The Weekly Photo Challenge | Transformation

When I saw the subject of this week’s Photo Challenge I thought, for the first time, I can do that one. Transformation can mean many things, some of which are not easy to capture in a single image, at least not without resorting to Photoshop. But when I saw the word transformation I immediately thought of a day I spent last year taking photographs around Liverpool.

Liverpool is a city that continues to reinvent itself. From a thriving dock and industrial centre to Merseybeat and culture, it has undergone an amazing transformation. And for me, nothing captures this more than the buildings that now take pride of place along the former dock roads. This particular shot was taken from beside Albert Dock during a walk intended to capture shape and form. I was first struck by the impressive shape of the new office block beyond the dock. It was only when I viewed it through my camera that I noticed the juxtaposition between this and the Liver Buildings beyond.

And it was only when I viewed my photographs later that I considered what a great example it is, to me at least, of Liverpool’s transformation. As a child, this part of the city was uninviting. The buildings were in decay, industry was in decline and the whole area was a sad reflection of Liverpool’s fall from grace as a centre of power and wealth. In the intervening years, the city has once again become a mecca for culture and industry. The docks may never regain their strategic and industrial importance, but the sheer volume of visitors to this regenerated area would indicate it’s future is more secure now than it has ever been.

In this image, we have the modern block, all glitter and shine, but with no discernable individuality or personality. But rising above it almost majestic in its stature and status, are the Liver Buildings, a true reflection of the city’s past. The two buildings couldn’t be more different, but they each represent an essential part of the city’s heritage and history.