The Bridge PhotosOn November 13th 2003, the internet-famous "bridge photos" were taken. The images appear at first to show Mothman clinging to a bridge in one image and then flying away in the next. This photo is sometimes mistaken as related to the "The Silver Bridge Collapse" in Point Pleasant but its actually not that bridge or even the memorial bridge built afterwards. It's The Ironton-Russel Bridge crossing the Ohio river between Ironton, Ohio and Russell, Kentucky.
What the image actually shows, as pointed out in a video by TREY The Explainer, is a metal structure on the top of the bridge tilting and falling off. The corresponding structures had already fallen off and the other was slanting sideways in the first image and then falling in the second. The exact same structure can be seen on the other side at the top arches of the bridge in the photo.What appears to be the Mothman in these photo is actually a piece of rusted metal breaking off plummeting into the water below. The Ironton-Russel Bridge was infamously known to start to decay and collapse as it was poorly maintained. In 2003 it was demolished because it was no longer safe to cross because parts started to break off and crumble.
These photos have become widely circulated online and are often associated with the Mothman legend. They are used because of how known and eye-catching they are despite it being less than genuine. Much like the hoaxed "Loch Ness Monster" image, it is sometime used just as a representation to evoke certain imagery. Though they might look somewhat convincing at first glance, it's not what it seems.
Sources: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ironton-Russell_Bridge https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y2W7WLQTIUM
Widely Used PhotoshopThis photo was uploaded to Deviantart on October 24th 2008 by a user named "Seiginotora" with the description reading "On one of my errands tonight man, was I glad I brought my new camera with me... I saw THIS in the sky. I don't know what else to think but whoa!"
The image shows a street with cars at a traffic light during sunrise or sunset. There's a KFC and other commercial buildings then the black outline of the Mothman flying above the telephone wires. It is clearly fake and well known as a "Photoshop" even though its just the creature drawn onto a background. It has been featured on many Wikis and websites causing it to shows up in frequently in search results and be used by people in videos and posts. Although its more recent, Its a common "go to image" for people talking about the Mothman.
The photo is not real but is also not a hoax because the person who made it doesn't really claim for it to be real and it should be obvious to anyone who sees it that its meant as an artwork and not an actual sighting. In the comment section of the post on Deviantart, the creator of the picture plainly admits that it is fake by saying "[I] took the photo myself, rendered the Mothman into it."