THE BRIDGE TO NOWHERE – IS THAT BAD??

At a recent meeting of the Photographic Society of Orange County, I submitted this image for professional evaluation:

In his evaluation, the photographer voiced a concern over the confusion created by the fact that the bridge disappeared into the brush.  He was confused and left wondering where the bridge led. Because of that evaluation, I buried this print and forgot about it – until recently.

I retrieved it to post here, thinking I have the best photographic evaluators in the world right here helping me along this exciting journey.  So, be honest!  I can take it!

🙂

In photography, is a bridge that leads to nowhere bad?

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~ by photographyfree4all on July 26, 2011.

23 Responses to “THE BRIDGE TO NOWHERE – IS THAT BAD??”

  1. Personally I enjoy images that make me think. If you were documenting the bridge – then yes, what does the other side of the bridge look like? However I suspect you were sharing the bridge with the viewer, allowing the bridge to be whatever road or path the viewer wished.

    Keep photographing what you enjoy – don’t allow someone else’s need for ego to frame your own creativity.

    click on my friend, click on.

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  2. I can’t believe that he said this image was “confusing”!! Some of the most amazing photos I’ve ever seen had a road or path of some sort leading off to the unknown – it allows the viewer to use their imagination. Not all photos have to reveal everything, the mystery is part of the beauty! I think this is a gorgeous photo, and so pretty in b&w!! 🙂

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  3. Who is this person? When you posted this previously (or one very similar) I loved it for the very reason that it was a visual mystery. There are two paths to take in this photo, one man made and one made by nature. I love to do this very thing when designing my gardens… It invites the visitor in and takes them on a journey… what’s round the bend?

    In your photo we have no idea where the two paths may take us, but we are nevertheless curious as to what we might find at the end of our journey.
    Just MHO. ~ Lynda

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  4. I like it. As for the critique – there’s nothing wrong with a bit of mystery in a photo!

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  5. Steve,

    I LOVE this photo! It leave room for the unexpected. You can predict the future and this photo leave me wondering what is on the other side. It’s almost exciting imaging what could be on the other side of the bridge.

    And I love the SNOW!

    Scott T

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  6. I am inclined to agree with that photographer. You exposure, etc. is great but as far as the composition, I think if you had positioned yourself nearer to the end of the bridge, to look down the “road’?”, it probably would have been more interesting. But, otherwise, a nice photo. 🙂

    Bob

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  7. I love the feel of the image, and I don’t think that the bridge leading nowhere is a bad thing. What I find distracting is that the bridge seems unanchored on the right. There doesn’t seem to be any sort of support and my mind rejects that unless the image is meant to be a bit sureal. IMHO

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  8. Thank you, Dawn. I really liked this image when I first saw it. When he offered his evaluation, it did cause me to think. But, I still liked the image.

    I’m glad you commented. I really appreciate your participation!

    🙂

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  9. It seems to me, I’ve seen a lot of bridges that only present a partial view in some way, Holly. In fact, this situation has drawn me totake note when I see a bridge in a photo – some are presented much the same way as this one. I know photography is subjective – everyone sees things differently. And, I agree with your statement about the mystery. For me, it’s very intriguing to see an image of a road or path that leads out of the frame. I always imagine where that road or path goes! To me that piques my interest far more than having everything revealed.

    But, I’m still not confident enough to say, I don’t care what you think – this is a good image. But maybe someday I will be!

    🙂

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  10. Hi Lynda! When I posted this image before – it had not been evaluated. I think that evaluation caused me to push this out of my active files. I know I’ve never printed this image. But, now I think I may!

    I love your thinking here! It’s much the same way as I think when it comes to evaluating images! Thanks for your comment here. great job!

    🙂

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  11. Thank you, Journey. I do tend to agree, but realize that’s the beauty of art – not everyone may think the way you do. I just have to be careful how much I allow those evaluations to influence me. I have to glean what I can and use it, while discarding what may not pertain to my goals!

    Thanks for sharing your comment. I really take seriously your input!

    🙂

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  12. Thanks, Scott! You are spot on with what many are saying! I really liked the snow, too! That’s why I decided to process it in B&W!!

    Stop by often, Scott! Your comments are always welcome.

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  13. Hi Bob! I did manage to capture other perspectives of the bridge, but none seemed to be as good as this one (to me). The bridge was actually a walking bridge across a creek. When you exited the bridge on the side that is actualoly in the view, but hidden from the scene, the path immediately turned right or left because there was a mountain directly in front of the bridge exit. Any perspective showing more of the bridge path seemed to lead your eye right into that mountain. 🙂

    When he gave his evaluation, I like you thought his comment was valid. I could see where in a perfect world it would have been nice to have both ends of the bridge in view. That’s why I canned the image – until I came back across it and thought, “I still like this image.” So, I do think I’ll frame it and seeif it sells.

    Bob, I love that you give your honest evaluation! Your candid replies have impressed me numerous times! Thanks for your help!

    🙂

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  14. No, I don’t think so. The idea that the picture didn’t show me where it was going never entered my mind when you posted it before. I saw it as a beautiful bridge in a wooded area passing over a creek/ravine. As I look at it now I still think it is very pretty just as it is. I can imagine where it might go and I think maybe that is okay to just leave it to the imagination.

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  15. I understand what you’re saying Ted. Having been there, I can see the support structure on the right even though it blends into the landscape very well – probably by design. Thanks for your comment. I seem to be drawn back to the image as well. maybe it’s the feel of the image that’s doing that for me!

    🙂

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  16. Thank you, Miss Betty! Imagination…it’s a great aspect of photography! I think what I’ve learned is that there is more than one way to look at an image!

    🙂

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  17. I think that overall, the picture has a good balance to it. Almost a darker image on the right and a lighter image on the left. Yin/Yang, if you will. Not being able to see the end of the bridge doesn’t bother me one bit. Isn’t art supposed to make you think? Dream?

    My only constructive criticism is the piece of deadwood in the right foreground. I find it to be somewhat distracting from the rest of the image and wind up looking at it, over and over – rather than taking in the grander scene behind it.

    And never, ever forget my rule #2 (rule #1 being always have your camera). If you like it, who gives a damn if someone else does or does not?!

    Nice work, one of your better images.

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  18. I was hoping I’d hear from you on this subject, Derrick! I value your expertise on subjects such as this. And I must say, your pointed conclusion (rule #2) is emblazened into my memory now!! 🙂

    Yeah, the deadwood in the foreground is questionable for meas well. But was sitting on the fence as to foreground interest and simple distraction. I could remove it and see if it looks different. I may try that.

    Way to go, Derrick! Great comment.

    🙂

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  19. You’re quite welcome – as for my expertise…. you get what you pay for! 🙂

    In the end, we as photographers and dare I say artists have to decide who we are doing this for. I’m not talking about shooting images for a client… I’m talking about shooting those images that grip your heart and soul and brain. If it’s choice “a” and you’re shooting for a client, then by all means do what you can to make them happy. If you’re shooting for you (which is what the vast bulk of us are doing), then who gives a rat’s arse if someone else likes it? If they do, that’s GREAT!!! Bonus! Icing on the cake. But in the end, for those images that we shoot for ourselves, the only opinion that matters is yours.

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  20. The best thing a photographer can do for the viewer is to present a photograph that inspires emotion, thought and wonder. This photo does all of that! Great job

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  21. Thank you so much, Dana! You have hit the nail square on the head!!

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  22. I don’t mind the right side going off into the woods; it leaves something to the imagination. And the bit of wood in front is okay – it anchors the viewer and gives scale. But the crop on the left side feels a bit tight. I’d like to be able to visually travel from the foreground onto the bridge and into the woods, but I can’t get there from here.
    I appreciate the depth and contrast you brought forth in this B/W. It has a great feel.

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  23. Very good observation, Sharon! I can see your point! Your comment caused me to think back to when I captured the shot. I was trying to remember why there isn’t more room in the left side of the image. But, I can only remember that it was snowing and very cold for this southern California boy! 🙂

    Thanks for this well thought out comment! I hope you’ll contribute often!!

    🙂

    Like

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