Bikes and traffic signs

I noticed that when I’m strolling along streets with a camera in my hand, I’m often attracted by traffic signs and bikes left on the streets. I often feel tempted into capturing them but actually just a few of them make it into my photo archives.

In the photo above, the traffic sign is not the most important part of the photo but it complements the scene beautifully. I loved the complementary colours and simplicity of the view. I often feel foolish when taking a photo like this because I expect that nobody would find it interesting but I’m getting better at managing my feelings because this is what I find awesome about photography, the applying of the unique eye we all have. Even if nobody liked the photo, I do, and that makes it valuable.

Here the sign is much more prominent and although the scene is quite simple again, it tells more stories, not just the one about colours and shapes. Obviously the sign wasn’t needed at the moment and somebody propped it against the wall. Will it be needed again? Who put it there? Where will it end? I also like the contrast between the left and right part of the image. The photo was taken in a visitors’ area of a brewery which accounts for the barrel sticking out of the wall…

Bikes and traffic signs can often be found together…

The red bike on the left belongs to a “bike sharing” system operating in Pilsen since 2014. You have to register and pay a fee for using the system but the good thing is that the system is supported by city grants to keep the fees affordable. When you use the bike, you can leave it anywhere in the city which means that the bikes change their location. If you need one, you find the nearest available bike by means of SMS or a mobile application. There are 80 bikes available throughout the city, you can borrow them from March to November. All of the bikes I saw were of the same type and colour which surely makes them easier to distinguish.

Based on its style and colour, the last bike looks like a decoration to me. Also, you wouldn’t leave your bike outside in winter if you wanted to ride it. It looked great against the white fence and snow, perhaps that certain improbability of the sight made it even more captivating.

Well, you never know where your photos may take you. The series you might create when focusing on a particular object may become a beginning of a wonderful photography adventure. I’m definitely looking forward to finding more!



  1. This was a fun and interesting post, Petra. I especially loved the bicycle images. What an interesting concept the “bike sharing” program is. It could certainly be helpful in certain circumstances. That blue bicycle looks well cared for and seems to have all its parts. It may have just been parked there temporarily. Or, you may be right that it’s just being used as a decoration. Either way, it makes an interesting image.

    1. Linda, thank you, I’m pleased to hear you liked the post. I didn’t believe first that the bike sharing project would be much successful but I found an article online with some statistics where I was surprised to see that the system is used and that some people even use it quite regularly…

  2. That first photo reminds me of Mondrian’s paintings. Bikes are a fun theme. I often take some of my best iPhone photos while out on a ride. Sadly, it’s too cold and icy to bike now. 0F this morning and well below freezing all day. Bike sharing has become more popular in the USA too.

  3. I can see what you like in each of the photos. Yes, it would be interesting to know the story of what is happening, and why. What is the meaning of the red sign propped against the wall? We don’t have anything like that here.

    Love the bikes, especially the blue one. I’ll bet that it has a basket of flowers added during the summer.

    1. Sandy, you might be right about the basket of flowers… 🙂

      The red sign belongs to warning traffic signs and is called “road irregularity”. Typically it is used during road repairs or when a road is in bad condition in some place and needs to be repaired. Thus drivers are warned to be careful, slow down and watch the road.

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