For the first time ever, a public exhibition of images from the
Railyard as it is today. Exhibition Dates: Sept. 15-Nov. 14, 2011 At the Kimo Theater Gallery 423 Central Ave. NW
Albuquerque, NM Gallery Hours can be found listed on the Kimo Gallery site (505) 768-3522 (for gallery info)
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Monday, June 20, 2011

My History with the railyard

I stumbled across the buildings when I took a wrong turn from downtown sometime around 1994. As the grandson of a southwest historian, and a photographer, they struck me as a very neat place full of untold history. At the time the lots and even the buildings were visibly full of spare parts, and scrap, and all sorts of junkyard stuff.

I was quite scared of the neighborhood though, as a teenage Caucasian kid, we were always told it was a "rough part of town" and indeed my 2nd trek out to find the railyards had me driving At night under the coal bridge on 1st, and I kid you not! Two guys were having a knife fight in front of the Madrid Lounge, and there was a old console tv cabinet on fire off to the edge of the road. I was pretty sure that was going to be the last thing I did see.

Took me 2 years to go back, by then I was older, bolder, and knew more about the neighborhood. (My mother had started working in nonprofit program not far from there, and I think things were turning around.) And it helped that I brought a few friends. We explored it a bit, never once damaged it, used downed fences, and open doors, it was very cool, because it was like a time capsule, although still frightening because there were homeless people living there.

I had let my photography hobby dwindle, and my grandfather had passed away long before I found the place, he would have had so much to say about its history. So i have no good record of any of those visits.

I Re-picked up a camera again in 2005 when i got my first digital. I was still not a fully a shutterbug yet, but by 2007 that all changed. I got from a client a better than average "prosumer" level olympus digital with 100's of manual settings, so i decided i had to go out and photograph something every weekend just to learn all the settings. (and to scratch the exploring bug that i had).

By 2008 I had upgraded cameras a few times, I still have never made the big plunge into totally pro level camera/lenses, but I do like to push what I have to the max! I was already doing a lot of "Urbex" exploring and really wanting to shoot the railyards again. when I found a local group of Flickr fans, who had spotted an opening. So I jumped at the chance! I was glad I did. being there in full daylight, was like walking into a cathedral. I was instantly in love allover again!

Ive been back every chance I can, these days I'm glad to say I mostly get to document them by permission, although getting permission has gotten harder and harder, as the movies have it sewn up more and more, and the Albuquerque studios folks have decided they wont take our cash to rent the place unless we are a bigwig movie company.

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