About

A view of the hidden parts around the inner sections around the city centre of Manchester UK and beyond. How you perceive these derelict sites could be a sort of morbid fascination, or logically analysing the modes and functionally of the remaining fragments of architecture. This blog is the stage 1 of 'Urban Exploration' but I have to emphasise, if you visit these places and tempted to gain access..I wouldnt advise it unless you seek permission from the appropriate authorities.

Urbex Dictionary

The Dictionary of Urban Exploration Terms


Urban Exploration Locations
Access – This means gaining entry to a location.
Admin – This is where the administration, and often security, is in the building.
ARTS – This stands for abandoned rapid transport station, the last S can also mean system.
Cracking – This means gaining access to a location that most people or even no one else has explored before.
Bricked up – An access point that someone has blocked using bricks and cement
Crash bar – You will find these installed on exits. Opening one of these often triggers an alarm. Their everyday use would be to exit the building in an emergency.
The Fresh – Another word to describe raw sewage. You will encounter this if you explore sewage systems.
Holy Grail – A location that’s difficult to access, but is desirable to enter.
Hot – A location that has higher levels of security because someone was caught urbexing there.
Infiltration – Gaining access to a site that you should otherwise not have access to.
Picked – This means someone has already accessed a place using lockpicks.
Portal – A portal is an entrance point to something like a subway system. This point would be where that system goes from overground to underground.
Recce – Exploring a place before going there to photograph it. This involves looking for places to enter, where security is, and if there are any security cameras.
Rinsed – This refers to a place that has already been well explored and photographed.
Sniping – In most photography, this means taking a photo from a distance, like a sniper. In urbex photography, this refers to cutting through a fence or breaking a lock to gain entry.
TOADS – This is an acronym for temporary, obsolete and derelict spaces


Urban Exploration Gear

DSLR – The standard camera for most urbex photographers. Mirrorless cameras like the Sony Alphas are also popular.
High-Vis – This is a type of clothing, often a fluorescent yellow vest. It’s used by people so that they can be seen.
Overt Camouflage – This means dressing up in disguise to make it look like you belong in the location. This could mean wearing a high-vis vest, or other clothing worn by people who are on site.

Urbex Photographer Types
Prohobo – Someone who camps at an abandoned place using expensive camping equipment.
Asylum Seeker – A photographer who visits abandoned asylums. Of course, these asylums are now not in active use.
Catophiles – Photographers who enjoy exploring the underground catacombs of Paris.
Rooftopper – A photographer who enjoys gaining access to the top of tall buildings. This type often involves climbing fire escapes.
Buildering – Those who climb the sides of buildings to gain access to them.
Drainer – This is someone who enjoys exploring the sewers and drain networks that run under a city.
Lift Surfer – A person who stands on the roof of a lift while it’s moving, think almost any action movie and you get the idea.
Ninja – Someone good at avoiding detection. Ninjas are often good at breaking into a location by climbing over walls.
Noob – This is short for a newbie, somebody who is new to urbex photography.
Trojan Horse – A person who enters a building, with clothes that allow them to fit in there. They then let other people into the building.


Urbex Photography Terms


Backlighting – This refers to a light source that is behind your main subject. Hence the main subject is backlit. When used in portrait photography, this is sometimes called rim lighting.
Chimping – The practice of reviewing your photos on the LCD display of your camera. Most photographers aim to avoid doing this too much. It’s better to be taking photos rather than looking at them.
Hero Shot – This can refer to two things. The first is a great photo, the one that will turn heads when shown later. The other refers to a picture of a pleased urbex explorer who has gained access to a location.
Light Painting – Using a light source such as a torch to light a section that you are photographing. Light painting needs a long exposure, so you’ll require a tripod.
Dirty Shot – This type of photo involves pushing up the ISO to maximum levels and using a wide-angle lens. It’s known as dirty because of the digital noise this will cause in the photo.

General Urbex Terms


Back Cabbing – This means riding on the last wagon of a train. This gives you a higher chance that it’s empty, allowing more photography opportunities.
Base Jumping – This isn’t just for photography, and will get you spotted and in trouble. It involves Rooftopping and then jumping from the roof with a parachute.
Bait – This involves someone creating a distraction, to bait the security. While the security is not looking, people can enter the location.
Blagging – Using the power of persuasion to seem like you have a legitimate reason to be somewhere when you do not.
Buildering – Climbing up buildings using techniques you’d usually use for rock climbing.
The Bill – The police force.
Christmas – In urbex photography, Christmas is when a location becomes unguarded. A difficult to access site can become easier to enter, which is a gift for urbex photographers.
Masking Up – To avoid identification by a security camera, you put a mask on before you approach.
Usufruct – A legal term, which you can use to justify entering someone else’s property. The condition is that nothing becomes damaged or moved.

Original article by Simon Bond  on https://expertphotography.com





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