Detroit by Neighborhood: 2010-2015
I grew up in the west side neighborhood of Warrendale, bordered by Dearborn and Dearborn Heights, the suburb where I had my K-12 education. My schools were only about five miles from my childhood home, but I think I was always very cognizant of the stark urban-suburban divide. A divide is also present within the city itself. I've taken to calling Detroit a "block-by-block" city. One street could be fully abandoned while the next could be teeming with activity. It's a strange place. Until I was 18, I lived in that same house in Warrendale, then moved on to Wayne State University, spending four years living in Midtown, West Side Industrial and Brush Park, my favorite Detroit neighborhood. It was sometime during those years when I began to develop this mostly-scrapped project. I first intended to photograph all of the city's 100-plus neighborhoods, which is quite a daunting task for someone who didn't have a car or driver's license at the time. So I narrowed it down to the city's core neighborhoods, where I already spent almost all of my time, usually camera in hand. This collection is the culmination of that work. I despise those who focus on Detroit's abandonment and so-called "ruin porn," but I equally despise those who choose to ignore it. My background in journalism and the values that led me to pursue that career never allowed me to sensationalize any of my photographic work. Most of the photos in this collection are only lightly edited. This is not a full-fledged chronicle of my hometown, but a glimpse into what parts of it looked like from 2010-2015 (you'll be able to see the exact date by hovering your cursor over the image). I'm deeply proud of these photos, and glad I got to be a small part of Detroit at a time of such resurgence and turmoil. The city is great, but it's not great too. But the only way to go is up.
Speramus meliora; resurget cineribus : We hope for better things; it will arise from the ashes