Capture the Flag

This is a discussion on Capture the Flag within the Weekly Themes forums, part of the PHOTO PROJECTS category; The theme this week is "Capture the Flag", no we are not expecting you to go out paint balling and causing all sorts of mayhem ...


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Thread: Capture the Flag

  1. #1
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    Capture the Flag

    The theme this week is "Capture the Flag", no we are not expecting you to go out paint balling and causing all sorts of mayhem but we would like to see flags, whether Old Glory or the bunting at the kids party a flag is a flag. The more unusual the better, if it signifies something special then tell us, if its a country flag tell us which one and lets see how many of the worlds national flags we can get. Remember if there is something about the flag that is unique or special then tell us we love facts as they can add so much to an image.

    Flag Fact: Which of the worlds flags have eagles on them
    Answer: Albania, Montenegro, Serbia, Zambia, and Mexico

    .... and before you say anything this was not inspired by the Big Bang Theory episode "The Beta Test Initiation" where Sheldon and Amy put out a podcast on flags, though I do love that show and must be my favourite sitcom out there, I don't know what the writers are on but I wish I could get me some

    Also we get many requests for themes which fit more into challenges which is covered by another forum, this forum isn't a challenge in the sense of providing something to stretch your photographic skills but more a fun idea in which you can stretch your skills as much or little as you like: for example for this theme you see a line of flag poles which would work then why not experiment with your DOF skills, or not up to you guys. Just have fun.
    Last edited by yorkshireman; 02-18-2012 at 02:28 AM.


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    OK I'll get us started, this was taken from the window of a fish restaurant in Oban, Scotland looking over to the Isle of Mull and of course is the Scottish flag.


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    Wilson Hall at Fermilab



    Wilson Hall at Fermilab by ChicagoJohn, on Flickr

    I took this picture last May, four months before Fermilab's Tevatron accelerator was shut down due to lack of funding, superseded by the Large Hadron Collider, CERN laboratory, Geneva. It had been the second largest proton accelerator and was used by a network of subatomic particle physics laboratories around the world via the internets; This is represented in the flags of participating nations in front of Wilson Hall, a landmark building there.

    Dr. Wilson, who designed the building based upon a Gothic French cathedral, had a hyperbolic obelisk made of stainless steel placed on a pedestal in the reflecting pond. I composed this shot trying to make the obelisk appear part of the geometry of the building; an "obeliskal illusion", you might say It is only 32 feet high in comparison with the 16 story Wilson Hall structure: Appearances can be deceiving :P.

    Wilson called the sculpture Acqua Alle Funi in reference to a difficult attempt to erect an Egyptian obelisk in St Petersburg in the 1600's. Onlookers were ordered to remain silent upon penalty of death. After 1000 men with thick ropes struggled for hours, the obelisk began to sag severely, and a Genoan sailor yelled out the words, "Acqua alle funi!" - "water to the ropes" -- which caused them to tighten their grip on the statue and stop stretching -- a trick apparently used in sailing. In their gratitude to him, his life was spared and he was made a nobleman.
    Last edited by ChicagoJohn; 02-18-2012 at 05:10 PM.
    I only went out for a walk and finally decided to stay out till sundown; for going out, I found, was really going in.” - John Muir

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    Seeing as how this thread is just for fun, I thought I'd share a somewhat deep connection this topic of flags has for me; from a play by Wallace Shawn and Andre Greggory called "My Dinner with Andre". If you haven't seen it, I'd recommend it to you highly.

    Here is an excerpt that has to do with a flag....

    WALLY: By the way, did you ever see that play, The Violets Are Blue?

    ANDRE: [Without expression:] No.

    WALLY: Oh, well, when you mentioned the violets, it reminded me of that. It was about people being strangled on a submarine. [Andr้ gives Wally a bemused/puzzled look; he says nothing. Pause. Wally sighs.] Well! So that was Christmas! What happened after that?

    ANDRE: You really want to hear about all this?

    WALLY: Yeah!

    ANDRE: Well. Around that time, I was beginning to think about going to India. And Kozan suddenly left one day. And you know, I was beginning to get into a lot of very strange ideas around that time. Now, for example, I had developed this...well, I got this idea which I...well, it was very appealing to me at the time, you know, which was that I would have a flag, a large flag, and that wherever I worked this flag would fly, or if we were outside, say, with a group, that the flag could be the thing that we'd lay on at night, and that somehow between working on this flag and lying on this flag, this flag flying over us, that the flag would pick up vibrations of a kind that would still be in the flag when I brought it home? So, I went down to meet this flag maker that I'd heard about, and you know, there was this very straight-forward looking guy, you know, a very sweet and really healthy-looking and everything, nice, big, blond; you know, he had a beautiful clean loft down in the village with lovely, happy flags. And I was all into The Little Prince and I talked to him about the Little Prince and his adventures and everything, how I needed the flag and what the flag should be, and he seemed to really connect with it. So, two weeks later I came back: he showed me a flag that I thought was very odd, you know, 'cause I'd...well, you know, I'd expected something gentle, and lyrical. There was something about this that was so powerful, it was almost overwhelming! And it did include the Tibetan swastika.

    WALLY: [Swallows abruptly.] He put a swastika in your flag?!

    ANDRE: It was the Tibetan swastika, not the Nazi swastika. It's one of the most ancient Tibetan symbols. And it was just strange, you know. But, I brought it home, because my idea with this flag was that before I left, you know, before I left for India, I wanted several people who were close to me to have this flag in the room for the night, to sleep with it, you know, and then in the morning to sew something into the flag. So I took the flag in to Marina, and I said: "Hey, look at this. What do you think of this?" And she said: "What is that? That's awful!" And I said: "It's a flag!" And she said: "I don't like it!," you know. And I said: "Oh, well, I kinda thought you might like to spend the night with it," you know. But she really thought the flag was awful. So, then, Chiquita threw this party for me, before I left for India, and the apartment was filled with guests, and at one point Chiquita said: "The flag! The flag! Where's the flag?" And I said: "Oh, yeah, the flag!" And I go and get the flag and I open it up. Chiquita goes absolutely white and runs out of the room and vomits! So the party just comes to a halt and breaks up! And then the next day, I gave it to this young woman who had been in my group in Poland, who was now in New York. I didn't tell her anything about any of this. At five o'clock in the morning she called me up and she said: "I gotta come and see you right away!" And I thought: "Oh, God!" She came up and she said: "I saw things! I saw things around this flag! Now I know you're stubborn and I know you want to take this thing with you, but if you'd follow my advice you'd put it in a hole in the ground and burn it and cover it with earth 'cause the Devil's in it!" Well, I never took the flag with me! In fact, I gave it to her, and she had a ceremony with it six months later in France, with some friends, in which they did burn it.

    So; We'll see what happens with this flag theme...
    I only went out for a walk and finally decided to stay out till sundown; for going out, I found, was really going in.” - John Muir

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    John that is some history on the Fermilab and the extract from "My Dinner with Andre" well you are well read and an amazing memory to remember this extract.

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    Quote Originally Posted by yorkshireman View Post
    John that is some history on the Fermilab and the extract from "My Dinner with Andre" well you are well read and an amazing memory to remember this extract.
    Thank you, George; Thank you very much. If you haven't seen My Dinner with Andre, I would highly recommend it. Wallace, who wrote it pretty much, is still around, I think, about four years older than me.

    Anyway, I have a flag photo planned for this evening here in Chicagoland. Look for a result, if successful, in about 8 hours

    Another great fun idea, yorkshireman (aka George). I don't know how you do it, man, but you keep coming up with them !!!
    I only went out for a walk and finally decided to stay out till sundown; for going out, I found, was really going in.” - John Muir

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    Ford Motor Corporation World Headquarters

    This is actually only about half of the flags.



    Incidentally... no tilt shift here, so I was playing with Photoshop's "free-transform" tool to correct the building perspective. I didn't *quite* get it right... but maybe it's close.
    ChicagoJohn likes this.
    Tim Campbell

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    6898840209_f071d5bfac_b by ChicagoJohn, on Flickr

    Love ths, TC... the curvilenear flow of the flags freely flying in the wind versus the rigid rectilinear boxes of the corporate power brokers...

    America, America, God shed His Grace on thee
    And crowned thy good with Brotherhood
    From sea to shining sea...

    The Greatest Nation on the Face of the Earth... AMERICA!!!

    RAISE HER FLAG HIGHEST !!!

    AS IN YOUrR PICTURE, DANE
    THAT'S WHAT I'M SAIN'

    not sure who's blue flag was second, maybe Argentena, soy de Argentina!
    Great Britain a close third... no... what.... that's Australia....

    Oh crap... it's alphabetical order, not order of greatness as a country... damn....

    Ya.... Red White Red... Austria... Damn... it IS alphabetical order!!! Ya... Belgium Black Yellow and Red, vertical...then Brazil Green with a yellow diamond and a tourquise someting in the canter....

    It's alphabetical....Well if that doesn't suck.... :-|

    When I saw the US Flag first, of course I assumed it would be in order of greatness, not alphabetical order..... bummer....
    Last edited by ChicagoJohn; 02-18-2012 at 08:39 PM.
    I only went out for a walk and finally decided to stay out till sundown; for going out, I found, was really going in.” - John Muir

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    I only went out for a walk and finally decided to stay out till sundown; for going out, I found, was really going in.” - John Muir

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    Tim great addition and as I said in the write up this is fun and you added your own challenge with PS


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