images down alongside Plum Tree Lane across from the side of the Farm House while two ambulances and at least three cars with nurses were running back and forth. Bad day for some. Since it was hot and humid already, I thought that I would at least cool down these images.
Just a thought, but it would make all of our hospital trips go quicker, and maybe reduce the costs a little, if they replaced those plastic arm bracelets we get each time with a tattoo. It would also mean that we wouldn’t have to carry around identification in our wallets just in case we are found lying on the sidewalk someday and hauled away to the ER. No, I didn’t have an emergency. I was just having some routine tests.
There are some aspects of aging that many do not plan on, such as the increasing amount of time that they spend on doctor’s visits, lab tests, trips to hospitals, and then recovering. These activities then decrease the available time one has for traveling, hobbies such as photography, etc. Most would classify those aspects as negative; but they also create positive aspects such as the opportunities to see all of the young, smiling, energetic nurses and technicians in the medical facilities.