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Phil Douglis | all galleries >> Galleries >> Gallery Twenty Six : Using reflections to transform reality > Path of light, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, 2005
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Path of light, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, 2005

This image is essentially a photograph of reflected light. The three people in the boat provide the context, rather than the subject. I built this image around the way the evening sky and the setting sun were reflecting off the water, carving a gradual path of color through the shadows that seems to begin with pale blue and end in a rosy glow. That path expresses the idea here it represents a progression from one state to another. These abstracted people drifting along an Amsterdam canal seem to be symbolically moving towards us in a reverse direction. How we read meaning into the different shadings of color will determine what this image might say to us.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ20
1/250s f/4.0 at 22.1mm iso80 full exif

other sizes: small medium large original auto
Phil Douglis19-Jul-2006 22:04
This image means all the more to me because you chose to comment on it, Han. You live right there, in the midsts of such reveries. And maybe someday you will get that boat, and I will come to Amsterdam to find you floating on the golden canals. I don't believe in the rules composition, Han -- I compose my pictures to intensify the meaning of what I am trying to say, not to match the arbitrary rules of some textbook or camera club. Composition is organization to me, not aesthetics for the sake of aesthetics. For more of my idea on composition see Gallery Nine at
Guest 19-Jul-2006 14:41
i am glad you captured this, i call this "an image of reverie", conveying
a magical moment that "time flows backwards".
that's why you feel the boat is "moving towards us in a reverse direction"
this photo breaks the normal rules of symmatrical or triangular composition that people often use
instead, the magic of this photo is totally rely on the color and shades of water in the twlights,
the transit moment of a day
good shot! how strange, few people common on this one

canal, bridge, and bicycle
are what i choose to live in amsterdam for
i hope i can afford to buy a boat one day, hahaha
Phil Douglis29-Nov-2005 04:44
You are always welcome to leave comments here, Mia. Anonymously or not. Please keep coming, learning, and sharing.
Phil Douglis27-Nov-2005 07:40
To equate this image to the stages we pass through in our lives is quite fascinating, Mia. I, too, saw a progression from one state to another expressed in the gradual path of color dividing the shadows here. Thanks for suggesting that this picture functions for you as a metaphor for life's ups and downs. I deeply respect your commentary, Mia. You seem to be far more than "just an amateur photographer who enjoys haunting my galleries." Your comments are rich in ideas and always give me food for thought. I still wished I knew more about you -- you are as elusive as the ghost you claim to be.
Mia 26-Nov-2005 15:12
We all go through alternating exhilarating (warm light) and tough (pale blue light) periods in our lives - most of the time we are somewhere in between.
Note - Phil, in response to one of your previous comments - I have no gallery on the web for you to comment on. I am just an amateur photographer who enjoys visiting (or "haunting") your galleries.
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