Life in Ireland has changed significantly over the past 150 years. Old images relate stories of the past to us, but have you ever wondered how specific locations in Ireland might have changed with the passing of time?
In today’s post a Cork Photographer tells of his experiences in recreating some of the region’s most iconic images from days gone by.
A big thank you to James Walsh from My Ireland Tour in Cork, detailing his amazing work. And so I’ll hand you over to James to tell his story.
Ireland Then And Now
For the first 30 years of my life, living in Cork, I had never noticed any real changes taking place in the city.
I guess when you see a place every day the little differences don’t tend to resonate as much. But I recently moved back to the city after spending a year in the UK and, returning home, I couldn’t believe what I saw.
Cork had changed. It must have been all the small, subtle changes I’d never taken note of before.
A paint job on my favorite pub, a new coffee shop, different road layouts, a juice bar next to the War Memorial on the Grand Parade. It felt as though I’d traveled into the future, even if really I’d been left in the past.
After a few days back I started to adjust to my surroundings and it started to feel like the Cork I know and love.
At the same time I kept thinking about the change, wondering if it had changed that much in a year how much had it changed in the last 5 or 10 years.
Knowing about my background in film and photography, a local tourism company called My Ireland Tour asked me to produce a photographic resource based in Cork and I immediately knew the pitch should be “the changing face of Cork city” – an article showing photos of Cork as it was and recreating those same iconic images today.
I started by researching old archive photos of Cork (some dating back as far as the 1880’s) and marking out the ones that I could recreate from the same location. The results, when put side by side, were fascinating. The cars, clothes, shop fronts had all drastically changed over time but the essence of the city was still there. It was still Cork. It was still Cork people going about their day.
The little story-telling nuances really brought each image to life for me and, bringing in a web-design specialist, I added a ‘magnifying glass’ tool which allows visitors to see every detail up close.
Whether you want to have a closer look at the mysterious woman dashing across Patrick’s Street in 1902 or the license plates of the cars parked across the Grand Parade in 1948 the magnifying glass really adds an extra level of enjoyment to the page. I hope you enjoy browsing through it as much as I enjoyed making it.
Ireland Then and Now : Images of Cork, past and present was conceived, captured and shared by James Walsh on behalf of My Ireland Tour.
A big thank you to James for his amazing work and this guest post. I hope you all enjoy the pictures of Cork, both old and new, which can be accessed through the links above. I loved using the magnifying tool to appreciate details of the pictures from the past.
Slán agus beannacht,
(Goodbye and blessings),
Irish American Mom
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