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Phil Douglis | all galleries >> Gallery Eighty-seven: Impressions of Charleston, South Carolina > New Cooper River Bridge, Charleston, South Carolina, 2013
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New Cooper River Bridge, Charleston, South Carolina, 2013

New Cooper River Bridge, Charleston, South Carolina, 2013

This bridge, the third longest cable-stayed bridge in the Western Hemisphere, links Charleston with the neighboring town of Mt. Pleasant via US Route 17. The bridge is two miles long, and spans more than 1,500 feet of the Cooper River. Opened in 2005, its diamond shaped towers soar 186 feet above the river. It has eight lanes, four in each direction, plus a 12-foot wide bicycle and pedestrian path. It was built to withstand hurricanes and earthquakes. I travelled its length several times, and this image, made through the front window of a moving car, best captures its striking design. I converted the image from color to black and white to accentuate the rhythmic patterns of the wires and silver clad towers, contrasting them to the rain clouds that fill the sky beyond.

FujiFilm X10
1/600s f/5.0 at 17.3mm iso100 full exif

other sizes: small medium large original
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Phil Douglis18-Sep-2013 00:15
Thanks, Mo -- a suspension bridge is always a study in rhythm. The trick is to make those rhythms work photographically. In this case my vantage point allows me to isolate and emphasize them.
monique jansen17-Sep-2013 21:20
THE,rhythm is,great
Phil Douglis04-Sep-2013 18:43
Thanks, Carol, for your comment. By including those dotted roadway lines, my low point of view conveys the feeling of motion that you mention. I am looking forward to seeing the new eastern span of the Bay Bridge when I next visit SF.
I am sure your own interpretation of that bridge will feature, as always, its special design qualities.
Carol E Sandgren04-Sep-2013 05:10
Great perspective, Phil! I do get the feeling of actually driving across this bridge with the low point of view. Next time you come to SF you will notice the new eastern span in the Bay Bridge, just opened yesterday. This image reminds me of our bridge here with its outreaching cables. I am very eager to use the new bike/walk lane that is only thus far partially finished so I can photograph the stunning design.
Phil Douglis01-Sep-2013 21:06
As you must know, I was mumbling stuff like "look, a Jack Davis!!!" as I made this "drive-by" picture. (Of course, nobody in the car knew that I was simply expressing the name of a drive-by shooting friend of yours, Tim.) For you and me, the very mention of that name simply means a fleeting split second chance at a shot that offers no repeats. And yes, I did want to bring a feeling of "travel" to the shot. If the slight tilt of the structure can do that, I will be happy to take it.
Tim May01-Sep-2013 16:39
The tilt really adds to the sense of travel.
Phil Douglis31-Aug-2013 17:29
Thanks, Sam and Stephanie, for these comments. "Drive by" imagery such as this picture calls for spontaneous recognition and response to the subject. I saw the wonderful glow on the second tower and instantly decided to build my picture around it. The layering here is critical. I wanted the first tower and its cables to fill the foreground and frame that glowing second tower in the distance. Fortunately my camera was able to lock focus on the truck in front of us, which worked perfectly.
Stephanie31-Aug-2013 11:56
Super "drive-by" bridge shooting! Impressive architecture! V
Sam Rua31-Aug-2013 03:59
Very nice capture and comp.
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