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Phil Douglis | all galleries >> Galleries >> Gallery Fifty: Using silhouettes as abstract symbols and metaphors > Tourists departing Old Faithful Inn, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, 2008
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Tourists departing Old Faithful Inn, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, 2008

Their body language tells the story here. The silhouetted tourists, weighed down by duffels and backpacks, are so intent on getting home that they won’t even glance at the rising steam of the Old Faithful geyser finishing an eruption in the background. One tourist holds an iPod in her free hand, and appears to be either talking or singing. Yet for the moment she is standing still. The other tourist has a foot in the air as she brings up the rear. Meanwhile, the glowing lanterns over the main entrance of the hotel balance the abstraction with a touch of reality.

Leica V-Lux 1
1/400s f/7.1 at 65.1mm iso100 full exif

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Phil Douglis19-Oct-2008 19:04
I agree -- nature and commercialism don't mix. However, the national park service does its best to walk a delicate line between making these wonders easily available to the public, while at the same time, protecting and preserving them. Although commercialism enters the picture, it is a relatively small price to pay. At least Yellowstone allows only one concessionaire, Xanterra, to operate hotels, shops, and restaurants in the park. And because Xanterra (the successor to the Fred Harvey Company) holds such concessions at many other National Parks as well, their environmental footprint is carefully regulated.
Carol E Sandgren19-Oct-2008 18:42
This image really does tell the story of tourism. An additional thought I had.... it seems sad to me that such great natural phenonomenon events have been wrangled into a commecial envirnonment. How many beautiful natural events must you pay to see these days?? The fact that commercialism takes over nature is just sad to me. Your image really does demonstrate this to me.
Phil Douglis18-Oct-2008 23:28
I noticed the couple in the background as well. They did not have a bus to catch. Yes, this image does represent closure -- they are moving on to another place or perhaps going home, and they have no more interest in Yellowstone. Old Faithful is not even worth a passing glance. They've already seen it.
Tim May18-Oct-2008 22:15
And in the background there are two tourists watching the end of the eruption - they are not yet done with Old Faithful - as these two are - I like that image completes the act of tourism - the leaving and going home with your ipod.
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