129 – A Train To Cry

Unfortunately it’s back to slaughter. The Story of the Day is, well, not a story, but a link to The Times of India‘s coverage of the dreadful attack on the Samjhauta Express, and another one to Pakistan’s Daily Times.

Why this one? There was a variety to choose from today. Thailand, Iraq, and I would be very surprised if that’s all. What makes this strike, on the very day before the Pakistani foreign minister’s scheduled visit to India, even more terrible than everything else, is that it was an attack solely undertaken to undermine peace efforts between the two states. It was not meant as retaliation for some perceived injustice, it was killing intended for one single purpose: to prolong killing.

This image may look like having been made to accompany the story, but in fact it was by chance. I came by this intricately shaped grate in Vienna’s MuseumsQuartier, the new center of modern art. I made several exposures with the Nikon 50/1.8, some at f8, some at f1.8, one of each per framing. This is an overlay of such a pair, with all sorts of blending modes and Lab color manipulations applied.

Originally I had intended a psychedelic look with all colors of the rainbow, then I changed my mind for a continuation of the “Bloody Dangerous“/”Bloody Romantic” series, and finally, after having read about the terror attack, I felt the need for a statement.

The title is of course Dylan’s fantastic “It Takes A Lot To Laugh It Takes A Train To Cry” from the album “Highway 61 Revisited“, but this is not the Song of the Day. The honor must be to Cat Steven’s “Peace Train“. In light of the events it’s text almost sounds cynical, but still, this is not the time to give up on Utopia. Less than ever.

4 thoughts on “129 – A Train To Cry”

  1. Your image strikes a chord. A familar rythmic chord to which I can relate.

    I love simplistic rythmic imagery and this one is first rate. Also, I respect your decision to not make this a multicolored image. Singular color schemes often work better for this kind of thing and I believe this image is an excellent case in point.



  2. Are you familiar with the work of Pierre Bonnard? He was an important influence upon Henri Cartier-Bresson. Critics have called his primary mood,that of elegy.One wrote that he was a painter of the disappearance of pleasure.

    This is a very pleasurable image. The curves are sensual, the colors warm, even hot. Yet your interpretation of it is bitter. It’s an interpretation which doesn’t resonate with me. How odd, you sensed a mood at the moment of creation, but I received a very different one. I wonder about the disconnect.

    Regardless, it’s a powerful abstract image. I just don’t see Pierre Bonnard in it.


  3. It’s a beautiful image, Andreas. You did a great job merging and manipulating the multiple exposures to create something wonderful.

    Of course, one can see an abstract association with train tracks here, and thus a link to the story of the day. But the train I see in this image is a train of happiness–a train carrying excited passengers to see their loved ones: a train full of gaily wrapped packages; a train carrying goods to market; a train that opens new horizons; a train full of life.

    The train in this image is not the train of death from the story of the day…or is it? Perhaps it is the train of death captured in the last moment of joy before the horror of the bombs began.

    And so we are left to ponder the eternal question–how can we as a species produce such beauty and such horror? What is within us that allows some of us to look on the joy and hope of a train full of life and contemplate its destruction? How can our species produce both the image of the day and the story of the day?

  4. Superb image, excellent processing. I like it a lot. The red is vibrant, glowing in fact. It appears as if the bars where flexible because of that glow. I also like the effect the straight diagonal counterbars produce. If so inclined the bended waves could be viewed as riding along those straight bars as well, so there’s actually two “rails” associations in that picture. We’re all at crossroads sometimes, some paths are straight, some are curvy, but like in your picture, often the curvy one is the one that leads into the blue, if you know what I mean…

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