Buildings and symbolism

by Lucas Westcoat January. 31, 2017 1240 views

I've always felt that the most interesting and dynamic subject to photograph is a person. As people, we are naturally drawn to faces because most of us have an innate ability to read them and decipher a great deal of information. Furrowed brow shows intensity of either anger, frustration, or focus. Combine that with tightened lips and a clenched jaw and all of a sudden, we can easily deduce anger. I love that this happens without us even knowing it.

Buildings can also convey instantaneous meaning. Certain buildings are, in themselves, a symbol of something. That meaning may change as the social, economic, or political climate changes, but their significance doesn't. They remain a lightening rod for meaning. What meaning/feeling do you interpret from the below images?

The Forbidden City. Beijing, China

This was taken within the Forbidden City on a trip to Beijing a few years ago. The city is big on symmetry but there's something dark about it. It's beautiful, don't get me wrong, but I had a sort of eerie feeling while exploring it. This shot is almost symmetrical, there are only a couple asymmetrical elements and one of them is the focus.

An interior square in Barcelona, Spain

When I saw these little Windows facing one another and separated by a tiny little square, I wondered what this does for the sense of community in this building. Is it like Alfred Hitchcock's "Rear Windows" or do the curtains largely remain drawn. The color and light on the building was also attractive to me.

The Capitol Building in Washington D.C.

This shot was taken late in the day in Washington D.C. but it almost looked like sunrise. I liked this, because the building holds so much meaning and the sun offers one a sense of dread or hopefulness, depending on your perspective.

To see more of my photos you can check out my website at or follow me on Instagram @elldubphoto

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There are 7 comments , add yours!
George C 6 months, 2 weeks ago

#1great- one ! 
Thank you for favorited one of mine.

6 months, 2 weeks ago Edited
Emmanuel 1 year, 4 months ago

well done man. :)

1 year, 4 months ago Edited
Amy Daniels 1 year, 4 months ago

Congratulations different perspectives of the world

1 year, 4 months ago Edited
Ivan Steenkamp 1 year, 4 months ago

Well done!

1 year, 4 months ago Edited
Becky Brannon 1 year, 4 months ago

Congratulation on the Weekly Theme! A wonderful set!

1 year, 4 months ago Edited
Helen Hooker 1 year, 4 months ago

These are fascinating. No.1 tells such a story - I can sense the chap in the wheelchair looking at that steep slope and wondering if he can negotiate it successfully. The way No.2 looks up to the light is beautiful - I can feel myself being led upwards to that warmth. No.3 is an interesting mix - a dark, serious building but you can feel the warmth and light beyond. Beautiful.

1 year, 4 months ago Edited
Katie R 1 year, 4 months ago

I love #1. The figure makes all the difference

1 year, 4 months ago Edited