On the tour of Dubai we have our new onesRollei battery packzeHS Freeze 6s and4s tested in different places. Among other things at onePhoto shoot in the desert with 40 degrees Celsius, camels and other surprises, although we needed a lot of flash power to even be able to take pictures against the sun.
A special treat was still waiting for us: a photo shoot at a lost place in the desert of Dubai. Lost Places have experienced a lot of hype in the photo scene in recent years, because the abandoned places with their morbid charm offer absolutely unique motifs.
Exploring secret places
The private exploration of these places is also called Urban Exploration (Urbex). An important part of this exploration are buildings that have not been used for a long time.
For example, as an urban explorer (also known as an urbexer), you would explore an abandoned villa, a bunker or a former reading room and take photos there. Secret places in cities are often visited that are known to the scene but do not play a prominent role in the everyday life of the population because they are closed to the public, for example because there is a risk of collapse.ht.
We visit a lost place
The Lost Place we visited near Dubai is called Al Madam, now also known as Al Madam Ghost Town. Nearby there is another place with the same name, which is a bit better connected with its roads.
According to our guide, the reason for the evacuation of the town was the government's plan to build a road, the realization of which was not compatible with the situation in the town. One can interpret Ghost Town in different ways. On the one hand, because the small town is completely deserted, on the other hand, because in the surrounding places the belief prevails from time to time that evil spirits (djinn) are up to mischief there.n.
A journey back in time
There are various reasons for the fascination with Lost Places. An important aspect, for example, is that the abandoned buildings, with their long-standing decay, allow a kind of time travel into the past.
Another reason: The photographer has to work with exactly the conditions that nature and location dictate to him. So overall, Lost Places can be a challenging topic. All the more so because in most cases there is little light in deserted places, so that you have to help yourself to take a good photo, which was also not an obstacle thanks to the strong batteries in our flashes.
The little excursion into the past was also the case in the abandoned town of Al Madam. It all looked as if the former inhabitants of the local Al-Kutbi tribe had left relatively quickly. This was evidenced by old bedsteads, sofas and also opened power boxes from which usable cables and switches had been taken. An absolutely impressive scenery, where great photos were taken.
Packing List and Tips for Lost Places Photography:
- Equipment (camera, lens, flash etc.) should not be too sensitive to dust, water and sand
- Always check whether there is a danger from the room you are visiting (e.g. falling roof tiles, etc.)
- Gloves, dust mask, protective goggles, overalls, first aid kit, mobile light, sturdy shoes, water and muesli bars, if necessary take a GPS device with you in case of an emergency
- Leave the Lost Place exactly as you found it according to the Urbexer Code of Honor
A notice: The place Al Madam was absolute luxury in terms of lost places. It is usually much more difficult to photograph these places and it is often not possible to use large flashes. Our contribution should not be an encouragement to actively photograph Lost Places. They can be very dangerous and in many cases it is illegal to enter.