Sunday, 21 November 2010

A-Bomb Dome, Hiroshima

This is one of the most interesting historical places in Japan. Partly because of its unfortunate recent history, but also because Hiroshima, completely rebuilt since 1945, is a very pleasantly laid out city split into several leafy sections by the many rivers that flow through the suburbs to its ports.
Most tourists come to the city to view the Ground Zero site, the Peace Museum, and the A-Bomb dome, now a symbolic reminder to the rest of the world of what happened here in August 1945.
A significant global peace movement has subsequently sprung up around Japan, and the world, to try to prevent governments developing the spread of nuclear weapons. 

I have visited Hiroshima twice now and still experience mixed emotions when I see pictures of world leaders visiting the Peace Center - the very people who  spout platitudes to 'peace', while continuing to develop weapons and derisive public policies in their own countries.
Call me a cynic but it's these people who are the root cause. You can almost smell the hypocrisy emanating from the recorded images of smiling faces. Till this visit I'd shot everything in glorious technicolor but now, on this most recent trip I tried shooting in black-and-white, and even made an HDR composite (top) which I think works effectively.
Converting to BW is a technique worth trying just as an alternative to colour. Sometimes it works, sometimes not, but you have to do it first before you can decide.
In this case black-and-white worked better than my color version because I could lend greater emphasis to the clouds than in the colour version.

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