Liminal Space and Creativity

Liminal Spaces

From tree-covered lanes to empty hotel hallways, I have often found inspiration in liminal space. I only recently heard the term that describes these places that are so full of possibility. On the morning walk to my office, I inevitably walk through a parking garage. Depending on the weather, I stride along a tree-lined sidewalk or the long, subterranean tunnels. At this time of day, it is very rare that I encounter anyone. My mind enjoys this wandering.

Liminal Space Defined

1: of, relating to, or situated at a sensory threshold : barely perceptible or capable of eliciting a responseliminal visual stimuli

2: of, relating to, or being an intermediate state, phase, or condition : IN-BETWEEN, TRANSITIONAL… in the liminal state between life and death.

Meriam-Webster Dictionary

Where It Takes Me

Upon first hearing the term, it quickly became a concept that I kept in mind. This phrase captured the sense of wonder, opportunity, and, at times, fear that certain places inspire. It is a rare walk through these spaces that I am not envisioning how I will light the model. What are they wearing? Should I gel the lights? Do I stick with the obvious composition or find the odd angle that carries this from liminal space to eerily fantastic?

Having painted the initial scene in my mind, I ponder when the best time would be to utilize the space. What other liminal spaces exist nearby? Would they offer a similar feel or do we twist the plot? Here, where others might be out right bored, I find a certain magic. The lines, shapes, and color (or lack thereof) sing a siren’s song. But will anyone else listen to it?


Do you enjoy liminal spaces? Do you have a taste for making those odd spaces your own, if only for a moment? Check my work at https://markgunterphotography.com and http://www.questionmarkphoto.com. Then hit me up and let’s talk about how we will create something fun and creative.

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