Hotel rooms are strange places, empty and impersonal with no trace of the former occupant and no trace of you after you leave, but at the same time potentially putting their mark on your travels.
I recently realised that hotel rooms is another accidental series of mine; for quite a few years now I’ve been shooting vignettes inside the rooms and views through the hotel room windows.
The view from our hotel room in London last year. I remember it well because we didn’t sleep much that night; the room was frightfully hot with the window closed and terribly noisy with the window open since it was Friday night and close to King’s Cross.
A faux polaroid from the first and so far the only time I’ve stayed in a hotel for Christmas. I felt a little strange going to an impersonal hotel room instead of home after the big celebration, and tried to work out that weirdness from my system taking photos. At the time I had had my smartphone for only a few months, and was happily exploring the new world of photography apps.
The view from a hotel room in Brussels on one of my work trips there. It had been a whirlwind-type of a day – working a full day before travelling to Brussels, finding the hotel then going out for a late-night snack with a colleague before going to bed – and it calmed me down before bedtime to contemplate and photograph the view outside my window.
Bathroom still life in my favourite hotel in Dublin. I didn’t know it at the time, but this image started my series of hotel room tales. On this trip I spent some time in the National Gallery of Ireland exploring the work of Jack B. Yeats (brother of poet W. B. Yeats). I was particularly struck by a series of paintings called Four Scenes in Search of Characters. This is exactly what a hotel room is; a scene waiting for you to set your mark on it for a short time and for it to set its mark on you.
Have you been staying in hotel rooms this summer? How did the places you slept, shape your travels, and how do these places show up in your photography? Tell us in the comments!
~ Best wishes from Jenny.