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

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

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

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

Ghosts of Gondolas in Venice

Ghosts

You know that feeling you get…only sometimes, in the absence of the light. I have tried to explain how Venice changes once the sun goes down. I never explain it right. I always make it seem sinister, or like some corny spook house. Boo! That’s not it at all. It is more like the veil between realms is…more delicate there. Maybe it’s just the history. Often the oldest of places have more…personality. I love taking these long exposures at night. Despite my near von Aschenbach respiratory malady I stayed out past sunset. Even the January cold (and rain) could not keep me from the Venetian Night.

Photo Technical Info

  • Aperture: ƒ/3.5
  • Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark II
  • Taken: 25 January, 2014
  • Focal length: 23mm
  • ISO: 100
  • Shutter speed: 10s
  • Title: Ghosts of Gondolas in Venice

In the Courtyard of the Basilica of Santa Maria della Salute

Up Early

I got up early this day to walk across the Ponte dell’Accademia in Venice, Italy. I was hoping to catch the sunrise on the bridge and since I was so close I figured I would go to the Basilica of Santa Maria della Salute. You probably recognize this church from photos shot from St Mark’s Square at sunset. The Basilica dominates the view in the West from the main square, but because you have to cross the Grand Canal, its out of the way nature makes it seem almost an after thought. I was lucky to be the only person at the Basilica that morning (another couple was leaving as I was entering) and I absolutely LOVE to catch birds in flight on a wet morning!

Photo Technical Info

  • Aperture: ƒ/8
  • Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark II
  • Taken: 26 January, 2014
  • Focal length: 16mm
  • ISO: 100
  • Shutter speed: 1/100s
  • Title: In the Courtyard of the Basilica of Santa Maria della Salute

Equal Armed Cross in Venice, Italy

Keeping an Eye Out

I love the little things you find when traveling. Sure the guidebook provides some historical context and the highlights that are NOT to be missed, but often I most enjoy the serendipity that abounds when I am away from the familiar. All around, people have created beautiful things. We often fail to realize the beauty all around and maybe that is because of familiarity. This carved stone equal armed cross was on the side of a building in Venice as I walked one early morning to Santa Maria della Salute. I could have easily missed it or walked by, but instead I brought it back to share its beauty with all of you.

Photo Technical Info

  • Aperture: ƒ/8
  • Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark II
  • Taken: 26 January, 2014
  • Focal length: 35mm
  • ISO: 100
  • Shutter speed: 1/40s
  • Title: Equal Armed Cross in Venice, Italy

Inside Brunelleschi’s Dome, Florence

Way Up There

Its funny how things scale. When I went to Florence, Italy I HAD to see the Cathedrale di Santa Maria del Fiore. I have read WAY too many Dan Brown novels to pass this treat up. I like active trips and climbing the stirs to the top of the Cathedral’s dome is quite an active day. The dome is a marvel of its time (honestly of today as well) and getting through the ever narrowing and sideways passages around the dome to the top is a tad spooky!

Photo Technical Info

  • Aperture: ƒ/2.8
  • Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark II
  • Taken: 14 January, 2016
  • Focal length: 16mm
  • ISO: 1600
  • Shutter speed: 1/25s
  • Title: Inside Brunelleschi's Dome, Florence

The Emperor’s Box at the Colosseum in Rome

In Remembrance

This is the box reserved for Cesar. As a penance against religious intolerance, a Christian cross was placed here. Now, historian’s will argue, but it’s improbable that any (or many) Christian’s were thrown to the proverbial lions. It’s not that said atrocity never happened in ancient Rome, but probably not at this particular arena. Regardless, the sight makes for an odd out of place experience and a bit of wonderful photographic contrast in an otherwise ancient structure dedicated to death and mayhem.

Photo Technical Info

  • Aperture: ƒ/8
  • Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark II
  • Taken: 16 January, 2016
  • Focal length: 16mm
  • ISO: 500
  • Shutter speed: 1/320s
  • Title: The Emperor's Box at the Colosseum in Rome