From the Archives — Art Deco in Tulsa — 5* Pix

Total Shots taken 78
Number of 5 star ratings (5* yield %) 6 (7.7%)

After my recent lesson on bringing out the most in your images (see “Just a squirrel looking for a nut”), I decided to take a gander thru my archives, looking for other images I had previously opted not to post. These images from a trip to Tulsa OK fell into that category. I read about Tulsa’s art deco buildings in an airline magazine on the city, so when a friend announced Tulsa as the location of her upcoming wedding, I was in!  Prior to arriving, I tried unsuccessfully to get a map showing these buildings, or take an architectural walking tour.  I knew this trip was going to be a photographer’s dream.

The day was beautiful: bright and sunny; clear blue sky, a cool fall day. My plan, since i had no map of building locations: walk around, find what buildings I could, and snap, snap, snap away! I ended up with 75+ images, yet none seemed to have the “wow” I had expected.

Fast forward a couple of years, thousands of images, and 18 months of weekly blog posts.  I looked at these images with new eyes.   I saw that I had the some true gems that I had not recognized when I originally screened and  processed the images. Hope you enjoy these 5* images from the archives.


  • Boston Avenue Methodist Church – This historic church is celebrating 121st anniversary overall, and its 85th year in this iconic structure. This immense sanctuary is located on a large expansive campus, which includes a 1 acre park, near downtown Tulsa. On my self-guided Tulsa architecture walk, I saw this wonderful building from afar — first the tower, then the remaining structure emerged from behind the trees — as I walked down the street. It was closed, so I didn’t get a chance to see the inside, but from the outside it was fabulous.


  • Holy Family Cathedral – This was one of several HUGE churches among the many architectural gems in and around downtown Tulsa. This one was right across from a local parking lot, and I found it on the way back from the Boston Avenue church. The Cathedral was built in 1914, and at the time, it was a standalone structure – the lower rise annex was built at a later time.


  • Philcade Tower (Outside) — This tower has been written up as a featured element of the central area arts district. The decorative corners standout against the bright blue sky.


  • Inside the Philcade Tower: Hallway — The gilded ceiling and pendant chandeliers make the hallway a glow. Each pendant chandelier has a light cover


  • Inside the Philcade Tower: Light Cover – I loved the ornamental detail of the bottom of the pendant chandeliers. Looking up, you see how the designers had the full vision of of this detail – how the light would look when standing under it.


  • Inside the Philcade Tower: Carved Ceilings – The detail in these ceilings is breath-taking. These carved ceilings were hidden on the lower levels.

You can’t take pictures of beautiful architecture on a bright day with the bluest skies, and come away with NO 5* images. I am glad I learned THAT lesson and had these images in my archives. Hope you enjoyed these reclaimed  5* images!

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