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July Challenge: Fire, Water, Earth and Air

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Hard work this challenge setting, picking a theme that hadn't already been covered but not so prescriptive as to cut down on possible entries.  In the end I've decided on Fire, Water, Earth and Air, the four elements of antiquity.


What I'm looking for are images that ccombine two or more of those elements together.  The interpretation doesn't have to be literal.  Fire could be actual fire - or merely a fiery colour.  Water can be any liquid.  Earth represents any solid, and Air can include skies, vapour, mists and rainbows.  The important thing is to submit images that have at least two of the elements as dominat parts of the composition.


I don't have that many examples in my own portfolio but I'll try and illustrate what I mean with a few images.  For example, it could be a straight landscape which combines water, sky and solid earth such as this shot of the cliffs at Seaton in Devon.




It could be the fiery colours of Autumn reflected in water:


Swamp cypress, Taxodium distichum, and reflection in red autumn foliage by the side of a small lake Stock Photo


It could involve people, as with this shot of a local craftsman smelting silver (earth) using a bellows (air) and fire (his furnace).


Artist using a hand pumped bellows to smelt metal in a simple kiln for moulding at Flameworks, Plymouth, UK Stock Photo


It could also be a symbolic representation of the elements such as these Newlyn copper plaques on the wall of the Passmore Edwards gallery in Penzance, Cornwall which represent, from left to right,  Earth, air, water and fire.


Verdigrised plaques, Newlyn Copper, on the facade of the Passmore Edwards (Newlyn Art) gallery, Penzance, Cornwall, Stock Photo


Your submissions will, I'm sure, be far better.


Usual rules apply.  Up to three submissions per contributor, all images have to be for sale on Alamy.  I'll let the challenge run till Friday 31 July when I'll pick the finalists.


Have fun.

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Congratulations on your win, John. This is a challenging topic indeed. Here are my three offerings.


The Olympic Cauldron at the 2010 Winter Games in Vancouver, Canada




Smoky haze caused by forest fires, Vancouver, Canada




Steaming crater of Poas Volcano, Costa Rica



Edited by John Mitchell
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Congrats John.  Nice topic.  My three


1) Sunset storm clouds reflected in water on pavement




2) I think I got all the elements in this one.  Cat jumping in the air thru a firey hoop by the water's edge.  Key West, FL




3) A schooner sails into a fire-like sunset, Key West, Florida



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Three from me


Autumn trees reflected in a lake in Quebec Stock Photo

Fire and Water - autumn trees in Quebec




A lone person watcing sunset on the Aiguille Verte reflected in Lac Blanc, Chamonix, France Stock Photo

Earth and water - the superb Aiguille Verte reflected in Lac Blanc, Chamonix Alps



Gorgeous altocumulus clouds reflected in a nearly flat sea in Baie des Chaleurs, Gaspesie, Quebec Stock Photo

Air and Water - high altitude cloud reflected in very calm water

Edited by Colin Woods
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DRN703 -  Desert View Watch Tower overlooking the Grand Canyon and Colorado River.
EFDRKX -  Eternal Flame Peace Memorial on the Gettysburg Battlefield.
C48F7J -  Antony Gormley's Exposure looking at the sunset over the IJsselmeer Lake, Lelystad, The Netherlands.
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Land of Volcanos and Lakes.  




Volcan Momotombo, Lago Xolotlán (Lake Managua), at Puerto Momotombo near Leon Viejo.  Volcano was still out gassing.   Fishing boats and egrets (snowy and great) along the lake shore. 




Cooking on a wood burning clay stove in the Nicaraguan campo.




Eternal flame for Tomas Borge, one of the Three Heros of the Sandinistas, with wreath from his widow and their three children.   Managua. 



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Some great photos to date, very tough competition!


1) Fire earth and water - Underground fire damaging footpath adjacent to the river Tyne




2) Fire earth and water - Firefighters tackle blaze in Newcastle




3) Fire, earth and frozen/condensing water, The Tanfield railway




Edited by Bryan
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With such a small portfolio, I feel like a weak contender ("I coulda been a contender!" - Marlon Brando), but I'll throw in a couple just for fun. Y'all photos look great.


contrails, water and air


Airplane condensation trails, or contrails, in sky through tree branches. Homogenitus or cirrus aviaticus: clouds created by human activity. Stock Photo






fire and air (and earth below)

Airplane wing light in motion from the airplane window at night. Stock Photo







water and air


Kite surfer or kiteboarder with white sail on a windy day in front of the Golden Gate Bridge and the Marin Headlands, San Francisco Bay. Stock Photo


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Excellent collection so far.  It's already looking like it'll be a hard job to whittle down the subnissions to a few favourites.  So, keep them coming and add to my agonising.*



*Memo to self:  Don't win another challenge = the consequences are tough 😀

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1) Fire and earth - burning linseed bale





2) Fire, air and water  - Fiery sunset at Hatchet pond in the New Forest





3) Earth, water and air - Limestone scenery with rock pools in Cyprus




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Congratulations on the win, John.

My three:


1. Fire and water - Sailboat at sunset, Saint Malo, France




2. Earth and water - Grand Falls, Arizona, USA



3. Fire and water - Fire station on canal, Paris, France




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Sunrise over Yarmouth Isle of Wight


Tree on horizon of ploughed field the Cotswolds


Freshly ploughed field of red earth Staffordshire

Edited by Allan Bell
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Air, earth, water, and perhaps the firey lights on the tree? St. Croix, U.S.V.A. I got up hours before dawn for this.



Will Rogers park in Oklahoma. Representing water and earth.

This one, what the heck. Unimpressive to most. Not me. Water, earth. 
All of these pictures represent who I am. The thrill I felt each time I pressed the shutter, to be there, in that special time, at that special place.




Edited by Betty LaRue
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12 hours ago, Bryan said:

Some great photos to date, very tough competition!


3) Fire, earth and frozen/condensing water, The Tanfield railway




That's a beautiful picture, I always admire it when I see it.

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What a topic!

Here come my three:


I will start with water, and a little ant having a drink:



And then some Fire In The Sky (Anyone remember the song?)

This one was in Tokyo Japan:



And for air, I choose air travel:


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John, many congrats on your win! Now I know this is simply a typo on your part, (the caption on your photo is correct), however your picture of Seaton is in fact here in Sidmouth. 😀
Next time you're down this way, pop in for a socially distanced cup of coffee in the garden!



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