<<< o >>>travelling north west 31 comments + add yours

This is the first shot I've taken in ages that I'm truly pleased with, mostly I think because it fits my idea of what this sort of shot should be about ... if that makes sense. Put another way: I travel to work by train two or three times a week – sometimes more, sometimes less – and if I'm not reading or dozing I like to watch the other passengers as they idly watch the world go by. I guess, is some ways, that this sort of shot is a double reflection: their thoughts reflected in their expression, their expressions reflected in the window of the train. Anyway, philosphical rambling aside, I'm pleased with this one.

shutter speed
shooting mode
exposure bias
metering mode
image quality
RAW converter
10.57pm on 11/11/05
Canon 20D
EF 50mm f/1.8 II
aperture priority
C1 Pro
1x1 + reflections [glass] + between destinations + people
comment by GHOP. at 05:56 PM (GMT) on 13 November, 2005

i'm pleased with it too. maybe even more if it is less saturated.

comment by Patrick at 06:01 PM (GMT) on 13 November, 2005

I really like the tone of this one! Really good shot!

comment by Justus at 06:19 PM (GMT) on 13 November, 2005

I think the shot is very well set up. It seems like it could be a tad more in focus but I'm not complaining and clearly you aren't either. Is there anything to be gained by having it in colour or is it too much of a distraction?

comment by EOS Chaos at 08:22 PM (GMT) on 13 November, 2005

Works for me. The distant look in the passengers face is perfect for this shot. The toning suits the image just right. Another winner in my opinion. - [Chuks]

comment by ROB at 09:07 PM (GMT) on 13 November, 2005

Outstanding. The double reflection is amazing and the steely face looking off into your scene is perfect. Exactly the kind of shot that draws me back here so regularily.

comment by Tristan at 09:08 PM (GMT) on 13 November, 2005

i can't really tell what's going on in this picture, ie. it doesn't speak for itself without the description text.

comment by Kevin at 11:35 PM (GMT) on 13 November, 2005

I like the picture more after you explained it but I can't stand that 1X1 cropping. Its supposed to be a double reflection but the cropping makes it seem like I'm not getting the whole story or all the information. It's very hard to care what the reflection is when I feel like I'm missing half the story.

comment by djn1 at 12:03 AM (GMT) on 14 November, 2005

Kevin (and Tristan): the fact that you're not getting the whole story is part of the point. I don't know the whole story either: I don't know exactly what she's looking at – it's out of frame – and I don't know what she's thinking. For me, there's not too much more to it than that: it's an observation of a common scene, that invites you to speculate – at least that's my intention ... more of a question rather than an answer.

comment by djn1 at 12:06 AM (GMT) on 14 November, 2005

Kevin: sorry, forgot to mention the crop ... I cropped the top third from this one, so you're only missing more of the reflected lights from the train and a grey, dull sky.

comment by Sanjin at 12:54 AM (GMT) on 14 November, 2005

I really like it. One of your top shots...

comment by KK at 12:56 AM (GMT) on 14 November, 2005

I am pleased with this shot as well. Like you, I like observing ppl, making stories about them in my head :)

comment by Chris at 01:21 AM (GMT) on 14 November, 2005

This is fantastic - one of my fav. of yours to date..

comment by nuno f at 07:39 AM (GMT) on 14 November, 2005

I'm also pleased with the results. I remember seeing some photos that you've take some time ago and that are very similar to this one. Somehow, this shot it's more emotional as it transmites a small portion of the emotions of the subject captured. The tonning that you've apply its also fantastic and it was an excellent choice. : )

comment by Paul at 08:53 AM (GMT) on 14 November, 2005

I love this shot. It captures a mood, so perfectly, that I've experienced many times before when travelling by train myself.

comment by pierre at 09:01 AM (GMT) on 14 November, 2005

Yep, double reflection, I've never thought about that.
Cool stuff

comment by prasoon at 09:34 AM (GMT) on 14 November, 2005

A nice exposure n beautifully framed - am really impressed.

comment by wanderingemini at 09:37 AM (GMT) on 14 November, 2005

fabulous. reminds me of my years in new york.

comment by Aidemedia - Dan at 10:02 AM (GMT) on 14 November, 2005

Great reflection, well spotted and I like the fact that you don't know what they are looking at. I like the processing technique you've used, it works well. I too don't like the crop much, but what can you do when you've probably got another seat in the way, or like you said just more of the same reflection upwards. I think I might have left that in so you had a portrait shape, and the face would have been lost in the reflection, which may look different, but cool...

comment by Ioannis at 11:05 AM (GMT) on 14 November, 2005

I can't say I really like the shot because it does not mean much to me. However, when I was travelling by train to work I did take the same notice of people. It was the summer back then, and expressions were truly different. This shot is emotional in a different way, which makes it interesting to anyone who travels by train, I guess.

comment by Rod Thomas at 01:02 PM (GMT) on 14 November, 2005

Interesting shot, and even more so after reading your description. I do like shots that allow the viewer to ponder the story behind the shot, and to even make up their own.

Your description of your train rides reminds me of our family's pass-the-travel-time habbit of picking out a person (or couple, or family) at an airport and quietly deciding their whole life's story based purely on what little we glean from our brief visual inspection of them. A unique travel game requiring no cards, paper, pencils, nor dice. Keeps the kids entertained for hours... adults too! :-)

comment by Kev Rosie at 03:39 PM (GMT) on 14 November, 2005


A great shot which has a real 'dreamy' quality about it. However, have you tried cropping the top third off? For me, losing the strip lights and frame reflection made it even more involving.

Another example of why I visit your site every day.

comment by John Washington at 03:51 PM (GMT) on 14 November, 2005

A great photo Dave.

The subject is indeed cptured 'deep in thought'

The composition works for me because the lines naturally lead you into the picture as they converge. I think that a crop would ruin the photo and I assume that you composed this picture with that in mind.

very well done.

comment by John Washington at 03:55 PM (GMT) on 14 November, 2005

I might add

Personally I think you are maturing as a photographer by experimenting. I guess you could continue to post chromasia style images which I am sure you will from time to time.

I feel as though these images just have more about them. You know you can always produce the old stuff but it is nice to see a progression.

only my opinion.

comment by drdubosc at 04:34 PM (GMT) on 14 November, 2005

The question for me is: is the composition so bad it's good? It's never going to sit still, that's for sure. At the moment, it actually makes me feel physically uncomfortable. I'll have to come back to it for a couple of days before I know.

comment by tread at 05:04 PM (GMT) on 14 November, 2005

A beaut. content-wise, composition and contrast...great.

comment by John Washington at 06:06 PM (GMT) on 14 November, 2005

From the point of view of placing main elements on the thirds it perhaps wouldn't pass the crits in consumer photography magazines.

In the real world though this composition has surely come about as a result of the content not from playing safe and adhearing to convention.

Earnst Haas once said that what interests him most is what is going on at the edges of a picture. The placement of the subject against the right side creates what is known as tension. It does make the picture somewhat uncomfortable but that is why it works.

Really - we have all been conditioned to freely accept images that conform to rules of composition. Surely he/she who challenges these rules will learn much more about the whole aspect of composition.

comment by bob at 08:07 PM (GMT) on 14 November, 2005

DJ --- I'm loving these last shots --- wow -- really really nice -- evokes so many things for me -- and very inspirational --- hope all is well...

comment by djn1 at 08:19 PM (GMT) on 14 November, 2005

Thanks everyone. I was pleased with this one and think I'll probably pursue this theme in the future.

comment by drdubosc at 11:15 PM (GMT) on 14 November, 2005

JW, couldn't agree more, composition is *all* about tension. A lot of he best pictures are on the point of pulling themselves apart. And edge elements always carry disproportionate weight, zing more. ( cf the colour field painters, Barnett Newman, Jules Olitsky ). In fact, that caused so much difficulty for pure cubism that Braque and Picasso wound up not painting up to the edges at all. But tension does require opposing forces. Pull just one way, you fall over, and tension is lost.

comment by CouCou at 07:29 AM (GMT) on 16 November, 2005

Very nice shot.
Capture perfectly the train journey atmosphere :)
Thanks for sharing it.

comment by cy at 04:54 AM (GMT) on 28 April, 2007

this is my fav. so far on this collection. there is something about the way that he is almost lost to the scenery that is quit nice. i also like the absence of his eyes, it is like trying to remeber someone you have scene and you can not recall the details. i think however that it would be stroonger without the florescent lights across the top even though i realize that they do bring yur eye into the image. as to the tension...i dont see it that way. i see it more like these victims of storms that loss everything over night. the flattened emotion on his face and his positioning seem more like he is the narrator of the story. there is a lot of ways i guess to interrupt this one. a sign of a good image.