Two streams that come from the mountains west of Gangneung empty into a bog which drains into a short stream that turns into a larger bog that then becomes Gyeongpo Lake which drains into a five hundred metre river/stream that ends up in the sea. The place where that stream enters the sea is called Gangmun. Gangmun means ‘River Gate’. Some years ago the city built an arched pedestrian bridge over the river mouth called Sotdae Bridge. Sotdae is a carved wooden bird on top of a pole used in Korean shamanism. Usually at the entrance to a village to ward off bad luck or wish for prosperity. But I meander . . . .

I only noticed while looking at this print today that there is a lovely little arch of light under the far end of the bridge.

I thought at first that this photo was too ‘left heavy’ because of the mass of the shadowed arch, but maybe the simplicity of the shadows section is balanced by the complexity of the right side of the photo. I’m still not sure about this one. Maybe it needs a little bit cropped off the left to make a vertical panorama? Let me know what you think.

And here is the Hyundai Hotel framed by the arch and the cables of the bridge. And the pine trees. I’ve tried this view several times in the past, but this is the first time that it came out well. So, happy days.
For those of you interested in such things, these were made with a Nikon F6 on Portra 400 film. I don’t remember which lenses I used. I used to send the film away to get 50MB scans, adjust those, and then send the files to the lab to get prints made, but I saved myself a bit of money and time by just sending the film to the lab to get prints of these three photos and then scanning the prints. Anyone unsatisfied with the scans my little Canon scanner made is welcome to visit my place to see the original prints. I’ll even give you a cup of tea and introduce you to my cat!

6 thoughts on “Gangmun Prints

  1. I feel it might be a bit too long a travel from Norway to Korea just to have a look at a few prints… but since the scans looks mighty fine it should not be necessary as such, even though a nice cup of tea and a chat with the cat sounds great :)) And that print no.2 looks very nice, since you asked. I don't think it's too heavy in any direction to be honest. The things going on at the right side and the bridge base seems to be leveling everything out.


  2. Nice lines, Marcus. And I like the story of the wooden bird – is it a representation of a particular bird, do you know? We have lots of owls around here – in peoples' gardens etc. When you start to look for them it's a little bit disconcerting, actually – they're everywhere!I think print#2 is fine the way it is – yes its a great big intruding thing but it is what it is and the print gets that across nicely in my eyes. The curve of the rail is a good foil for all the straight bits.


  3. The cat says he is disappointed you won't be around, haha.Thanks for commenting on the photos. I think you are right about the railings and the bridge base balancing things out.


  4. Thanks. I also like the first one the best. It's graceful, I think. The scanner I have might be the cheapest of the Canon line, but it does do a good job of scanning photos. The best thing is that the scans look like the prints without any adjusting by me in software.


  5. Thanks for the comments and opinion. The totem poles in this area have ducks on the top. It could be different in other areas. There are actually a lot of ducks around here. Especially in winter when they come from their summer 'home' in Russia. There are quite a few different species to be found at the river mouth in the colder months.


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