Journey

It seems only fair – or is that just coincidentally ironic – that my first analysis here in some six weeks will be the farewell picture from my friend Aftab Uzzaman (aftab.), as he heads off once more to the wider world…

Journey As with so many of Aftab’s images, this has both an immediate visual impact in the dynamic range encompassed by the image, and a long tail of attraction in the compelling composition.

The split of the image into two halves – top and bottom – but with slightly different weighting to how those two areas work, creates a strong draw to the centre line, and the infinite distance it embraces. Effectively, a diptych.

In the top half, we have strong diagonal in the fiery texture of the clouds, from the upper right, leading us down until it reaches the left golden ratio, then angling back across the frame to the right edge. This gives a sense of curvature to the flow into the image.

In the bottom half, this is mirrored, though only in principle and effect. The elements that achieve the same lead-in are very different. The log anchors in the foreground, providing interest to draw us across the rough ground. Again, the golden ratio is used, but this time the right-side one. The curvature of that line combines with the flow of footsteps and tide lines to draw us, once more, across the frame to the right, into the “corner” where the two halves meet on that side.

Of course, the effect created on the image by the limited palette with it’s vibrant contrast conveys a strong mood of excitement and unknown, while still being calm. Additionally, the inclusion of the silhouetted individual adds a sense of time to the flow – the position is not so perfectly balanced on golden ratios as to hold the figure in place, so he is being dragged by time to the inevitability of that far right-side destination.

Yet another stunning piece of work.

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