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Leland Kent p3

Photographer and author of books like Abandoned Birmingham and Abandoned Georgia, and creator of abandonedsoutheast.com, Leland Kent talks about his approach to taking photos in abandoned places… 

READERSVOICE.COM: Do you find some scenes disturbing? Or do you just try to shut it out and concentrate on taking good photos, like the table bending under the weight of the microscopes in the Charity Hospital?

LELAND KENT: The only really disturbing place I would say would be Memorial Mound where the bodies were left behind. That was tough to see in person. Some of that stuff like that table with the microscopes just amazes me. A lot of the things you see just don’t happen overnight, like that table bending. That was taken 10 years after Charity closed. You don’t see that sort of thing every day.

RV: I found the lighting interesting in the photo of the empty chairs coming out of the darkness in the assembly hall in the New Orleans school. And the colors in the control room looking over the Koppers-Becker coke ovens. And the lines and patterns in the Market Street Power Plant in New Orleans were interesting. What do you look for in a photo? Emotion, historical record, or do you just go by instinct?

LK: I really just go by what catches my eye. As I am exploring and walking through a new place I may stop and take a photo of what I think is interesting and would help tell a story. My goal is for others to see what I see through my lens.

RV: The dolls on the lounge chair in the Little House is a striking image. And the empty chairs in the school hall in New Orleans. Are there particular photos that a lot of people seem to comment on for being particularly striking images for them?

LK: I can’t think of one particular image but since the New Orleans book has been released, a lot of people who worked at Charity have told me how amazed they are by the images from inside the hospital.

RV: How many locations are you eager to still visit, and what states or countries are the

LK: I still have a lot to cover in the Southeastern United States. As for bucket list spots – One day, I would like to visit Italy as well as some other European countries.

-See abandonedsoutheast.com and Leland Kent’s books of photographs like Abandoned New Orleans and Abandoned Georgia.

-copyright readersvoice.com.