E.J.Wilkins

24 Mar 2009 627 views
 
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photoblog image Parque das Nações, Lisbon

Parque das Nações, Lisbon


Rizoma (Rhizome II) by Antony Gormley

This sculpture isn't one I particularly like, but even so it's intriguing. The "legs" are the same size as people. The whole thing is much taller than it looks in this picture - I can't find the dimensions anywhere online, but I don't think it matters too much.

The title "Rhizome" is meant to relate to the repetition and replication of a shape, very much I suppose, in the way a plant rhizome replicates.

In the background is the huge Atlantic Pavilion and some of the flags - both of which were in - this picture - where, if you look really carefully, you can see this sculpture close to the water, behind the trees half way down on the right.
.....

There are quite a number of sculptures at Parque das Nações. Almost all were commissioned for the Expo 1998, and have stayed, making the place a bit of a treasure trove. Each time I go back I search for another one or two, I'm not sure if I'll ever find them all and record them well enough to share online.

As the area continues to be developed more artwork is being included, one of these new installations will be shown tomorrow.
.....

I've tried several times to take a decent photograph of this sculpture, but have failed each time.Every time I've found that to get far enough away and  get a clean background meant standing in deep shadow. (A wider, more expensive, lens would perhaps help.)

Believe it or not, this is the best of a bad bunch, but there's no real excuse for poor technique - I didn't even manage to get the camera vertical - hence the white sections to each side.

On the other hand, it's so easy for "purists" to ramble on about the "best time of day" to take pictures and so on, use this filter or that gizmo, but not everybody has them and, in reality, it isn't always possible to choose the time of day etc, nor is it always practical or possible to use a tripod. There are also other people to think about too, who also want to do the same, which is to take away a memory of what they're seeing.
.

Parque das Nações, Lisbon


Rizoma (Rhizome II) by Antony Gormley

This sculpture isn't one I particularly like, but even so it's intriguing. The "legs" are the same size as people. The whole thing is much taller than it looks in this picture - I can't find the dimensions anywhere online, but I don't think it matters too much.

The title "Rhizome" is meant to relate to the repetition and replication of a shape, very much I suppose, in the way a plant rhizome replicates.

In the background is the huge Atlantic Pavilion and some of the flags - both of which were in - this picture - where, if you look really carefully, you can see this sculpture close to the water, behind the trees half way down on the right.
.....

There are quite a number of sculptures at Parque das Nações. Almost all were commissioned for the Expo 1998, and have stayed, making the place a bit of a treasure trove. Each time I go back I search for another one or two, I'm not sure if I'll ever find them all and record them well enough to share online.

As the area continues to be developed more artwork is being included, one of these new installations will be shown tomorrow.
.....

I've tried several times to take a decent photograph of this sculpture, but have failed each time.Every time I've found that to get far enough away and  get a clean background meant standing in deep shadow. (A wider, more expensive, lens would perhaps help.)

Believe it or not, this is the best of a bad bunch, but there's no real excuse for poor technique - I didn't even manage to get the camera vertical - hence the white sections to each side.

On the other hand, it's so easy for "purists" to ramble on about the "best time of day" to take pictures and so on, use this filter or that gizmo, but not everybody has them and, in reality, it isn't always possible to choose the time of day etc, nor is it always practical or possible to use a tripod. There are also other people to think about too, who also want to do the same, which is to take away a memory of what they're seeing.
.

comments (19)

Simbolisasi of a balance. A work of art that's great.
EJWilkins: It's almost gymnastic isn't it.
  • Alan Rolfe
  • Great Britain (UK)
  • 24 Mar 2009, 07:09
LOL.. interesting to read your notes on the problems of taking the ideal photo..I have the same trouble! Is this from the guy who did the Angel of the North? A fascinating design.
EJWilkins: Yes, it's the same chap. He also stood some people on the beach at Southport, and on top of a few buildings in London.
  • Alan Rolfe
  • Great Britain (UK)
  • 24 Mar 2009, 07:11
By the way, Elie, do not have any software where you could crop this to remove the white spaces? GIMP is a freebie and quite poweerful, I believe.
EJWilkins: Yes, I have software (Gimp is good) but would have ended up with a tall thin picture. Tall thin pictures always seem to shrink when they're uploaded, which is why I left the sides "original size".
  • zed
  • Australia
  • 24 Mar 2009, 08:07
pretty is not the word to describe this sculpture, l think you got it right when you said it was intriguing. have to agree with you on all your comments of getting the right shot
EJWilkins: No, I don't think it's pretty either but "it's there" and that's what this picture is all about I suppose.
  • Philine
  • Germany
  • 24 Mar 2009, 10:15
I saw a sculpture of Antony Gormley, taken by Tim Hitchins in the rough North of England- serious, strong- and now a circus performer group, acrobats (how many?!)- with a touch of Mediterrenean flair- because it looks easier than it is in reality- the success of lang, hard working- a joy for the eyes like the snake-like lines on the ground- yes, we are under the sun of Portugal and the people living there are told to live a bit easierly like we Northgermans!
Thanks for your introduction- yes, photographing, too, may look for somebody easier than it is in reality- thanks for your hard, long working to create such a fine photograph!
EJWilkins: I think it's ten legs Philine
  • vintage
  • Australia
  • 24 Mar 2009, 10:17
I sometimes don't understand what is called art.Enjoy your time With Bill and Chris.I would like to me them one day.
EJWilkins: I don't understand it either, and wouldn't even pretend to - which I suppose makes me an art philistine!
Had a lovely day thanks smile
  • anniedog
  • United Kingdom
  • 24 Mar 2009, 10:29
I agree it's not the most attractive of Gormley's sculptures. Re the lines on the side, I see from the comments you have photo-editing software - surely it would be better to crop than have those annoying white lines? What's wrong with a long thin photo - it would accentuate the shape of the sculpture and you wouldn't lose anything important.
Ingrid
EJWilkins: Ah, it's to do with Shutterchance. If you upload a "tall thin" picture the site software takes over and shrinks it. An almost square picture doesn't get affected in the same way.
I did upload a version that had been edited to remove the white triangles but didn't like the end result. I know this picture "isn't good" by most standards, and would be heavily marked down by a competition judge, but I've somehow come to quite like it even though I'm not entirely sure why. Maybe because it's controversial, which is something I don't usually do wink
Nicely captured. A great sense of balance here!
EJWilkins: Yes, and some very careful welding too!
  • Aussie
  • Cedar Vale
  • 24 Mar 2009, 12:18
Hope you had a nice day with the 'boys'
EJWilkins: A lovely day thanks, excellent company and we were lucky with the weather too smile
Like you Ellie...I'm not with this art at all..but I think you got the best out of it.
EJWilkins: Yep, and I've even come to like the white triangles, they're almost as controversial as the sculpture grin
I really do agree with your final paragraph Ellie, I get fed up with judges saying that at my camera club, we can't all be in the right place at the right time. Rant over.
This reminds me a bit of the symbol on the Manx flag, the legs of Mann. Very good shot.
EJWilkins: "legs of Mann" - I wonder if that's where he got the idea?
We could have a good long rant if we wanted, not least about the "judges" that look at "beginners" pictures, screw up their eyes to squint and then mumble something about absolutely sharp focus on a moving target!
Very intriguing.

Hope you had a good day with Chris and Bill. And survived!
EJWilkins: Yes, it is "intriguing"

A lovely day, thank you smile
  • blackdog
  • United Kingdom
  • 24 Mar 2009, 17:22
Always difficult when your subject is in shadow and the background is light and busy. The easy waty is to use your flash on the camera to "fill in" some of the shadow.

My approach - for what its worth - would be to expose correctly for the statue, and use a smaller aperure to reduce DOF, both of which will emphasis the subject (the statue) and remove detail from the background. Finally I would use B&W to bring out the structure and form of the statue.

Maybe of some help ;o)
EJWilkins: Good points Mike, and yes I agree with you. smile

I think you'll see I used the widest possible aperture for this particular lens - 40-150mm. In order to get in the whole sculpture I had to be too far away for fill flash to be any use, which is why the "ideal world" scenario doesn't always work.
  • Astrid
  • Netherlands
  • 24 Mar 2009, 17:46
I don't like the word 'interesting' I told Tracy once, if I use this word you are in trouble, I never ever would that do to you....I like the composition, the artist must have had a kind of 'vision'.....
Hope you had a great day with Chris and Bill, I have many dear memories about my meeting with them.
EJWilkins: Oooh, I don't know, "interesting" would have been a good word to use Astrid wink

We had a lovely day, thank you smile
  • Louis
  • South Africa
  • 24 Mar 2009, 19:14
Oh dear me, what can I say. Why didn't you crop the picture to take out the white sections?

As a born purist, I would say there are different angles to approach this sculpture. You could for instance stand on the sunny side and shoot towards the shadow, you can even lay down on the other side and shoot at an upwards angle.

Except for the white sections, this is a good picture, you have managed to capture colour and detail against strong backlight.
EJWilkins: I didn't crop out the triangles because the whole thing looked wrong afterwards, the picture was out of proportion. Also, uploading "tall and thin" didn't work because of site software. This really is the best - in my opinion.

Viewing the sculpture from the other side means the background is even fussier - there's a building there with lots of angles. It's difficult to get far enough away because there's water in the way! Shooting upwards doesn't work either because the end result is confusing. You really would have to stand there yourself to understand.

Sounds as if I'm wriggling, but I also know all too well that I'd probably think exactly the same as you if somebody else had uploaded/shared this particular photograph. wink
  • Chris
  • England
  • 24 Mar 2009, 20:49
This is intriguing indeed Ellie: Antony Gormley is not someone to be taken lightly
EJWilkins: and nor is this sculpture, made of steel I'm sure it's quite weighty
  • Louis
  • South Africa
  • 24 Mar 2009, 20:50
Yay, ye wriggle well. You are leaving me with the impression that you first reduce size for the upload and then do straightening. The other way round will work for sure.

If you are using Photoshop CS2 or CS3 for straightening, there is a feature called 'Scale' that you can use to fill the picture into the same frame size that you are working with - after straightening.

About the direction that you shoot from, I normally add a rider about not being on site. So yes the other views may have been worse, but easier to loose in DOF. Towards sunlit part will be less easy to DOF and will create a silhouette instead of the good exposure that you have of the statue now.

The upwards angle is not a favourite amongst the british, I am aware tongue Imagine what they would say smile

And remember - I just pop ideas around, because I don't know what your circumstances are from the shoot right through to uploading. And you are now obviously too far away to experiment with whatever is said.

I trust that you had an interesting day with Lord Baconbutt and the Earl of Twiddle.
He's a lad that Gormley. I must say this doesn't look very appealing!
Nice shot. Could you handle Chris and Bill at the same time LOL smile

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