Saturday, September 07, 2013

Another view of fog

click photo to enlarge
Today's photograph was taken about seventy yards from and a few minutes before the shot in the previous post. And, where that image was captured with the sun behind me, this one was taken contre jour. That fact, the nature of the subject and the conversion of an essentially monochrome colour photograph into very definite black and white has resulted in this image acquiring a quite different mood. The previous shot has a slightly melancholic touch but it's essentially neutral, wistful or even slightly upbeat with the intrusion of that warming sunlight. However, here the stark gravestones silhouetted against the misty west end of the church is loaded with associations that, I can't help thinking, are largely the result of certain writers and a whole slew of horror and mystery films.

People such as Edgar Allen Poe and Charles Dickens knew that there is nothing like a fog or mist to evoke a feeling of cold, menace or fear. Think of Pip and Magwitch in the misty Kent marshes in the 1946 version of "Great Expectations". Better yet think back to how Guy Green, the Oscar winning cinematographer on that film depicted the scenes, and how influential his work was for succeeding generations of film makers such as John Carpenter. And then consider how these images have affected how the man or woman in the street views a misty churchyard. From Bram Stoker's "Dracula" to the latest teen horror, the combination of fog and a graveyard have become, in the popular mind, synonymous with supernatural dread. Of course, none of this influenced me in any way as I carefully composed and processed this photograph. Really. Just as it wasn't a factor in this photograph of a "House of Correction" or this one of a ruined church. Honestly!

photograph and text © Tony Boughen

Camera: Sony RX100
Mode: Aperture Priority
Focal Length: 18.9mm (51mm - 35mm equiv.)
F No: f5.6
Shutter Speed: 1/400
ISO: 125
Exposure Compensation:  -0.7 EV
Image Stabilisation: On