11-22mm Lens, Photo Challenges, Photo Editing, Photography

Weekly Photo Challenge: Scale

Sometimes with a good base in reality you can scale something up in your imagination:

ISO 800 10mm f/18 1/100

This is Rosslyn Chapel in Scotland. Look somewhat familiar? If you have read The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown or seen the movie that could be why, this chapel gets a feature in both.

The chapel is beautiful, full of intricate carvings.  It has been restored and is open to the public thanks in part to the publicity from the book and movie.  I’m grateful for that, the chapel is a work of art. I’ll be honest though, I thought the book was terrible and because of that, didn’t even bother with the movie. The book plot involves a vast conspiracy. I’m a simplest explanation tends to be closest to the truth kind of person. Writing a work of fiction can be similar to photography. It can be an exercise in taking something real and expanding it in your imagination. That was the process I used to get the above photo from this original:

ISO 800 10mm f/18 1/100

Pretty obvious that I have taken some liberties with the facts so to speak. I’ve added filters to accentuate textures in the stone and the sky. Added a blue tone for a stark, cold feel. Then I obscured the edges to swallow up details like the bench and the tourist.  Like the chapel in the book, I’ve taken a bit of what was there and then added some imagination.

Do you like my imagined version? Did you like The Da Vinci Code? feel free to leave a comment below. If you are thinking of visiting the chapel, know that they have a restrictive photo policy.  It is also a fairly small space that is often crowded. With those things in mind, I would still recommend a visit, it is beautiful.



47 thoughts on “Weekly Photo Challenge: Scale

  1. It’s interesting what one sees in an image. Especially when it’s a reworking of something you know. I knew it was Rosslyn Chapel – but it was if It was it had been moved to Aberdeenshire. In fact it was even more specific than that in my mind – Rosslyn Chapel was Slains – with some of the sandstone replaced and mixed in with granite. I found different memories inter-playing in my mind – exploring Slains, with it’s gothic count dracula imagery, then finding my way into Roslin Glen. A complete act of fiction – made up from bits of the truth! Thank you!

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  3. What a transformation. Very dramatic final shot, and can certainly feel the blue hues shining through. I read The Da Vinci code when it came out. Loved the mystery around the plot but at times I found it hard to follow along because the plot had quite a few twists and turns and it was a more complicated story than I thought.

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    • Thanks, it was interesting to me how the black and white version I created wasn’t nearly as dramatic. The sky didn’t have quite the pop as this version does. Since I don’t ever like a movie adaptation better than the book, I didn’t even bother with the movie.


  4. Love the image! The only time I managed to get to Rosslyn it was covered in scaffolding and inaccessible. It was post-da Vinci Code, but we hated the book so it was more that we happened to be back in the UK for a wedding. I quite like authors who play with the Templar stories, but Umberto Eco set the bar with Foucault’s Pendulum, and Dan Brown still tying his shoes.


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  7. I love your play on words and interplay with scale and obscure and connection to the book – which by the way did not like that or the movie ! Love your take on scale


  8. Gosh, Amy, your version looks awesome and forbidding. It partly reminds me of that image in the original Ghostbusters movie of the partly-destroyed apartment house with Zuhl (sp?) reigning on top. shivers!


  9. I love your very dramatic depiction of the chapel.

    I never read the book but I did see the film. I thought the film was okay as a modern day “treasure hunt” sort of film. I understand that the writing of the book was inspired by an actual elaborate hoax that was started by a hoaxer/con artist in Europe — possibly France. Like a good author of fiction he carefully wove a lot of archaeological and anthropological facts with just enough fiction to convince a lot of important people of a royal lineage from Christ that exists to this day. The author of the DaVinci Code is said to have modernized the tale told by the con man. I wish I knew his name. I might have to Google it after this.

    The movie was certainly a new twist on the Allan Quartermain and Indiana Jones concepts.

    What actually intrigues me is that Rosslyn Chapel actually factors in the true life Oak Island, NS, Canada mystery. A real life treasure hunt which truly suggest that the Knights Templars and others beat even the Vikings to North America with King Solomon’s wealth. Possibly even the Arc of the Covenent, which is a scary prospect if that’s what the Lagina brothers find buried under the island.

    There are a number of links between Rosslyn Chapel and Oak Island, and one significant indication is the corn stalks that are carved into the walls of the chapel. It is one of the clues that strongly suggest that the corn that was accepted by the Templars from Canada’s native Indians, was brought back to England and introduced there for the first time ever.

    Your picture evokes thought on these new potential findings.


    • The chapel was beautiful, intricate with carving and detail, I am quite certain that you would find it fascinating to look through. I was interested in seeing a few things. First was the combination of what might be called the “profane” with the “sacred”. There were many human and nature elements mixed in with things we more associate with biblical stories. I also wanted to see the corn, as I had heard of the theory that the Knights Templar might have been to North America prior to the Vikings. I find human migrations to be very interesting, so I wanted to see the corn. I have to say, if that is proof of the claim that they made it to North America, I am not convinced. The corn carving is certainly a plant, but that’s about as far as I’m willing to go with it. It did not look distinctly like corn to me. Also, it looked generic enough that the explanation that it looked like nothing else in the nearby environment, felt untrue to me, and a bit like someone was dreaming a bit when they were looking at it.


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