The Certainty of Change


Gate To Indifference – SLC, UT – Fujifilm X-E1

If there is one thing that is certain it’s that things change. Nothing stays the same forever. Changes can be big, and they sometimes happen overnight. Sometimes they’re quite small and are hardly noticeable, occurring over years and years. But you can rest assured that change will happen, whether big or small or fast or slow.

The photographs you see in this article of the abandoned homes are an example of slow change. It took years for these structures to transform from nice living spaces to derelict dumps. After a place is no longer maintained, the change seems to accelerate as vandals and nature take over. For these abandoned buildings that’s not where the change ends. There would soon be rapid developments that made the property essentually unrecognizable.

I captured these photographs in April of last year. I’d pass by the buildings often and wanted to stop and make some exposures. I used to do a lot of urban exploration type photography. I don’t venture into that genre much anymore, but I still get excited when I see an abandoned place, and I still have the desire to capture it. After a year of seeing these abandoned houses on a large property in Salt Lake City, Utah, I decided to stop and photograph them.


Losing History – SLC, UT – Fujifilm X-E1


Little House In The Valley – SLC, UT – Fujifilm X-E1


Abandoned House – SLC, UT – Fujifilm X-E1


Still, I Love You – SLC, UT – Fujifilm X-E1


The Place Had An Air of Neglect – SLC, UT – Fujifilm X-E1


Tree of Broken Glass – SLC, UT – Fujifilm X-E1

It wasn’t but two weeks after I captured the photographs above that the buildings were demolished. Big machines came in and knocked them down. The rubble was removed. Then more big machines came in and removed the trees and leveled the ground. Soon enough there was nothing left but a huge patch of flat dirt.

I watched as things changed rapidly. In a matter of weeks the property was unrecognizable. It looked absolutely nothing like it had before. As time passed concrete began to pour and after that walls went up. Something big was being constructed on the site where the abandoned homes once stood.


Sitting Large – SLC, UT – Fujifilm X100F


Diversity – SLC, UT – Fujifilm X100F


Caterpillar – SLC, UT – Fujifilm X100F

From start to finish, the project took about 16 months to go from a neglected property with derelict buildings to a finished distribution center. Now huge structures sit on the land, complete with sidewalks and nice landscaping and such. The transformation is almost unbelievable!

The moral of this story is that you should get out and capture the things that interest you, because things will change, and your opportunity might disappear. Don’t wait. Don’t procrastinate. The time is now! Grab your camera and capture that thing you’ve been eyeing before it’s too late, because eventually it will be too late.


Distribution – SLC, UT – Fujifilm X100F


Industrial Mirror – SLC, UT – Fujifilm X100F


Distributing Abstract – SLC, UT – Fujifilm X100F


  1. Minimalist Man of Color · September 1, 2018

    This is all very true. I live in New York City and the rapid change to the communities that have decayed over decades is astounding. I still have a few photographs, but more memories, of some of the old places. Documentation is a great thing to do and is a part of cultural conservation.

    • Ritchie Roesch · September 1, 2018

      Very well said! Thank you for commenting!

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