It’s a common piece of advice photographers and urban enthusiasts often give to others who want to experience a city in a new way. It’s an easy phrase to remember, requires minimal effort, and actually does get people to see new things they might otherwise miss.
But the phrase is often used within an outdoor context. Older skyscrapers, high rises, and multi-story buildings usually brandish intricate details and artistry far above street level. “Look up” is a reminder to appreciate that which is often only accessible to the birds.
And then Westwood resident Michael E. Besl comes along and reinvigorates the notion of aiming your gaze skyward.
His whole mission is to get you to notice the ceilings of those same buildings using his Instagram account @cincyceilings. “Look up” suddenly assumes a whole new indoor layer and breaks down how to appreciate our built environment into strata previously unrecognized by the masses.
And it’s brilliant, because so often people cannot appreciate the inside of a building due to it having limited access. The artistry fails to be seen, and its relative unavailability keeps it from being admired by more people. Michael grants the ability to glimpse an important piece of these places for those of us who haven’t had the privilege to see them ourselves.
In the gallery above, you’ll find a selection of his unique photography, which includes several well-known places in the urban core and surrounding suburbs.
Check out more Cincy ceilings by following (you guessed it) @cincyceilings on Instagram.