Bat Bar, 6th Street

Bat Bar, 6th Street - Austin, Texas

Bat Bar, 6th Street – Austin, Texas

I’ve often taken pictures of East 6th Street, but usually at night. The daytime isn’t very appealing photographically — no neon, colorful lights, shadowy backgrounds, or mystery. Just a bunch of old and worn buildings — though some with considerable history — that have been converted into bars. It’s a gritty part of downtown, and the night usual hides the worst of the visually offensive. There’s a reason why Austinites call this Dirty Sixth.

Most of my downtown Fuji GFX 50R photos are with a tripod, but this one is handheld. A snapshot, really, but with super-high resolution. The orange of the Bat Bar and the burgundy next door adds more daytime color than the others.

For the most part, the color on the GFX 50R is very accurate. The high-resolution photos displayed on my 27″ Retina iMac are the closest I’ve gotten to feeling like I’m actually there, at least visually. This is how a Sunday afternoon typically looks, pre-pandemic — I shot this in February.

I was there this past weekend, it looked moribund. All the bars are boarded up, after opening up for just a week or so, since the initial lockdown. Things were more optimistic back in March and April when colorful murals adorned the plywood coverings. Not so now. It just feels like defeat.

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