Last week saw a visit to a beautiful little Hamlet just outside York. I’d seen some before photography of the cottage so I wasn’t completely sure what to expect. I think it’s important to go to a property without too many pre-conceived ideas. The very nature of a home means that it is individual to the owner. Shooting a formally presented house requires a completely different approach from that of an eclectic one. It’s back to the point I keep making about portraying the personality of a space.
Well this lovely cottage was just bursting with character. And I use the word in the property sense of beams, sash windows and fireplaces but also in the more human sense of light hearted and confident. A confident house? So what’s one of those? Well, the answer isn’t straightforward, as you might expect. It’s the kind of place that absorbs what is it in and makes it feel at home. Be that furniture, a newspaper or a five year old child. It’s the kind of property where what is in it is no more or less important than the walls containing it. The kind of place that you feel you instantly feel you could chuck a log on the fire and curl up with the newspaper.
As an architectural photographer with York as our playground we are spoilt for choice when it comes to old buildings. Victorian, Georgian, Roman, there are structures from the past ten centuries to photograph. There will be plenty of York’s old buildings for you to look at over the next few months but here I’m going to share with you some of York’s more recent architectural heritage.
These photographs have all been taken at The University of York. Only established in 1963 York University is consistently ranked among the best universities in the UK and indeed around the world. A recent expansion into the Heslington East Campus has seen a range of newly designed buildings springing up offering a stark architectural contrast to the 60’s and 70’s buildings on the Heslington West campus.
We photographed two of the newer buildings, the York Sports Village building and the Ron Cooke hub, the central building to the Heslington East expansion. Architecturally they contrast and complement each other in equal measures. The Ron Cooke Hub, completed in 2010 at a cost of £15m shares a similar sweeping roofline to that of the York Sport Village building. The water at the Sports Village is all inside whereas the boardwalk and floating study pods connect the Ron Cooke Hub with its waterfront location.