Under the Colosseum

It was a thing to see, the Colosseum. This view is from one end (the Emperor’s Box is to your left), the floor of the area would have sat atop these underground chambers and passages (hypogeum). This is where performers (Gladiator, animals and otherwise) were brought in. It was also built with a series of machines…pulleys and trap doors to aid in creating an unexpected environment for those in the arena.

Photo Technical Info

  • Aperture: ƒ/6.3
  • Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark II
  • Taken: 16 January, 2016
  • Focal length: 16mm
  • ISO: 400
  • Shutter speed: 1/400s
  • Title: Under the Colosseum

The Ceiling at Uffizi

Even the Art Museums are treasures of antiquity in Italy. If you happen upon the Uffizi Gallery, the building is honestly as much a treasure as the art (and these are some of the greatest examples of their era).

Photo Technical Info

  • Aperture: ƒ/4
  • Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark II
  • Taken: 15 January, 2016
  • Focal length: 16mm
  • ISO: 2500
  • Shutter speed: 1/60s
  • Title: The Ceiling at Uffizi

Anne Frank Huis

History

It is terrible and wonderful thing to be in the Annex, the place that sustained Anne Frank, her family…several families. The boards creek beneath you feet in a way that you feel, viscerally the fear of movement, of discovery. It is sobering to see through slivers of window to the outside and dream of the normal world before the Nazi’s occupied Amsterdam.

Most everything from the Annex has been removed…was removed right after the families arrest. Otto Frank, the only Frank survivor of the concentration camps wanted the rooms left open, but small accents still exist. Walls, and sinks and wood hold memories long after the people are gone.

I was fascinated by the sink in the kitchen. I stayed there, losing time, just feeling the world of it’s texture. I LONGED to climb the stair to the attic because I knew this was one of the places Anne was able in the early morning to see the world through the high window.

The whole place is suffused with this boredom, isolation and fear, but it it so terribly wonderful at the same time to feel a small bit of this. The atrocities of the past, must never be allowed back into our world. They must be remembered as must the people who’s beauty was taken all to soon from this world.

Photo Technical Info

  • Aperture: ƒ/5
  • Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark II
  • Taken: 19 February, 2017
  • Focal length: 35mm
  • ISO: 640
  • Shutter speed: 1/500s
  • Title: Anne Frank Huis

Everyday Florence

What Places Look Like…How it IS

This is an odd photo for me. Truth be told, I tend to show photos of the exceptional. The things people create, the MOST beautiful things in the world. I love these achievements because they are perhaps the most wonderful expressions of our shared humanity. I will also admit, these are often not my favorite things about the places I visit. To me, the variation if every day is invigorating. From the heart filling songs of birds I have yet to ignore. From the smell of spice I have never once tasted. From the flourish of a language I cannot comprehend. The feel of breathing in new pollen, yet rejected by my body. All of these are more are foreign to me, but yet SO familiar. This view of rooftops in Florence made me think of all of this. How familiar, this everyday scene, and yet how beautifully…new.

Photo Technical Info

  • Aperture: ƒ/8
  • Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark II
  • Taken: 15 January, 2016
  • Focal length: 16mm
  • ISO: 100
  • Shutter speed: 1/250s
  • Title: Everyday Florence

555 in Amsterdam

Bicycles and Row Houses

This scene caught my eye walking back “home” (hotel) while in Amsterdam from Anne Frank Huis. The yellow bicycle against the mostly monochrome row homes really stood out in my mind in this way. It was only later that I noticed how fun the most prominent home number is here. I also saw my first Banksy in the wild nearby. Amsterdam is a wonderful city for cycling and walking, you can’t get away from the general humanness of the place…which I just adore.

Photo Technical Info

  • Aperture: ƒ/2.8
  • Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark II
  • Taken: 19 February, 2017
  • Focal length: 20mm
  • ISO: 320
  • Shutter speed: 1/1000s
  • Title: 555 in Amsterdam

Red Room in Amsterdam

Draped in Satin

I visited Amsterdam earlier this year and found a new member on my short list of favorite cities. It’s an amazing city in many respects with a rich and interesting past. I was taken by this scene…I’ll let you guess WHERE the red room is located and WHAT its propose is, but it oddly made me thing of death; and a little person speaking backwards in riddles (thanks David Lynch). It turned out not the greatest of photos, but I like it all the same. How do you feel about the red room?

Photo Technical Info

  • Aperture: ƒ/2.8
  • Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark II
  • Taken: 20 February, 2017
  • Focal length: 18mm
  • ISO: 3200
  • Shutter speed: 1/200s
  • Title: Red Room in Amsterdam

Outside the Colosseum in Rome

Colossal

Rounding off the month of BIG PLACES, how about a place with “big” in the name…the Colosseum in Rome! I was standing outside after my visit. I was truth be told gawking at all the people in line and smiling ever thankfully that I got up early for my visit. The sun was behind part of the facade and I snapped this quick shot of the massive structure!

Photo Technical Info

  • Aperture: ƒ/8
  • Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark II
  • Taken: 17 January, 2016
  • Focal length: 26mm
  • ISO: 400
  • Shutter speed: 1/500s
  • Title: Outside the Colosseum in Rome

Fingers of Light Inside St Peter’s Basilica in Vatican City

FAR to Big

St. Peter’s Basilica in Vatican City is HUGE! Continuing my series of places too big to capture in a single frame…I just love the light in these churches, the broken rays shining down on visitors to the Basilica is a great experience! It also happened that I visited when I was able to enter through the holy door, a timing that I think makes my Catholic friends a bit green.

Photo Technical Info

  • Aperture: ƒ/5.6
  • Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark II
  • Taken: 18 January, 2016
  • Focal length: 16mm
  • ISO: 3200
  • Shutter speed: 1/125s
  • Title: Fingers of Light Inside St Peter's Basilica in Vatican City

Outside Santa Maria del Fiore

Places Too Big

I have a pretty wide-angle lens on the camera I generally travel with. 16mm on a full frame sensor can take in a huge landscape! Sometimes, however, because of the distance, or sheer number of tourists in a location I cant take everything in I would like. This month I am sharing photos of places too big to be contained in a single frame. Santa Maria del Fiore is a magnificent structure and one that American audiences know from the books of Dan Brown. Giotto’s bell tower is a great climb and near impossible to get in a single shot. Throw in the church…forget about it!

Photo Technical Info

  • Aperture: ƒ/8
  • Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark II
  • Taken: 15 January, 2016
  • Focal length: 21mm
  • ISO: 100
  • Shutter speed: 1/160s
  • Title: Outside Santa Maria del Fiore

Mechanized Horror

It’s Why I Love Art

I, like everyone, am drawn to certain kinds of art. I generally am drawn to, photography, abstract expressionism, impressionism, expressionism generally. I tend to dislike realistic depictions and prefer abstract, often obtuse allegory. When I go to museums, I tend to spend most of my time in these areas, but I try to spend time leisurely perusing though other galleries seeing what strikes my fancy. I especially tend to appreciate the depth afforded to special exhibits, but I always to the same thing. I see something I don’t care about and start to discard this event as boring. Almost always I push though this and am nearly universally rewarded with the unexpected. So was the case when I visited the Stedelijk and saw this massive collection of animated sculptures and automated art machines by Jean Tinguely! Not only was this show incredibly put together with a HUGE space dedicated to so many of his Machines, it was also interesting to see the decay of these monsters.

Photo Technical Info

  • Aperture: ƒ/2.8
  • Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark II
  • Taken: 18 February, 2017
  • Focal length: 27mm
  • ISO: 6400
  • Shutter speed: 1/80s
  • Title: Mechanized Horror