The city is a fantastic source of beauty and inspiration, with all the glitz and glamor glistening beneath the city lights. But there is another side of the city altogether, one rife with its own kind of allure. Across the tracks, away from the dazzle of downtown, lies a darker imagination, this one looking to grunge-ridden, dilapidated architecture for inspiration.
There is a beauty that pervades this kind of urban decay and captured wonderfully through a photographer’s well-trained eye. These industrial city scenes are wonderfully dark and offer a glimpse of the weathered face beneath the city facade.
In this inspirational installment, we take a tour and show the charm of a more neglected and worn side of the city. We showcase the beauty of urban decay, a series of photos of this eroded elegance that photographers have captured brilliantly. These gorgeously grungy images have a haunting appeal, a stirring quality that radiates from within and that earned them a spot on this list.
Further Reading on SmashingMag:
- The Beauty Of Street Photography
- 35 Examples Of Beautiful City Photography
- 60 Stunning Underwater Photos
- 35 Beautiful Examples Of Rain Photography
- 45 Beautiful Motion Blur Photos
35 Beautiful Examples Of Urban Decay Photography
phill.d “It never ceases to amaze me the different colors and effects you can achieve in a boring concrete R.C.P drain.”
Magnus Lindqvist “Your Worst Nightmare”. “This is a bit different from what I normally shoot. I had this shot in my head for a very long time but it wasn’t until last weekend I finally shot it. The only light source is a shop light behind the door. The place is very narrow and kind of creepy. I had to make sure that the door behind me stayed open or it would have locked me in.” Lexington, Kentucky.
pippyzz Fuckin’ days.
Escapista That Train Don’t Stop Here Any More.
fotografie.berlin “This Picture is not photoshopped. It’s real. Don’t really know how and why they made it.”
GraemeNicol American Dollar.
Mr. Mark Classic Blues in Cuba.
Shifted*Exposure Sun Beam.
stOOpidgErL “Where Was God That Night”
photosecosse Nevada City, Cart and Cabin, Ghost Town, Montana, USA.
Jano De Cesare Corner mood. A corner in an abandoned asylum in Pistoia, Tuscany.
picaddict Highgate Cemetery West London. This beautiful statue lying there as if it would be alive had to be covered with branches. (a wish of the the relatives) but the guide was so kind to clear the grave a little bit for us. I have never seen before in my life such a beautiful touching statue…
tofu_minx Salton Sea - Bombay Beach - Broken Solitude.
anacm.silva Aldeia de Mora - Vimioso, Portugal.
bsidez Years of decay.
Darwin Bell Rusty but proud.
DanielKHC “Tyersall House”.
stephmel “The Lonely Steps”.
scottnj Curtains, a tattered old curtain hangs through the broken panes of glass in this abandoned old house.
inesbexiga Door, Sobral de Monte Agraço - Portugal.
Wolfgang Staudt Decay - the door in a hospital, Saarbruecken, Germany.
sheke1 “Somebody’s Bad Luck”
Ride My Pony Corner Desk.
sheke1 Bells Piano.
bsidez La Chartreuse. It’s a beautiful abandoned fortress in Liege, Belgium.
phill.d “It never ceases to amaze me the different colours and effects you can achieve in a boring concrete R.C.P drain.”
Pavel Horak Industrial Documentary: The Stain.
Timothy Neesam “Broadway”.
briantmurphy “You are beautiful”. This building is just a mile or so from downtown New Orleans, on the bank of the Mississippi.
Gundross ” Postindustrial beauty”
A.Guandalini Inside an abandoned country house, behind closed windows.
Eric Matthew Gustafson “Steel Office”
Dan Dumitriu “Post-modern burial”
Serret “levels of initiation”
For the last click, we present the image that got this entire ball of inspiration rolling. “A Moment Suspended In Time” was the picture we found that sparked this whole showcase being put together.
Marcin Stawiarz “A Moment Suspended In Time”
Sources and Resources
- Decayed Yet Haunting Beautiful Flickr Pool
- Urban Decay Flickr Pool
- Industrial Decay
- Urban Exploration
- Some Urban Decay Flickr Pool
- Abandoned Flickr Pool
- Urban and Rural Photography on Deviant Art
- Urban LIFE in Metropolis Flickr Group