Architecture, exhibitions, Melbourne, Photography

Decay on a Local Scale

After yesterdays post, I thought, what can I possibly put up today.  I was amazed at the response to the post, but in a really good way.  It was wonderful to find so many kindred spirits out there.  So, after thinking about it, I felt I had no choice, but to revisit another place.

Please Use a Different Entrance, This One is BlockedIt seemed only appropriate to go back to the photos I took of Larundel Mental Asylum and do some more images from it.  So here are another two.

The above image is what used to be the main building, I believe.  It looks like the one you would first drive up to.  I also think it may have been the building my friend was in when she was a patient there.  It looks like there has been a fire inside.

The image is a HDR image processed in Photomatix Pro.  The new one is similar to the older version, though I quite like the layout a little more in the new version.  The image was then processed in Camera Raw and I added only one blur layer really and played with the light.  The sky is pretty amazing, I didn’t do anything to that, well other than the gradient.  I enjoy playing with the light.

Seeing Through the RoofThis is in the same space as the other image I showed you a few weeks ago.  I think this one shows the state of the inside with some suggestion for what the place would have been like.  The windows are wonderful, I love windows like that.

When processing this image, I wanted to draw out the decay that is happening.  I couldn’t do anything about the graffiti, so I tried to blur it out more so it wouldn’t stand out so much.  Again, this image is also a HDR processed with Photomatix Pro.

I was going to try the images in Silver Efex and Color Efex, but time has got away from me today.  I ended up going to see an exhibition in Ivanhoe that is part of a new art gallery space in my local council, Banyule.  So I am running behind today.


I have a couple of articles you might be interested in.  They both affect us as photographers and artists.  I don’t know how they are going to affect us, but we should know about these.

UK.Gov passes Instagram Act: All your pics belong to everyone now

Adobe kills Creative Suite, goes subscription-only

Both very interesting.


  1. Oh what really sad memories these pictures evoked,my mother was a patient many times in here,my childhood scattered with mixed emotions over the building.I remember the last time i walked into this building was with my hubby and first born he was only one i think so 29 years ago,the patients aimlessly walking around dazed,drugged and vocal…the state it is in now realistically to me is no more of fright as it was then.Sadly now this is not even an option for the mentally ill and the consequences are dire. How this has made me think….nut that is what pictures are for,evoking emotions good or bad..buildings hold more than people they hold on to the past so to capture them is a wonderful thing.

    • What a great comment, you are so right about the feelings it evokes. I have to say I think at least while we had places like this, though not ideal, at least there was some where, now there seems nothing for them. I know someone’s whose daughter has been with the adolescent Mental health unit and now she needs to go into the adult section, and even the people at the adolescent place are looking for alternatives, because she will get lost and not get the care she needs. It is very grim.
      Yes, they are, they are very good for evoking emotions, I hope I have done that. Thanks

      • Hope your friend gets somewhere..i have been battling the system over my mum for all my adult life nothing has changed..but thanks for the pics,it’s good to remember how we have felt,how we have changed and how we want to be :)

  2. barbmca says

    Amazing we hear a lot about what is going on in America. Your work is amazing

  3. I think the graffiti adds to the eeriness of the place. Awesome shots :)

    • Yes, perhaps, but I didn’t want the image to be about the graffiti, though you can still see it. Thanks Carrie.

  4. Decaying, abandoned buildings usually make great subjects for photos… great photos like yours capture the beauty that still remains, and, even captures the spirits of the building… nice photos yesterday, and today.

    • Thanks John, They are very silent images, no one is talking any more. I hope people can still the beauty in them.

  5. Thanks for the copyright article, Leanne. Do you think we have to delete our posts after, let’s say, 24 hours of publication? The article doesn’t seem to include the name you imbed in your photos, only a registration of each work will be considered protection. Besides, we all know that it is almost impossible to pursue a claim of copyright through the international court system.

    • I don’t know orb, it is going to be interesting. What exactly is a orphan photo and surely if there is a watermark with who the owner is, you would think would be enough.
      I can’t seem them getting away with it, it is stealing and I am sure many art organisations will jump on the band wagon about it. Basically, if it is like it says, then no one will be safe putting images on the internet, and that will destroy a lot of things. Interesting. I think your last statement is dead on.

  6. Great shots, very interesting and sad. The articles are very good to know. Thanks for posting them.

  7. silentwonderland says

    So many character in these photos.. Great job..

  8. enjoyed looking at ’em…I even went wandering myself and snapped some shots from the old mill where I was working… iphones gotta luv em!

  9. The colors are amazing and I love the dramatic effect of the sky. Great theme too! There is something about run-down and abandoned buildings, isn’t there? The delight to any attentive photographer :) You gave me the itch to follow up on these theme too. There are so many (unfortunately) abandoned building in Lisbon – time for a city trek!! Thanks for sharing!

    • Yes, it sounds like it is time a trek. Thank you, and yes, so many of us love these old abandoned buildings. They are wonderful

  10. So, according to the link you posted, I need to remove all of my photos from Instagram and my website too.

    • I don’t know John, I think it might be a wait and see, I think they need to give more information, they can’t simply mean that every image needs to be registered. I think if they did that, then the internet will become a very place. Think of the implications, newspapers, magazines, blogs, etc, I would be more concerned with places like instagram, and facebook.

  11. You have a real talent for the moody photograph. Very nice. Both of your links are a bummer. As much as I hate to say it, perhaps it’s time to start shopping for alternatives to Adobe products.

    • Yes, I’ve been thinking the same, I’ve been thinking about looking at Capture one, a lot of people talk about it, could be good to check out. The money Adobe want is ridiculous really.
      Thanks for the great words about my work, that is fantastic.

  12. Awesome, I too love old windows and am a sucker for them. I have too many in my collection and use them to frame photographs!

  13. What a bad news on the Instagram act. I already knew about Facebook expropriating the creators by their (usualy unread) terms of business. But this is worse. Thanks for sharing.

    • I think facebook tried it, but then when so many people deleted their instagram accounts they back pedaled and said they wouldn’t do that. There seems to be some impression that if you put your photos on facebook then they own them, but I’ve been right through their terms and conditions and can’t find anything, it tells me that I own all my images. So I don’t know if I have missed something, or misunderstood it. What the UK are doing is even more worrying, I don’t really know what it means, but we will have to wait and see. They need to define Orphan image, and can they do this to all images, surely my images are covered by the copyright laws in Australia? The internet is international, so I don’t know. It is scary.

  14. Some nice photos on the subject of decline and decay. I am going to have to get out and visit a few places locally soon and share on my new photoblog.

    Thanks too for the very informative link to news of the recent dramatic change to UK copyright law – I hadn’t heard anything about that at all, and I am attentive to such legal changes, they kept it very quiet. :mad: And the Adobe news means that in future Photoshop is going to be out of reach for photographers on a budget, like students.

    • Thank you, they are always interesting to photograph.
      My husband sent that too me, so not sure where he found it.
      The adobe thing is going to be interesting. They have student or education versions now, so what happens if you are a student, will they still have that? The other thing that seems clear is that when you stop paying the monthly amount then you stop getting it and you won’t be able to use it anymore. So you won’t own it anymore, that sucks big time, so you can only use the software when you have the money too, which means, a lot of people won’t do it, because it is a lot of money. I wonder whether Adobe just think they are so good that everyone will just do it. They might be opening the door for a lot of other companies to walk right in. I am going to be checking out Capture One.

  15. Leanne, this is the first time .. I think the shots are far too dark – they are very dramatic – and there is something threatening about them.

  16. As I scroll down my reader page I always know it’s your photography before I see the text.

  17. The sky befits what the building once was. A very powerful image.

    The revised UK copyright law will simply expand the use of watermarks. When Instagram tried to revise their ToS regarding photowork ownership and intellectual property rights, it raised serious hackles (and heckles) here in the US. And, Adobe’s Creative Cloud – when that came online, you knew CS’ days were numbered.

    • Thank you David, I was so happy when I saw that sky.

      I am hoping you are right, surely if you watermark your images you are stating that they belong to someone. Time will tell, I can’t see it really happening too much, surely.
      I had heard of the Creative Cloud, but didn’t pay much attention. I suspect Adobe are going to lose a lot of customers over this, they will be holding us to ransom basically, either you keep paying or you can’t keep using. Mmm, I’m going to check out Capture One’s software and see what it is like.

  18. Great shots, Leanne! I just read the first article – unbelievable! Well, not really, I guess – we have one of the worst governments in living memory – so bad that the far right are gaining ground.

    • Thank you Richard,
      That is too funny, is it the labour government? Our labour government is more liberal than the liberal government. My husband reckons it is because the laws favour big business and big business need to make even more money and the government has to make sure that keeps happening. WE are slowly going back to the world that was around before the industrial revolution, the rich and the poor. Sad really.

  19. I love your urban exploring. How I would love to go and visit these old buildings with you. Interesting article on Instagram. I knew that was coming down the road and thus only put silly stupid shots on there.

    • I would love it if you could come with me, how wonderful.
      It is interesting, and will it only be instagram, or will it include other things as well. I am the same, I only put crap photos, or rather photos I don’t really care about up, on that and facebook.

    • I think that happens with a lot of people, there seem to be many mixed feelings about this place. Thanks

  20. you have done the asylum justice Leanne…you’ve shown the decay, while allowing the character of the building to show through…amazing photos, I’ll check out the links you posted.

  21. I truly do not understand why, Leanne, places such as Larundel are abandoned, and left to be destroyed by vandals. The same thing happens here in the USA. Google “Detroit” images and you’ll find a spectacular amount of abandonment done by a once glorious center of automobile production in the States. I have also been in some abandoned buildings here in Chicago…not a pretty sight at all, and many still stand. My Opinion: Either renovate the building, if possible, or tear it down!

    It is fascinating, though, to see how quickly Nature rebounds and takes over…peeling paint and wallpaper, mold, rotting wood, falling plaster, etc.

    I did notice the Adobe article…and am not very happy about the switch. Time will tell if this is a good move for them to make.

    • I have to agree, I think the problem here is that they had plans, but there were so many buildings that by the time they get to them the vandals have already got in. It is sad though, it would cost too much to restore them now, I suspect they will be just pulled down at some point.

      I can’t see a lot of people going with it, it is a lot of money to fork out. Part of the problem becomes to, is will they keep the product good, or will they care less, once people are in, it will be hard to leave, because it won’t matter how much money you have put it, when you leave, you will leave with nothing. Might be time to check out some other software.

      • I surely am going to check out others, because I want more from Adobe, but will not be able to afford monthly fees. I really think they’re being a bit greedy…and that’s NOT a good thing at all!

      • Take a look at Capture One, I think they are called, there is a lot of talk about them, they might be a good alternative. I think you are right about Adobe, people don’t really like paying out money for nothing, it is a new concept and if people go along with it, it will start happening with everything. Not to be put up with.

  22. It’s more than “interesting” Leanne! As far as the first is concerned, I guess I’ll start splashing a watermark across everything (as you already do). As far as the second is concerned, I’d urge everyone to go to Gimp and stuff Adobe!

    • It is going to be interesting to see what happens. I want to know what they define as an orphan image.
      I feel a bit the same about Adobe, I am going to try some other software, see what happens. I wonder if Adobe will back down.

  23. I’ve been to Larundel a number of times (there are quite a few photos on my blog), very sad that it was not looked after following it’s closure. And very sad about the many patients who were left homeless and without care after it closed. Great photos.

    • It is disgusting really, that it was just closed like that, and then left, then again, maybe it is a reflection on what our government thinks of the people who were in it. It is very sad, and makes me really angry what has happened. Thank you.

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