My first shot for the assignment (Photograph 1), was one I was adamant beforehand would work best in colour, because it was taken during the blue hour, which in my experience led to very powerful colours. However, I found that colour detracted from the uncertainty instilled by the foreshore’s relationship with the landmark, whereas the black and white treatment added to this intrigue and the relationship was more apparent. Therefore this treatment I felt was more suitable for my intentions of creating a sublime photograph.
Technical information for Photograph 1 was:
f11, 20s, ISO 100, focal length 11mm
The landmark (The Shard) was reasonably recognisable and I felt the eye was drawn automatically to it as it dominated the skyline. The foreshore’s components were placed in such a way that they formed a kind of triangle of leading lines up to the Shard. Although this pair of diagonal lead-in lines was subtle in angle, they were still present and led the viewer’s eye from both sides of the frame. Also, the photograph was basically split in two; the foreshore and everything above the bridge intersecting the river (Southwark Bridge). This meant the divide between the old (the foreshore) and the new (the Shard landmark) was very obvious. This contrast was augmented further by the foreshore having much darker components than the sky and the Shard in the distance and so for me the eye darted between the two, trying to make some sort of relationship form in the mind. I felt the vertical stumps of the eroded jetties of the foreshore in the foreground were quite menacing in character and contradicted the well-known landmark of the Shard in the distance well.
While I was shooting this photograph, I (quite soon) found that the tide came in quickly. This seemed quite unfortunate to me while I was shooting; I had to shoot quickly before the water was at my feet. As mentioned I had been shooting during the blue hour at that time so my exposure lengths were naturally quite long; more than few seconds. This meant the tide’s current and therefore small waves created a ‘misty’ effect to the water nearest the shore when the camera used a long exposure (more than a few seconds). This was something I thought added to the sublimity of the eventual photograph. Admittedly, although my exposure times weren’t long enough to ‘record’ the tide coming in, I found that when passing boats went by, there were (slightly bigger) waves produced a few seconds later. This further pronounced the ‘misty’ effect I was looking for and was a kind of silver lining to the ‘problem’ I had encountered of the tide coming in so fast.