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A Walk with Polly Borland, the A-Bomb, and Vampires!

February 19th, 2013 No Comments
The "Baker" explosion, part of Opera...

The “Baker” explosion, part of Operation Crossroads, a nuclear weapon test by the United States military at Bikini Atoll, Micronesia, on july 25th 1946. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Our once-a-week walk on the quirky and unusual Byways of Photography takes us today to the South Pacific, Vampire Country, and the Land of Oz.

The South Pacific

We often hear the term ‘Mushroom Cloud’; it is improperly applied to most any detonation.  In Photos from the World’s First Underwater Nuclear Explosion, PetaPixel has published a staggering image of a true blue Mushroom Cloud.  Make that several staggering images.

America’s Bikini Atoll tests of nuclear weapons are quite (in)famous and these photos are of an underwater nuclear explosion from those tests.  PetaPixel writes “Due to the unique properties of underwater explosions, the Baker test produced a number of unique photographs that the world had never seen before.”

They forgot to write, “or since!” 

Look at the enlargement to see a ship being blasted into the air, scroll down and take a gander at the initial fireball, and check out the image of seamen looking at the explosion from a distance in what looks like a still from a war movie.

Vampire Country

“In the Serbian mountains near the Bosnian border lays the village of Zarozje” that is classic Vampire Country.  Martin Von Krogh has proven it in his photo story on Agence VU.  It is chock-a-block with grey and gloomy, highly atmospheric photos of a time-frozen land.  The low-contrast B&W photos enhance the effects.

The imagery Von Krogh presents is just perfect for one of those Christopher Lee ‘Dracula’ movies from Hammer Films.

Click on the link and admire photos of mysterious woods, superstitious villagers, forbidding graveyards, and (haunted?) old churchyards.  Brrr!  Wait, hang on—before you click the link, grab a bulb of garlic and a hawthorn stake . . . you just never know . . .

The Land of Oz

Let’s close close to home with a photographer that may have flown under the radar.

Several hours back, The West Australian published a story about the documentary that ABC aired about Borland and her “arresting, unsettling, unforgettable” images.

Borland’s website is confirmation that her images are indeed “arresting, unsettling, unforgettable.”  Here’s arresting, here’s unsettling and you can pick your own ‘unforgettable’.  That said, Borland’s photos are also hip and cool.

The West Australian writes in its story, “the work of Australian photographer Polly Borland is relatively unknown in her home country”.  Not anymore!


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