Toronto has been a frequent stopover on transatlantic journeys home. For me personally it has become more than a way station on my somewhere else, but a first stop I build into trips as often as possible – even if there are perhaps more direct routes to where I am going. Friends and family have coalesced there over the years and it is a fantastic location for photography, so I get a nice twofer every time I go through the Big Smoke.
The Gooderham or Flatiron building at the convergence of Front and Wellington Street in Downtown Toronto is an easy and frequent target for photographers. Putting a new perspective on a popular landmark is always a challenge. Hint: snow always helps. I had to go back a couple of times but a heavy snowfall was exactly what I was waiting for.
I am not sure whether I should feel embarrassed or not to admit that I didn’t realize the name flatiron is in reference to a clothes iron – referring to the actual shape of the building. I thought it was in reference to the fire escapes being made of iron or something of the sort. Does a curved iron actually exist? Would that get your clothes wrinkle free? Are there not more obvious things these buildings resemble? Mouse cheese, pizza, a wedge? I have decided not to be embarrassed.
In any case it is smaller and perhaps not as well known as its counterpart in New York, however I find it charmingly understated. It is dwarfed by the surrounding skyscrapers, a whole city of glass and concrete has been flung up all around it. Nevertheless the architecture captures something modern techniques can’t, and it still draws tourists, photographers and your eye in the massive cityscape. It also looks great in the snow.