We know what they are, and what they mean. Do they mean something else here?
A symbol is a sign which represents something else. A red cross might suggest an idea, or even an ideal. The symbol ‘2’ might represent a duality, the possibility of another.
We identify with symbols (flags or crosses, for example). They give us a basis for understanding who we are, what is our place in the world.
Does the placing of a symbol within a frame constrain it? Placing two disparate symbols within a frame could alter the meaning of both. Or could it?
I have to admit straight off the bat that I am not a landscape photographer. I should also say that I don’t really like looking at landscape photographs. I can appreciate and understand the effort and skill which goes into producing stunning landscape photography; getting up at dawn, choosing appropriate filters and lenses, trekking to the ideal location, waiting for the perfect light, returning again the next day for better light. No, that’s not for me.
When I am out and about with a camera, although I, like most people, will be drawn to the vista before me, I often end up looking for the details around me; the fragments of a scene which can stimulate the imagination to visualise the whole panorama, without showing it.
The image above is a case in point. It is simply a ‘No Entry’ sign. But where could it be? What else could be nearby? The viewer can build the scene in their mind’s eye which will be biased by what they have seen themselves, by what experience they have, maybe by what they might know – or think they know – about me.
When you look at this image, what else do you see outside the frame?