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Phil Douglis | all galleries >> Galleries >> Gallery Twelve: Using color to express ideas > Sculpture, La Boca, Buenos Aires, Argentina, 2004
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Sculpture, La Boca, Buenos Aires, Argentina, 2004

Color is the most important element in this photograph as well. There are only two colors here the brownish statue and the softly shadowed blue wall behind it. The sculpture portrays a reflective mother carrying a child and the blue wall gives such reflection a cool context. La Boca is a popular neighborhood in Buenos Aires, largely because of the primary colors used to paint its buildings. I made this image because of the color contrast and the flow of light and shadow on that color. Together, they give both art and setting a sense of place and purpose.

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Phil Douglis08-Sep-2006 18:16
Thanks, Ramma and Chris, for seeing the beauty in this image. The sculptor created beauty in stone to begin the process. The owner of the building behind the sculpture intensifies it by painting his or her wall in a soothing blue color. I come into the equation at the end, taking a vantage point and shooting at a time of day so as to bond both statue and wall together. As Vera put it almost two years ago, it becomes "a siesta in the embrace of an azure sky."
Chris Sofopoulos08-Sep-2006 16:40
Beautiful contrast of colours and most of all this play with light and shadows!
Ramma 11-Mar-2006 12:16
One of the most beautiful pictures.
Phil Douglis01-Dec-2004 00:59
You turn nice phrase, friend Vera! I am delighted you relate this image to a blue sky. Carol saw a waterfall. I saw the contrasts between colors and between light and shadow. I find it fascinating that an artist created the sculpture, a property owner painted that wall blue, and nature made the tree and the light that flows through it. And then I arrived with my camera and found a spot from where I could tie all these elements together within a photograph that defines the essence of this Buenos Aires neighborhood.
Guest 26-Nov-2004 06:21
Siesta in the embrace of the azure sky. :-)
Phil Douglis23-Jul-2004 03:03
Thanks, Tami, for using the word "soothing" to describe the effect of this picture. I called the context added by the blue wall "cool", and two others felt that this image was "peaceful." Your twin contributions of "calming blue" and "soothing" offer two more interpretations of this image -- all of which shows us that an effective photograph can reveal many shadings of meaning. Each viewer defines its feeling and purpose in their own way. All the photographer does is to get the ball rolling. And that is one of the great strengths of this wonderfully expressive medium.
Tami22-Jul-2004 23:05
This is one of my favorites, I have a ton of them though ;) . The peaceful child, the reflective mother and calming blue make this picture "soothing".

Phil Douglis04-May-2004 16:36
Thanks, Tricia, for your comments. I did focus on the statue, however -- the lack of "clarity" you point out is the very nature of the shadowy softness of the stone itself. You make an excellent point regarding the relationship of the soft stone to the cool blue color and the dappled, shady light. All of these factors combine to give this image its mood of utter peacefulness.
Guest 04-May-2004 13:32
I think the composition in this photo is right on.
And, I'm glad the focus on the statue is not perfectly clear, thus adding to the element of softess and color/light/relationship.
Phil Douglis14-Mar-2004 20:53
Thanks, Ray, as always, for your comment. Without the play of light on that blue wall, this picture is only a description of a sculptor's work. Combined with the interplay of light and color, the statue takes on an entirely new meaning.
Guest 14-Mar-2004 19:33
The light play on the blue background makes this image. Great shot, Phil.
Phil Douglis26-Jan-2004 22:55
Color conveys emotion, Anna. Soft light blue is indeed the color of peace. (It is no accident that the UN has adopted this color as well.)
Carol E Sandgren26-Jan-2004 21:14
I think this image is one of your most beautiful here, Phil. It does evoke a peaceful feeling as Anna has expressed in her comment. So fitting a backdrop for this sculpture of a very content madonna and child. The shadows on the wall remind me of a waterfall at first glance and I can almost hear the peaceful sound of the water splashing down below.
Anna Yu26-Jan-2004 07:45
Peaceful color in the background with added interest of shadows.
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