This shot was taken a few days ago while crossing the ferry on the Butterworth side of Penang, and attempting crossing over to the island of Penang.
This was the same day when there was such a ruckus on the Penang Bridge. Apparently, a 10-wheeled trucked broke down near mid-bridge, and then, there was a bomb scare also – this all happened on 4 April 2007.
The Penang bridge is one long bridge: 13.5KM (8.4 Miles) long, and it is the only drivable way to reach the island from the mainland. With all the fuss on the 4th, thousands of motorists were stuck in jams going to or from the island.
At one point, it was reported that the jam getting onto the bridge stretched back some 15KM on the highway. I wouldn’t doubt it. I was stuck in the jam getting onto the ferry to cross over to the island.
We crawled along at a snails pace: Only after 3 and a half hours were we able to fight our way the 500-meters it took to get from where we were originally stuck, to where drivers pay the toll to WAIT IN LINE (some more), to board the ferry.
Damn-the-Frustration of Penang Traffic!
There are works going on now to widen the bridge, but that may be too little too late. A second and perhaps third bridge is needed to give Penang traffic some relief, but these things don’t happen quickly. Maybe a Light Rail Transit System would be good too, and that is something that is also being discussed by the relevant departments.
Anyway, I was glad that I had my camera with me on that day. I was able to get some shots of ships as we crossed over on the ferry. This image is a digital-Platinum-stylized photo of some activity at the Penang Port.
The ship at mid-right is the Ocean Osprey:
Ship Type: Oil Products Tanker.
Deadweight Tonnage: 7,624.
DOB: 1996 06
I decided to make this image look a little antique: Thus, I incorporated this image into a Platinum-style layout and look. However, if looking closer at the ship, you know it is not antique, but modern with “SAFETY FIRST” and “NO SMOKING” signs painted in huge print. Also, the modern communication towers and equipment on the ship shows us a modern ship. If that isn’t enough to put a general date to the scene, add to that the modern lifting machines loading containers onto the ship on the left hand side of the photograph.
Well, maybe using digital software to come up with Platinum images is not very “pure” – but at least for photographers who never had the opportunity to work with this printing process, we can see our work similarly, or differently, using digital processes. It’s kind of fun to experiment with many kinds of looks for photographs, and this is just another technology that allows us modern day photographers to do such experimentation – digitally.
Here’s a little history on the Platinum Process by the very interesting and enlightening expert of photography at about.com, Peter Marshall:
“Platinum prints are one of the family of processes based on the light sensitivity of iron(III) (ferric) salts. In the presence of organic material such as oxalate ions, these are reduced using energy from light to give iron(II) compounds. These then react with platinum salts to produce platinum metal. The iron salts are then removed leaving a stable platinum image. Like the other iron processes, platinum printing is slow and requires a UV light source (you can use the sun, but UV flourescent tubes or mercury vapour lamps etc are more repeatable) and large negatives as all exposure is contact printing.
Platinum printing was patented by W. Willis in 1873 (with later improvements) and materials were available commercially for many years. Increases in the price of platinum around 1910-20 led to a rapid reduction in their availability and use, although production did not finally cease in the UK until 1941. A few photographers continued to print in platinum, making their own papers, but most used other materials. A revival of interest, using hand coated papers began in the 1970s, and at least one platinum paper was commercially produced from 1998 until around 2000.” [SOURCE: http://photography.about.com/library/glossary/bldef_platinum.htm ]