A few weeks ago at Compton Verney in Warwickshire, where I went to see a superb installation of sculptures by Henry Moore and Auguste Rodin, I happened to glance up in the building’s main foyer and saw the footprints of someone on the ceiling. Well, they weren’t actually on the ceiling, they were walking on the glass floor of the next level up, but from my point of view they appeared to be on the ceiling, if you understand me. And it was really rather surreal – you don’t often see seemingly disembodied feet walking across the ceiling.
Fast forward to two days ago and I was in Apple’s flagship store in Covent Garden, London (and very impressive that store is) when I glanced up and noticed another glass ceiling upon which several pairs of disembodied feet walked and stood still. I hadn’t seen feet like these in many years, if ever, and then along they come twice within a month. Strange.
Situations like this need capturing. One has to do it with a total disregard for any one else who happens to be standing near by, and who may have paused mid-step to wonder: ‘what the heck is that man photographing?’ Or worse. And every second that I was staring ceiling-wards, camera in hand, I expected the firm hand of security to tap me on the shoulder and escort me out of the building. But it didn’t happen. I stared, and I shot, and I left the building without a second glance. It can be difficult to shoot in situations like this: no-one likes being thought stupid, or risking invading someone’s privacy, or falling foul of regulations, or being marched off by security. But sometimes we just have to be bold and accept the risk: nothing ventured, nothing gained.
The first image in this post is from Compton Verney – the colours are warm and soft. In contrast, those taken in London were more industrial. Cold, contrasty, lacking colour – The type of image that I thought would look good in B&W. But I have mixed feelings about the conversions.
The only one that I think works in B&W is the last one in the gallery below – bizarrely it’s the one that happens to have the most overall original colour, or perhaps I should call that tint. Removing the colour in my opinion does create a more powerful image in that instance. But in the case of the other two, my feeling is that by removing the colour, the image loses an added dimension. Colour is important to their impact. What do you think?
This is a point that I am sure we won’t all agree on, but I would love to hear your opinion, so do please comment. All three of the London shots are shown below – in colour and then in B&W for comparison.
One last point: a very warm welcome to a considerable number of new subscribers/readers of this blog who have discovered me as a result of my recent post ‘Hello’ being featured by WordPress in ‘Around the World in Nine Photos’. I hope you will enjoy what you see and read here, and do please click the ‘Like’ button, or better still join in the conversation by making a comment.