Sunday, May 18, 2014

When light compresses the view

Comings and goings
London, ON
September 2013
Thematic. Landscapes. Here.
Long lenses can do some pretty amazing things to an otherwise ordinary scene. Perhaps my favorite trait is that of compression: a long focal length tends to squish the scene from back to front - or front to back, depending on how you look at it. It lets you see ordinary things in extraordinary ways.

And so it did on this sunny September morning as I stood on a hospital parking structure. I was feeling less than my usual shiny happy self - hence the visit to the hospital - and I was alone in this silent world of concrete. I probably spent entirely too much time slowly walking the abandoned slabs in between the cars, but something about this place begged me to hang around for a little while longer. I wandered over to the edge to clear my head, and when I looked through the lens I realized why I had come here.

I may yet have more visits to the hospital in my future, but as long as I have a camera in my backpack, I'll always have the potential for a moment to stare out over the edge of an otherwise ordinary place and see the neighborhood in anything but an ordinary context. To anyone else it's just a picture. But to me, the possibility of being able to have moments like this is something that begs to be held onto. Tightly.

Your turn: Got any scenes nearby that beg to be compressed like this? Tell us about them.

No comments: