What’s a Here without a There? We’ve talked before about how the ways we get to other places become as meaningful as those places themselves. Another architectural element of our modern landscape ripe for artistic interpretation is that of the bridge, your subject in this week’s photo challenge. Share your favorite shots on our Facebook page or on Instagram tagged #mymikescamera #halfweekhomework!
Floating, arched, suspended, and more, there are numerous, distinct forms of bridges available, and they can be found anywhere from remote islands to your local mall. (Any Coloradans remember the bridges over fountains in Buckingham Square?) As with all architecture, they tend to be either thoughtfully decorated or intriguingly industrial, so they’re a great subject from a visual/compositional perspective. Can you say leading lines?
The bridge is a testament to the part of the human spirit that refuses to accept temporary ways to solve a problem, yet most bridges are also constructed in such a way as to prevent the closure of the path below—stubborn determination meets compassionate concern. At the confluence, a new refuge can often be found (as Anthony Kiedis ruminated upon back in the early ’90s).
The best verb for what a bridge does is connect. As a photographer, this gives you an easy path to narrative in your image by highlighting the two elements being connected. As with any art form, people love to connect with people, and two people making a connection connects time and time again. (See: the continued success of romantic comedies and classical dramatic “comedies.”)
The places being connected have their own histories, of course. A bridge can connect you, across time itself, with some ancient culture or important historical figure.
Regardless of where or what’s being connected, remember that your goal is to bridge the gap between your image and your viewer… and if you don’t share your images, you won’t reach anyone! Happy shooting.
PS—I hope to see at least one shot of the Millenium Bridge, Denverites! That one’s a great subject, because its location can make finding a good composition tricky. See if you are up to the challenge!