self portrait

A city at sunset through a window. Cars, trains, building but no humans except for my own reflection in the window.

A city at sunset through a window. Cars, trains, building but no humans except for my own reflection in the window.
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Winner in Uniquely You in Black & White Photo Challenge
Winner in Unusual and creative selfie! Photo Challenge
Outstanding Creativity
thatunicorngal Oveone ricklecompte gman176 tjmclaren_8195 EmilyEthereal JayneBug +5
Peer Award
GeraintI dragon3 glenmarshall MaggieClaire Ifigeneia_Vasileiadis
Absolute Masterpiece
PORNrasanaga matthew.eden photogijoe MjBain
Superb Composition
Free-Spirit ArtTB loveMustangs jptogga
Top Choice
kenderby Zeepix waynemilburn
Superior Skill


gman176 PORNrasanaga

Top ClassTM

Where Is The Face Photo ContestTop 20 class
Selfies In Black and White Photo ContestTop 30 class
Selfies In Black and White Photo ContestTop 30 class week 1
Black And White Compositions Photo Contest vol1Top 20 class week 2
Redefine Selfies Photo ContestTop 20 class
Redefine Selfies Photo ContestTop 20 class week 2
Redefine Selfies Photo ContestTop 10 class week 1
Social Exposure Photo Contest Vol 7Top 20 class
Social Exposure Photo Contest Vol 7Top 10 class week 1
Faceless Photo ContestTop 30 class


2 Comments | Report
NatureLoverJJWal PRO+
NatureLoverJJWal June 07, 2017
Wow great way to capture shadow. Congratulations on your award!
MjBain PRO
MjBain October 08, 2019
congrats on the wins! a great shot.

Behind The Lens

This photo was taken on the 12th floor of an office building in downtown Oakland. It is a place where I travel for business meetings at least once a month, and I often am one of the last ones to leave the building before taking a taxi to catch a train back to my home.
I took this photo at sunset. Most everyone else had left the building but I had several hours until my train would arrive and I preferred to work there rather than the train station. The office I was in had a picture window with a wonderful view of the city, and I enjoyed watching the coming of night through that window.
On this particularly day, there was a light cloud cover, and that helped to produce a spectacular sunset. Golden light flooded the city. and when I walked to the window to watch it, the feeling I got was almost surreal. The light was beautiful but from my vantage point people seemed to be absent from the scene. No witness but me, alone in a corporate office building, a wanderer between cities, waiting to catch the next train.
I used my iPhone to get this shot. I had a DSLR with me but I feared that I would lose the light if I unpacked it and took the time to get set up with my tripod. So I grabbed my iPhone instead. I wanted to produce a self-portrait using my reflection in the window, bathed in beautiful light, that conveyed the sense of loneliness or isolation that I felt at the moment.
The moment inspired me--the light, the seemingly empty city, my sense of isolation. I travel a lot for my work, and while this allows me to see and do many interesting things, it also involves much time away from family and friends.
The image was converted to black and white in Photoshop and then enhanced with Silver Efex Pro. Black and white communicates through light, lines, shadows and shapes and allows for an intensity of form that color can obscure. Black and white is also suitable for a kind of gritty or grunge effect, and these factors seemed just right for the mood I wanted to communicate.
In my camera bag
I am not normally an iPhone photographer, although I carry an iPhone in my bag along with one of my Nikon cameras (d750 or d810) and several lenses, extra batteries, cards, lens cloths, rain cover, snacks, etc.
Don't be afraid to try something new and to experiment. I wasn't sure this image would turn out the way I wanted it to, particularly since I was using an iPhone, but I tried to capture the moment and feeling anyway. I thought carefully about composition, deciding to put my reflection in the middle of the scene and focused the camera so that it would capture clearly both the reflection in the window and the scene outside. I liked the sense of the Inside and outside converging, the isolation of my room echoed by the emptiness of the city.

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