The brisk night air pushes its way down into the crooks and crevices of her lungs. She can feel the close, warm, dirty air of the bar being pushed out of her and she breathes deep, holding it in as she fights back the tears. She turns, puts her head down and begins to walk. The energy of the city tries to lift her but lead in her belly will not let it. She has walked away from him for the last time, but somehow… somehow it doesn’t feel like the last anything. This, is the beginning.
Oh why weightless as I close my eyes? Oh why the ceiling opens in disguise? Such a painful trip to find out this is it -Ben Folds “Cologne”
When my wife and I sat down at this table in the Swan in Victoria I was transfixed by the big old building across the street. I knew I wanted a picture of it but I also knew that I wanted something more than what I would get if I went out into the street and took a photograph from the sidewalk. I wanted the building to be a part of a story and from where I was sitting I began to see that I had a chance to build an image with lots of layers, lots of depth. I knew that I would be dealing with reflections so I just decided to embrace them. I started by adding the salt and pepper shakers to the right side of the frame. I knew that I was going to leave the window frame in the shot so I needed something to balance the visual weight. The fact that they are substantially shorter than the visual anchor on the left side of the frame helps to reenforce the energy of the image which is moving towards the vanishing point at the right of the frame. I set my camera on the table to keep it steady during the long exposures but it was too low so I crumpled up the napkin and propped up the lens to get the right angle. Focus in these conditions is almost impossible for AF so I set it manually and fired off a frame every time someone walked by. I probably took 70+ frames during supper to get this one. There was a very distracting for sale sign on the building that I cloned out and I played with the tonal values to increase the texture and contrast in the building. The blurred image of the woman walking by adds to the surrealism of the reflections reaching out into the street. I am really happy with how it turned out.