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The Haunted Scrapbook

A collection of haunted photographs that I took throughout my recovery from depression. Photography was not just a hobby, but also a coping tool for me.

By Talia DevoraPublished 4 years ago 4 min read
The Skeleton Bush- Islington and Steeles, Toronto, October 25 2019. Taken from my iPhone 8+ with a Dark Noir filter.

When I was in the 10th grade, I took a photography class at my high school in North York, Ontario. After discovering that one of my teachers was a passionate photographer, I decided to pursue photography, not thinking that it would develop into such a passion that I developed as an adult. I thought I was just going to pursue it for the sake of trying something new, because I was keen on exploring a new form of visual arts. At first, the photgraphy class was not stimulating enough and less engaging, until I got the opportunity to do class projects later on in the course. I enjoyed creating my own pictogram, which was my first assignment that I ended up completing successfully.

Once I finished the 10th grade, I did not pursue photography. I was more focused on my other hobbies like reading, painting, spending time in the outdoors, being with friends/family, listening to music, going to the library, working out, studying the Russian language and culture, spending time on social media and of course volunteering in the community. Than, depression took the best of me at the end of Grade 11 and for the remainder of my high school years, I lost interest in many of the creative hobbies that I used to enjoy. Instead, I would read, listen to music, go on walks, sleep early, go on shopping sprees and eventually I was granted employment to work as an arts and crafts instructor at a summer day camp, which I loved very much. I enjoyed life, but my level of fulfillment in the creative arts weakened and I did not do art outside of my job.

After I was finally done secondary school and entered the exciting world of post-secondary education, I regained some of my creative pursuits that I used to enjoy, which made me feel like I was finally on the road to recovery. I slowly got back into painting and doodling, and than I eventually pursued photography after five years of not practicing the photography skills that I learned in school. After the first few photographs that I took at the beginning of college, it became a regular hobby that was both convenient and therapeutic for me. I could not afford a traditonal camera, so I would often take photographs using my iPhone which was very convenient, since I could just take photographs with only one device, instead of two.

Here are two my first not-so haunted, but dark-enough photographs that I took on November 26 2017 while I was walking along the Finch Corridor in Toronto.

Although this photo may have some brightness, but I definitely see this at somewhat haunted, because of the minimally leaved trees, the dark clouds and the wind.

Name of Photograph #1: The Blue Autumn Sky

Not so haunted, but desolate enough to be called "The Abandoned Lake".

Name of Photograph #2: The Abandoned Lake

Luckily, I did not have to purchase a pricey camera, because my phone was like a built-in camera that included a real photographer's palette of effects, filters and best of all, I was able to zoom the photographs as I was taking them. In my opinion, the phone is a lifesaver for those who are or who want to further pursue photography.

Once my depression started to slowly fade away, I often went on photography trips to different Toronto communities and neighbourhoods like Weston Road, Thornhill, The Finch Corridor and would frequently stroll around residential neighbourhoods to find statues that I would take pictures of, turning them into inanimate versions of models like Kate Moss and Paris Hilton. Other things would interest me throughout the photography journe I was on. To make them look more professional, some of the photos required a filter, some of them looked just as perfect without a filter.

Here is one of my unfiltered photographs that was taken in the winter of 2018.

Death is dark, even on sunny days.

Name of Photograph: The Animal Garden Tombstone

Statues and abandoned rivers were not the only things that inspired me to keep pursuing the art and magic of photography. Tall buildings like cathedrals and mosques, cemeteries and tombstones would also make impeccable haunted photographs which would require a black and white, or dark noir filter to make it stand out more. To be honest, most of my photographs were dark, desolate and abandoned, rather than fashionable and modern like photographs of the new designer purses that I would witness in neighbourhoods and places like Yorkdale Mall and the Fashion District in Toronto. Many of the photographs reflected on dark feelings that I have experienced, which also explained why I often picked cemeteries and tombstones as some of the objects and places I used. Watching a collection of horror and thriller movies, as well as exploring horror paintings and photographs have also opened my eyes to cursed and dark photography. I use film and art to inspire me to create more spooky pieces of art, especially photographs. While travelling to different places around the globe like The US and Israel, I would also take photographs, but they are not dark and haunted but rather mystical and vibrant. Most of my haunted and gory photography would take place in Canada.

Take a look at a collection of "really spooky, dark noir and dark" photographs I took in the years of 2018-2019.

This is the only haunted and spooky photo that I took while travelling abroad.

Name of Photograph: Black Night in Jerusalem

Unfiltered, but dark enough to be considered a "spooky, spine chilling photograph". Quarantine is indeed a spine chilling experience.

Name of Photograph: Quarantined

Name of Photograph: The Haunted Garden

Name of Photograph: The Fright Sign

As an adult living on my own, I continue to pursue my passion and love for the art of photography. Photography is not just a coping mechanism for me. Photography gives me an excuse to get out of the house, discover new and unknown places and sites, practice other forms of creative arts, apply the skills I have learned in Grade 10, and to network with other visual arts enthusiasts on social media. I have a heap of friends who are also visual arts enthusiasts and amateur photographers, so I have also inherited my interest through the friendships that I have started and preserved over the years. Hopefully, I do not ever convince myself to relinquish my love for photography, because it is therapeutic and engaging at the same time.

Take care and have an awesome rest of the week! Bye for now!


About the Creator

Talia Devora

Poetess, visual artist and lifestyle/quiz writer! My pastimes include reading, sleeping, gaming, music, fitness, etc! Be yourselves, be kind and value life! Let's connect and be friends!

My IG accounts: @tdwrites24 & @tdcreates97

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    Talia DevoraWritten by Talia Devora

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