When I turned my head to look more closely, I saw that there was a long oil slick on the water, so I stopped to take some photos for use in future editions of my Photographic Abstraction series. However, once I’d had a closer look at the images, I thought that a special edition to showcase the best would be a good idea. The first photo is a general shot of the river and has not been doctored in any way. The slick is clearly visible.
The following seven pictures are high-contrast, cropped versions of some of the pictures I took. They show sections of the slick from different positions and angles. Only #5 was taken from directly above, looking down. The others were shot at fairly shallow angles and include some reflection of the opposite bank of the river. It is interesting to compare these pictures with Rainbow (Photographic Abstraction #3), where an entirely different effect has been achieved. I attribute this to three factors: the nature of the light (sunny in the present examples, cloudy and dull in Rainbow; different disturbance patterns on the water surface; and, possibly, different pollutants (the slick in these photos appears to be of a lighter, less viscous liquid, possibly diesel or kerosene.
Of course I decry this kind of pollution, which occurs all too frequently in Hong Kong, but there is no point in crying over spilt milk, or in this case oil, especially when such a spill provides a splendid opportunity for some abstract photography.
Don’t forget to click on the first picture for a complete slideshow.