Suburban Apathy

This summer, I lived with my father in the suburbs of Denver instead of my usual home in a small mountain town. At first, I was really excited to be living closer to the city. I soon realized, however, that I am terrified of driving in real traffic. Most days I stayed around the small suburban area I was confined to and passed a lot of time doing nothing at all. I found the suburban lifestyle to be very different than my usual routine and was marked by a feeling of apathy brought on by the hot temperatures and lack of a social life there. I thought about the way that we as humans compartmentalize our lives, buying expensive homes in safe neighborhoods to create a sense of security.

While I felt very safe in the neighborhood, it felt somewhat artificial and almost too sheltered from the outside world. I felt that the culture there was one of possession and materialism, and found myself wondering what the point of it all was.

I took these photos in order to illustrate how strange the suburban lifestyle really is, and the way that I felt like an outsider in the neighborhood. I wanted to show that the mundane can be unusual, and how deeper meaning can lurk beneath the surface of an everyday scene. Walking around my neighborhood at dusk, I felt inspired by the structures surrounding me and what natural elements such as trees and plants were allowed in. At night, even very mundane and safe places like my neighborhood could become mystical and even a little scary. When I look back on these photos, I feel conflicting senses of apathy and restlessness.

By Carly Hough

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