Thursday, June 30, 2011









Barcelona 5 - La Pedrera

On the second full day in Barcelona we planned to visit four locations designed by Antonio Gaudi, but only managed to get to three of them. It was a beautiful, sunny and hot day and we were fortunate to get a seat on the open top of the Hop-on Hop-off tour bus which gave us a nice view of the city as we drove. I was able to make photos of the architecture when we stopped at traffic lights or were held up in traffic.

For the next couple of mornings I will share photos of La Pedrera, also known as Casa MilĂ , which was finished in 1912. If interested you can find lots of information about the building on the Internet.

As you can see from the first two photos, the outside has a unique design with many curved shapes. After paying admission, I found that the inside of the building is open to the elements. This was certainly a challenge to photograph, especially with a new camera. The scene was very contrasty with bright areas lit by the sun and dark areas in shade. I decided to focus near the top of the building in order to ensure a blue sky. There were lots of reflections from the widows to add fill light which added a little light to the shaded areas.

Visitors also go to the roof of the building for a view of the city as well as the unique ventilation towers which will be the subject of tomorrow's photos.

Photos of the Day are for sale as stock photographs
and photographic enlargements.
They can also be purchased as slide shows
and/or wallpapers/screensavers.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Barcelona 4 - Spanish Village











Barcelona 4

After the heavy rain stopped we decided to walk around the Spanish Village and check the various streets and buildings that represented Spain as it was in the early 1900s. There were many shops and while my wife explored some of the art, clothing and foods, I photographed the buildings and streets. This is the last in the Spanish Village series.

The three photos I am sharing this morning show views of three different streets. (You can see more by checking my Photo of the Day Blog.). Barcelona was founded as a Roman City and some of the original city walls are still visible in the Gothic Quarter. I liked the Roman arches seen in the architecture around the city and represented in the first photo this morning and in a few of the previous photos. The second photo shows a narrow street made of cobblestone steps and colourful buildings. The third shows another street with a church at the end. Along with photos of other streets, I am sharing a couple more doors and windows this morning.

You have probably noticed that there aren't many people in the photos. I assume that was because of the rain. When we were getting ready to leave, the rain had stopped and more people began to show up. This was the least crowded place we visited during the 18 days we were in Europe. It was also the only day it rained.

Photos of the Day are for sale as stock photographs
and photographic enlargements.
They can also be purchased as slide shows
and/or wallpapers/screensavers.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Barcelona 3 - Spanish Village











Barcelona 3

Thanks for the positive comments regarding yesterday's photos. A few of you wondered if I was upset about the rain after flying to a different country. Of course I would rather it didn't rain that day, but since Everything's a Picture, I looked for different types of images - like those I sent yesterday. In fact, they were among my favourite of this village.

The first one today is a cropped view of the buildings across the square. (I've uploaded the original to my Blog this morning). I liked the windows, baclonies and patterns so I decided to take out the arches below.

For a guy like me who likes making photographs of doors and windows, this little village was a dream come true. The large door with balcony, columns, open window/door above and greenery was very interesting. In the Spanish Village, artisans created their art in the shops. The lady in the window was making beautiful Spanish dresses, but I liked the window with bars and a few plants. She is looking down which added mystery to the photo. I didn't know what she was doing until after I made the image. There were iron bars on many windows but I am not sure if this is a recent addition or that was the way they were built in the past.

Many buildings had interesting designs and artwork which I photographed as much as I could. I asked permission to photograph bottles of olive oil and the lady agreed to a few. Most places had "No Foto" signs in their entrances. I photographed archways in this village and everywhere else that I travelled in Europe.

Photos of the Day are for sale as stock photographs
and photographic enlargements.
They can also be purchased as slide shows
and/or wallpapers/screensavers.


Monday, June 27, 2011

Barcelona 2 - Spanish Village






Barcelona 2

Yesterday we rested much of the day to catch up on sleep but I was able to review most photos taken in Barcelona and Villefranche. I debated how to share photos taken on my European Vacation. Yesterday I shared 3 photos on my email lists but uploaded 10 images to my Blog. I think I will continue that approach - upload more images to my Blog every day. So, if you like the theme, you will see more by clicking the link to my Blog in the last paragraph.

Since this was my first trip to Europe I approached it as a photographic assignment - To capture images of each destinations that reflect my feelings about them. The first challenge in Barcelona was using a camera that I was not familiar with and the second was the heavy rain on the first full day of shooting.

We purchased tickets on the Hop On-Hop Off Tour Bus and headed out towards some of the tourist sights we had selected. However when the recorded tour guide mentioned the Spanish Village, we decided to check it out and we were glad we did! It was built for the 1929 World Fair and is representative of the style of buildings in the various regions of Spain at that time. The plan was to destroy it after the fair, but it was so popular that it was decided to make it a permanent open-air museum.

It rained very hard so we stayed under the arched entrance to the town square and hoped it would soon stop. I decided to make a few images of people who were also waiting for the rain to stop. Not being used to the zoom on the camera, I fiddled with it a bit, composed the first shot, then made the image. People were moving around so by the time I was ready, the scene had changed. Slow zooming was the first disadvantage with the new camera! However, since "Everything's A Picture" I decided to shoot anyway, otherwise I wouldn't take any photos at all.

I saw a man with an apron walking across the square and waited for him to walk into the scene. I thought it would be an interesting image because other than the fact he was talking on the phone, the scene would have been timeless.

As well, the viewfinder in the camera isn't as good as my DSLR so I also found it difficult to see what I was actually getting. I had set the camera to P rather than fully automatic and had to trust that the images would be OK. I saw a group of young people run out in the pouring rain so I composed and focus as soon as I could as they posed for one of their friends. I cropped out most of the light background and the expressions on the faces of the kids show the fun they were having. I've uploaded a second image of the scene and you can see the different expressions after standing in the heavy rain for a few seconds.

I saw a person with an umbrella walk out into the square so I composed the photo as soon as I could then waited for her to reach the centre of the square before shooting the picture.

Photos of the Day are for sale as stock photographs
and photographic enlargements.
They can also be purchased as slide shows
and/or wallpapers/screensavers.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Barcelona 1












Barcelona 1

I guess some of you have been wondering what happened to me because I haven't been sending my Photo of the Day for the past 19 days. My wife and I were in Europe where we took a 12 night Mediterranean Cruise on Royal Caribbean's Brilliance of the Seas. This was our first trip to Europe and we visited Spain, France, several locations in Italy, and Croatia. I just finished downloading nearly 5000 photos from Barcelona (Spain), Villefranche, Monte Carlo (France), Pisa, Rome, Pompeii, Venice, Ravenna (Italy) and Dubrovnik (Croatia) and now have to edit them and choose some to share with you.

Because all I read and heard about pickpockets and thieves in Barcelona I decided to purchase a new digital camera to use there. I chose a Nikon Coolpix P500 because of the 36x optical zoom. I didn't want to travel to Europe with a camera I hadn't used before so I took along the rest of my equipment as well. In Barcelona I relied on the new camera, but in other places I carried both so I have quite a range of photos. I'll talk about the advantages and disadvantages of each as I share images with you.

This morning I chose a few photos of the Maritime Museum of Barcelona which was just a few minutes walk from our hotel. We were up 35 hours without sleep when we arrived in Barcelona and even though we were pretty tired, we decided to take a short walk to get our bearings before having a nap in mid-afternoon. I didn't take many photos that first day.

This museum is located inside the walls of the former royal seaport built between 1283 and 1328 - the oldest buildings I had ever seen up to that point. I didn't get a chance to go inside, but made a few photos around the outside. The first shows the walls of the structure with modern day sidewalks built next to them. You can get an idea of the height of the walls by comparing with the height of the people.

Photos of the Day are for sale as stock photographs
and photographic enlargements.
They can also be purchased as slide shows
and/or wallpapers/screensavers.

Wednesday, June 08, 2011

Florida Shells




Florida Shells

Thanks for the positive comments about the photos I shared yesterday of Massachusetts. I promise I will share more when they are scanned.

This morning I chose photos of a shell sculpture I photographed in Lover's Key, Florida in 1993. I think that whoever did this is an artist at heart. I shared one of the photos of shells in my Holes series in May and thought you might enjoy seeing more of the interesting structure. Because I took the time to make photos of the shells nearly 20 years ago, you can see them even though they were probably gone shortly after I left. I suspect that wind, waves and people probably made short work of them.

Photos of the Day are for sale as stock photographs
and photographic enlargements.
They can also be purchased as slide shows
and/or wallpapers/screensavers.