Photography and commentary from John Fujimagari

Posts tagged “architecture

Simmons Building

Simmons Building


I’ve seen the Simmons Building around the East Cal, or now the East Village, for years and have wanted to photograph it. Well, it has been around for years, since 1912 to be precise. It started life as a mattress factory and later just a warehouse. Renovations and preservation began in 2008, with a restaurant, coffee roaster and bakery now occupying the premises.

I love the signage painted on the sides of old brick buildings, and this one was no exception. Luckily there was only one business in the place for most of it’s existence, so there was no issue with painting over as occupants changed in the over one hundred years of being. I wanted the dark, stark, contrasty black and white to suggest age and to deemphasise the cars and other modern trappings in the parking lot. The “Guaranteed” in the oval graphic, to me, shouts old time!

In the best light…


Bay Arcade At Night

Bay Arcade At Night


The downtown Bay store is one of my favourite locations. The outside arcade has a variety of shapes and patterns using granite and cream coloured terracotta. I was surprised that the lights were not on in the walkway but thought  that must be because of the construction that was happening behind me.

Taken with my Nikon Coolpix, hand held at 1/6 sec, slow enough for the pedestrian going past is blurred.

In the best light…

The Old And The New

Old & New

The Bow Building towers over the Clarence Block. The Bow is Calgary’s newest skyscraper, finished this year, it is the the tallest building west of Toronto. It was designed by Foster + Partners from London, UK. They won the Stirling Prize for architecture in 2004 for 30 St Mary Axe also known as “The Gherkin”.

Compare that to the Clarence Block rebuilt in 1901 by James Lougheed the grandfather of former Alberta Premier Peter Lougheed. After a fire that destroyed the original 1892 building on Christmas Day1900, Senator Lougheed vowed to rebuild immediately. The new building was designed by William Dodd (who also designed City Hall) and opened by February 1901!

Shot with my Nikon D300s, Nikkor 24-70mm @38mm, f/4.0, 1/1250 sec, ISO 200, post processed using Adobe Lightroom 4.1 and Nik Color Efex Pro 4.0.

In the best light…

Architectural Details


One of the things that amaze me with old buildings is the incredibly intricate details in their construction.


Art Deco On The Avenue

Art Deco Storefront

The neon store front on Kane’s Harley Cafe on Ninth Avenue caught my eye. Kane’s moved their Harley Davidson dealership out of this building in the 1990’s and into the former liquor store behind them. They then renovated and created a classic diner. We haven’t eaten here in quite a while, and it might be time to go back and sample their wares. As I recall their burgers are particularly good.

In the best light…