Exercise 4.5

The Task

Make a Google images search for ‘landscape’, ‘portrait’, or any ordinary subject such as ‘apple’ or ‘sunset’.  Add a screengrab of a representative page to your learning log and note down the similarities you find between the images.

Now take a number of your own photographs of the same subject, paying special attention to the ‘Creativity’ criteria at the end of Part One.  You might like to make the subject appear ‘incidental’; for instance by using juxtaposition, focus or framing.  Or you might begin with the observation of Ernst Haas, or the ‘camera vision’ of Bill Brandt.

Add a final image to your learning log, together with a selection of preparatory shots.  In your notes describe how your photograph differs from y our Google images source images of the same subject.

My Subject – The Firth of Forth Railway Bridge

I have long been fascinated by this bridge in much the same way as Ernst Haas experienced his apple.  I have photographed it many times and more often than not in the same way as the Google screengrab below:

Nearly all the photos show the whole bridge – many are taken in daylight with a couple at sunset and at night time.    They are also all in colour showing the brick red colour.

In the first few images rather than showing the whole bridge I showed some of the detail of this amazing piece of Victorian Engineering – the photos were taken from the car park at Sea World.   The next one shows some of the perspective of the bridge by including the houses of North Queensferry in the arch.   In fact this photo was taken through an archway in the road bridge.  The last one is also taken from North Queensferry and uses the wall as a leading line.  It also has the size of the bridge looking smaller in the distance.  The photos were taken on a grey bland day which did make it a little more difficult to get creative – the photos could have looked even more dramatic if there had been either stormy clouds or a sunrise/set shining through the structure.

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