Symmetry: The Whole World is Same Same But Different

For some reason I’m fascinated by finding symmetry in everything. Sometimes it’s the way lines meet and equality is achieved. Others it’s symmetry in opposites and concepts. But what is the photographic representation of that word, I asked myself while preparing this: my entry for Unframed World’s Travel Photo Roulette.

The underneath of a giant baseball cap at Anaheim's Angles Stadium in California
The underneath of a giant baseball cap at Anaheim's Angles Stadium in California
A house in a rice field in the mountains of Sapa, Vietnam
A house in a rice field in the mountains of Sapa, Vietnam
To me, symmetry is anything that comes together and finds it’s pair. That can be shapes, objects, nature, landscapes and even the very events that make up our lives.
Symmetrical triangles of traditional Bavarian houses in Augsburg, Germany
Symmetrical triangles of traditional Bavarian houses in Augsburg, Germany
Dragon scales on the stairs up to the Chang Mai monastery in Thailand
Dragon scales on the stairs up to the Chang Mai monastery in Thailand
Throughout my travels, I am always fascinated by the symmetry of how at it’s core, everything is the same across the world. Sure, getting across a body of water may look different on Route 66 than it does in rural Mexico, but people still have to get to the other side.
The Devil's Elbow Bridge on Route 66 in Missouri
The Devil's Elbow Bridge on Route 66 in Missouri
The rickety wooden rope bridge in Agua Clara, Mexico
The rickety wooden rope bridge in Agua Clara, Mexico
My photograph of an aerial cable car soaring over the East River in New York City also symmetrically fits into the same category of ways to get across water. Again, a completely different take on the same concept.
The Roosevelt Island Tram soars above the East River and New York City
The Roosevelt Island Tram soars above the East River and New York City
To reuse the above tram photo and change the symmetry, it also can be shown alongside this antiquated train weaving through the hills of Sri Lanka like a Galapagos cruise ship. All are ways for people to get from point A to point B.
A train weaves through the tea country of Sri Lanka
A train weaves through the tea country of Sri Lanka
I also consider certain opposites symmetrical: hot and cold, night and day, war and peace.
The streets of Bangkok burn as a Red Shirt protestor waves a flag in victory
The streets of Bangkok burn as a Red Shirt protestor waves a flag in victory
The Red Shirt protest in Bangkok is the war to the peace of the Chiang Mai Buddha statue. The two play off each other and, coincidentally, they both were taken in Thailand.
The Buddha statue in the group meditation room at Wat Umong, the Forest Monestary
The Buddha statue in the group meditation room at Wat Umong, the Forest Monestary
Your question for commenting: what do YOU think symmetry means?

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  • http://www.unframedworld.com/ Andrew – The Unframed World

    Great entry! Love the HDR you’ve got going on. My fav on the page is the train.

    • Greg Goodman

      Thanks so much Andrew. My work is actually not HDR. All my photography is from a single image that is extensively edited in my digital darkroom with masks and layers. It has that HDR feel, but without HDR or tonemapping.