Ugly Pole

by João
(São Gonçalo, RJ, Brazil)

I think that poles that are used in distribution of energy are among the ugliest things man has ever made. I've already seen some poles with hundreds of cables coming in and out.

Anyway, I was snapping some pictures of my street, and I saw beautiful clouds in the sky (it was almost sunset). However, that ugly thing was there... Why not just use it in the picture? At home, I thought: Why not in black and white?

That's the final result. ;-)

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Many times I myself have looked at something that is in itself completely ugly, but wondered if there is a photo opportunity there. Rubbish piled up on a street corner, graffiti, a car yard . . . in fact I've lost count of them.

I do remember though how many of them I have actually kept – one. Just one. It happened to be a photo of a wall that was plastered in advertising posters. The posters were colourful, all higgledy-piggledy, and in print, had a certain charm.

As for the others, they never quite came off. I feel the same is true of João's photo here. I know how he must have felt – nice sky, ugly cables, but somehow interesting. I just don't feel it has come off.

The main thing missing I think is the simplicity. Imagine if there were a spot where João could have photographed one set of wires running into the distance, diagonally across the shot. I think it could have worked.

The thing spoiling it for me is that there is too much going on – two sets of wires, the lamp posts, the building in the bottom left . . . there's just too much. Some heavy duty cloning may be able to rescue it, but ideally all the clutter would have been removed by getting a better angle when the photo was shot. You can read digital photography tutorial on how to repair photos with the clone tool here.

The thing I applaud here though is João's approach – "not sure if there is a picture here, but I'll give it a go". That's something I like in a photographer, so well done João, and thanks for the submission!


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Mar 23, 2008
by: Anonymous

I think there is something here. I think this photo is OK.

Maybe cloning out some of the extra wires would be good for the photo. There are lots of them there so that might be difficult.

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