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Phil Douglis | all galleries >> Gallery Nine: Composition -- putting it together > Road to Angkor Wat, Cambodia, 2000
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Road to Angkor Wat, Cambodia, 2000
19-FEB-2000

Road to Angkor Wat, Cambodia, 2000

This ancient temple complex deep in the Cambodian jungle stands at the end of a long causeway. I waited for some Buddhist monks, wearing vividly colored robes, to move into the picture, and used the telephoto end of the zoom lens to foreshorten the distance between them and the temple. To me, these marching monks are the subjects and focal points of this picture, and the great temple of Angkor Wat, its context. Three layers of meaning work together in this image as well -- the colorful monks dominate the foreground, the crowd of tourists walking before them fill the middleground, and the temple of Angkor Wat itself rises under tropical skies in the background.

Kodak DC4800
1/350s f/9.5 at 17.7mm full exif

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Phil Douglis23-Feb-2004 04:11
You are right, Anna -- this picture is not about the temple as much as it is about those monks. And no, I did not have to wait for them to pass by -- I saw those robes way up in front of me, and ran forward on the causeway to catch up to them. And yes, I did consider cropping out the construction scaffolds on the left, but such a crop would have destroyed the "long, long road" effect of that ancient railing sweeping into the picture from the lower left hand corner. And this, in turn, would have diminished the "timelessness" of the picture --pilgrims coming to Angkor have been marching down this long causeway for centuries. So I kept the scaffolds in.
Anna Yu22-Feb-2004 19:45
Wonderful touch with monks in the foreground. How did you know they were going to pass by? I think the towers of the temple are like the marching people in form. A feeling of timelessness. Did you consider cropping slightly on the left to remove the metal things?
Regards/Anna
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