We are two friends, Bryan and Michael, who travel in search of abandoned buildings to explore and photograph. We film our adventures to share with the world. We’ve been attracted to abandoned buildings since a very young age, and have been interested in film-making for equally as long. However, it wasn’t until 2014 when we had the chance to step into our very first abandoned building- the Southeastern Academy of Tourism and Travel. Not a very interesting place by the standards of some of the places we would explore in the coming years, but at the time it was a captivating experience for us. When you step into an abandoned building, you get the feeling that you’re leaving the world you know and stepping into another one- maybe one you’ve seen in movies, read about in a book, or only imagined in your dreams.
We realized that abandoned places exist in a world isolated from the daily lives of most everyone, only to be experienced by the few who see the merit in taking the risk to enter them. What is that merit exactly? Well it’s a multitude of factors, but they include seeing glimpses of architecture from times past, discovering historical artifacts, finding the beauty in decay, and most of all just experiencing the excitement of exploration- being surprised and thrilled by what’s around every corner. After over 5 years of filming Proper People videos, we’re still filled with a sense of awe every time we step into a new abandoned building- and until that feeling stops, we don’t plan on stopping either.
Why are you called The Proper People?
When we first started out exploring there was one problem we constantly faced- pesky “no trespassing” signs plastering every building that looked interesting to us. We had no idea what to do about this problem until one day we came across a sign stating “ACCESS PROHIBITED - EXCEPT BY THE PROPER PEOPLE.”
Ever since then, we were The Proper People.
Why can’t you tell us where some places are located?
We are secretive about certain locations in order to protect them. Abandoned buildings are huge targets for vandalism for many reasons. For one, scrappers like to come in and strip the place of all copper wiring and pipes. Then there are your run-of-the-mill vandals who are just looking to smash some windows and spray paint walls. Finally in the most extreme cases you have arsonists. We don’t want to aid these people in their quest to cause destruction by making these locations publicly known.
Do you ever take any souvenirs from the places you visit?
No! We’re interested in making sure the cool places we find stay cool. Once all the items inside an abandoned building are removed it won’t be very interesting anymore. “But its just one item” you might say. Well if everyone who explores a building took “just one item” it would be emptied out in no time. To us these buildings are time capsules, meant to be preserved and admired with a light step, and removing anything from inside would be removing part of it’s history.
Do you bring any weapons with you?
Occasionally, if we believe a location has a high chance of having dangerous people inside such as drug addicts, we will throw some pepper spray in our backpack, but never anything more. This is because trespassing with a weapon is a felony where we live. If you’re caught, pepper spray will usually be seen as a self-defense tool rather than an offensive weapon such as a gun or a knife, and it will be much easier to explain yourself. If you’d like to know more about what we bring with us when we explore, you can check out our gear page here.
Can you take me along on one of your adventures?
We get a message almost every single day of somebody asking us this, and as much as we’d love to meet everyone, taking everyone along just isn’t possible. So unfortunately we have to say no to these requests.
Where can I get that song you used?
Check the video description or the ending card of our videos. If there is no link in either location, that means that the song was either made by us or we got it from Epidemic Sound, a royalty free music service that we pay for. For tracks made by us, including our intro music, you can stream or download (if available) them on our Soundcloud page.
How can I get in touch with you guys?
We’re active on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Feel free to message us there anytime. For all official business please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.