Bus Parked Under Ponam Bridge

There are things to like about this photograph. The layers of light and shadow from top to bottom, the brake lights of the bus peeking out of the darkness like a cat under a blanket, the relative simplicity of the composition, and, um, it’s level.

But it’s boring. Flat. Static. There’s something missing that would turn this decent photo into a good or very good photo. But I couldn’t see it when I was there pressing the shutter button. I saw a bus, a bridge, the light and shadows, the apartments in the background, and the brake lights in the patch of light. There was something there, I’m sure, that I could have included or excluded to transform this bit of documetary into art. But I’m not skilled enough to find it.

How do I get to that level? Keep looking at great photographs, I guess. And maybe I need to spend more time looking at a scene before photographing it. When I was younger I could sometimes get a good poem to appear by staring at a blank sheet of paper for half an hour. (Being hopped up on many mugs of sugary tea probably helped as well). I just need to stare at things more.

The next time I go out I’ll make a point of choosing just one subject and working on it for more than a minute like I usually do. And bring some tea . . . .

7 thoughts on “What’s Missing?

    1. We’re not on lockdown, fortunately. I go out to make photographs and walk, but I’m avoiding places with lots of people.
      The university semester began but students are not coming to campus yet. I am recording video classes at home for my students. The missus is a school teacher and she’s just home with nothing to do at the moment.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Don’t take pics of anything until you feel a reaction to it, then raise the camera to your eye and walk around until you get somehting that looks the way a photograph ‘should’ look in the vf. Try and get what you’ve seen in others stuff to cog with what you’re seeing. I also try and use the mantra “would I print it?” . . if the answer is no, walk away.


  2. Chunkers talks sense. I must do that more often myself…

    You’re good when you write about composition, Marcus…your thought processes, the good, the bad & the ugly. Keep doing it.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s