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Challenge: Letting Go (Basic Editing I)
Camera: Nikon Coolpix 5400
Location: Bow, London
Date: Feb 7, 2004
Aperture: f/5.2
ISO: 50
Shutter: 1/112
Galleries: Urban, Emotive
Date Uploaded: Feb 8, 2004

This is taken very close to the propsed site of the Olympic Stadium should London win the bid for 2012 ... in the strange world of the Bow Back Rivers, a kind of post-Victorian-Industrial wasteland very close to my home, and one of my favourite subjects these days (see the 'desolation' entry). A few years back there was an attempt to make the area into a walking/recreational/wildlife reserve, but that foundered on paucity of funding, leaving a pecualiar wilderness of river-side paths and knackered old factories. Great territory.

Photographically, 'leading lines' is the trick here - this is what allows the subject to be a touch too far out of frame for the rigid compositionalists. I wanted to capture something of the idea of departure, thus the enormous amount of fore-ground: that that allowed me to use those shadows to extend the lines of the bridge, and to bring those lines back together, is purely fortunate.

Contrast and aspect ratio owe a great deal to the work of m. Beguin, though I'm not quite sure this has the lyricism of location he would find.

Place: 10 out of 188
Avg (all users): 6.2667
Avg (commenters): 7.4167
Avg (participants): 6.0099
Avg (non-participants): 6.4201
Views since voting: 1445
Votes: 270
Comments: 30
Favorites: 4 (view)

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10/27/2005 09:35:42 PM
the bridge is so spiderlike
the figure is so dark
the texture of the brick
and long shadows
bring hope rather than despair in her departure;
I guess when you leave somewhere you arrive somewhere else.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
02/12/2005 06:59:24 PM
How did I miss this one!
This is a masterpiece!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
02/18/2004 06:55:22 PM
From the Critique Club

This is one of those shots that I can not just sit down and write up a critique for. Each time I look at it I pick up a little more than the last time. I see another subtle nuance. This, to me, is a sign of a very good, if not great, piece!

My very first impression was that this was overly sharp and too contrasty. After a moment I realized that you have attained an almost surreal feeling with this combination. My next thought was that the darks are too dark and the highlights are too light, but again after a moment I realize that this all combines to give the overall feeling of moving from the here and now to the beyond.

Your foreground is very crisp and clear. The horizontal lines of the brick path give it a very 'base' feel, like a starting point. The rest of the lines lead your eye up and over the bridge into the unknown. You've accentuated this feeling with the very dark background and the very light lines of the bridge. This gives the bridge a feeling of a transition from the base or now into the unknown and shady future.

All in all a very compelling photo which implies a story. You don't know the details of the story, but you know that there is a change in it.

Kudos on this!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
02/18/2004 12:33:46 AM
Still my favorite so it's going in my favorite. Outstanding photo. I think it should have placed higher, though top ten is nothing to complain about. Seems it's no coincidence I thought this was JJBeguin's!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
 Comments Made During the Challenge
02/17/2004 12:19:32 PM
I really like this, very somber. A touch of lost detail in the darkest areas, 8.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
02/17/2004 07:42:34 AM
Nicely done black & white photo. Thought provoking...perhaps letting go of the past and moving on in another direction?
  Photographer found comment helpful.
02/17/2004 03:58:13 AM
The hot handrails on the bridge are totally distracting. Good theme to this picture, but I think its a little too dark and maybe a little oversharpened. Something just doesn't seem right here.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
02/16/2004 05:40:58 PM
I like the concept, but the contrast is a little high for my liking
  Photographer found comment helpful.
02/15/2004 02:02:10 PM
I really like this image, especially in b&w. Looks like a scene from an old '40s movie. She's leaving, but somehow, before the end of the movie, they're going to get back together! Wish the rails weren't blown out but that's a nit. Gave this an 8
  Photographer found comment helpful.
02/15/2004 02:04:41 AM
A lot of emotion comes through in this image. I like the use of B&W. The only thing I would wish for here would be a little less contrast...a cloudy or over cast day would have made this perfect..IMHO:) 9
  Photographer found comment helpful.
02/14/2004 10:01:00 PM
Nice shot.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
02/13/2004 05:23:38 PM
I find the lighting a little harsh and contrast a little high but I do like the content very much, and part of that is the shadows thrown by that strong light. The texture of the cobbles is wonderful.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
02/12/2004 01:07:14 PM
Breath-taking! B/W masterly applied!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
02/11/2004 11:43:56 PM
Ok. Hands down the best photo of the challenge. I'm going to venture a guess and say this is JJ's; it perfumes of him. Extraordinary photograph. 10
  Photographer found comment helpful.
02/11/2004 10:39:34 PM
My vote for the blue ribbon. Great metaphor here. The high contrast, lighting, and use of b&w all contribute to a theme of letting go and crossing over to the other side. Well done!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
02/11/2004 09:31:11 PM
I like this shot...it's emotionally charged. I think the light/...and or levels/gamma could of been adjusted to improve the balance. Good entry...best of luck.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
02/11/2004 08:53:16 PM
Great composition, a little dark.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
02/11/2004 08:34:47 PM
Great texture and rich B&W. I like this shot and it is the first one I commented on for this challenge. 10
  Photographer found comment helpful.
02/11/2004 07:24:01 PM
What a splendid, evocative moment. You have captured it well. Congratulations. 10
  Photographer found comment helpful.
02/11/2004 07:00:15 PM
Very nice shot. Great choice of B&W. Very well balanced and good composition. Interesting light effect creating great mood.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
02/11/2004 06:50:15 PM
Nice composition and textures.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
02/11/2004 04:59:36 PM
for me the contrast is a little too much..but i like the composition of it..very nice.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
02/11/2004 12:04:39 PM
NIce lighting, good luck!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
02/11/2004 11:30:15 AM
great light on the foreground lose some in the background with the lighting maybe a filter would help with that
  Photographer found comment helpful.
02/11/2004 10:50:54 AM
Great use of B&W, busy but appealing composition, figure well placed and adds to the overall impact.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
02/11/2004 05:23:32 AM
Nice B/W, the contrast is OK for the paving stones and the bridge, but a bit harsh on the tree at left. I had cropped it out (but it's just me)
  Photographer found comment helpful.
02/11/2004 01:52:11 AM
A little bright (shiny) but works well.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
02/11/2004 12:37:20 AM
I like the B&W usage here. I don't think this would work nealry as well in color. 8
  Photographer found comment helpful.
02/11/2004 12:28:19 AM
I get your idea. But to me, I think i would enjoy your image if you show some sense of motion for the person. If she seems a tad stationary. Also, I think that your image is a tad dark, lighten up a big would help, as i think you lost some detail.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
02/11/2004 12:25:11 AM
The B&W is perfect, really fits with the look of the photo. Excellent use of the rule of thirds which makes the photo really beautiful. A high vote from me, good luck...
  Photographer found comment helpful.

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