The Hastings Building, Port Townsend, Washington
Our last stop on the way out of Port Townsend was a bookstore so I could purchase an Edward Weston book. While patiently waiting at the curb, Brooks Jensen spied a lovely Victorian building on the corner of Water and Taylor Streets. On a hunch, Brooks went into the first floor clothing store and asked if we could photograph the upper floors of the building. Brooks emerged with the landlord’s phone number and called it from a bench outside the building.
Later that day while photographing Neah Bay, the landlord called back. She invited us to photograph the building with the proviso that she could use the photographs to help gain funding to help restore the historically important building. In my haste and excitement to return to Port Townsend, I accidentally deleted the entire morning’s photographic efforts. There is no doubt in my mind some of the greatest images ever made in the history of photography were deleted that morning. (That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.)
We returned to Port Townsend and photographed the inside of the Hastings Building for three days.
Two things that helped us most in gaining access to this historic building was asking permission to photograph the building. Without asking we wouldn’t have access to make the photographs. After asking, the second help was having web sites that clearly demonstrated that we were capable of producing excellent photographs. Coupling those two important things with our willingness to help the landlord sealed the deal. Helping other people through your photography is a good way to get the opportunity to photograph special places.