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

Dark Canal in Amsterdam

Stepping Out of the Conventional

People who know me would likely never call me conventional. It’s almost a laughable notion, one in which I happily participate. I have been reminded of this over and over again trying to “find myself” (as if I really went anywhere other than where I am currently). In honor of these notions, I decided to dedicate the month of May to experimental work. The odd stuff I assume nobody but me with enjoy. I always seem drawn to the mistakes of the world. Somehow there is an purity most miss when all that can be seen is the difference. This photo is out of focus. It’s too highly contrasted. It lacks color. These are things you could say…but I see honest feeling, beauty and hope.

Photo Technical Info

  • Aperture: ƒ/5.6
  • Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark II
  • Taken: 17 February, 2017
  • Focal length: 35mm
  • ISO: 1600
  • Shutter speed: 1s
  • Title: Dark Canal in Amsterdam

Hyatt Villa One Night in Bali

Wandering at Night

It is not something I much do. I tend to go places with large populations, so it’s likely very safe +1 for safety. I also tend to carry around a bunch of camera gear, -1 for safety. I generally have a big tripod at night which is like a modern day mace, +1 for safety. You can see where all this gets you, overall protecting yourself and your stuff can be complicated. As such my traveling rules generally are don’t drink much in public AND be back to the hotel before the town rolls up for the night (or becomes a different world all together).

In this case in Bali, I was oddly on a resort…something I almost never do. I stayed here for three days almost exclusively and had a really relaxing time just sitting and reading by the beach. At the time, it was perhaps the perfect thing I needed. As such, walking after dark was almost entirely safe!

Photo Technical Info

  • Aperture: ƒ/5.6
  • Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark II
  • Taken: 17 February, 2015
  • Focal length: 16mm
  • ISO: 1000
  • Shutter speed: 15s
  • Title: Hyatt Villa One Night in Bali

A Beautiful Old Box in Peru

Old Palaces

I didn’t quite realize the significance of our hotel in Cusco until we had already left. It was really a transit stop for us, and most of the time we spent there was just to sleep. It was old…built for the Conquistador Pizarro. Much of the ornamentation around was old…really old, but displayed in the open. I can’t say how old these boxes were, or if they were from another time, I do know they were exquisitely beautiful.

Photo Technical Info

Didgeridoo Player on the Helix Bridge in Singapore

Eclectic Style

If nothing else, Singapore is diverse. Architecture runs from ultra modern to old world. The residents are from China, India, Malaysia, Africa. I was not entirely surprised, but it was surreal none the less, to be greeted on the Helix Bridge by a street musician playing a Didgeridoo! Oddly this is the first time I have ever seen anyone playing one of these Australian instruments. I have always wanted to play one, but unlike my native saxophone, the Didgeridoo does not come with a spit valve.

Photo Technical Info

Washington Water Power

Random Travels

My travel locations tend to be to places most everyone has heard of…Tokyo, Paris, London, Shanghai. These are my personal travels, but I also occasionally travel for my desk job. These places tend to be smaller locations that fewer people have heard or, Berne, Friendship, Palmerton, Spokane (ok…most everyone has heard of Spokane, WA). I also take my camera on these trips because you never know what you are going to find. While we were visiting downtown Spokane, we found this huge hydroelectric power plant! It was cold and a bit of a walk to get to where I took this photo, but it was well worth the frozen fingers.

Photo Technical Info

Supertrees and The Marina Bay Sands in Singapore

Supertrees are Back!

I am not sure I will get enough of the Supertrees. From early in my travels, my friend David said…I want to see an HDR picture of the SUPERTREES! It took over two years to make it to Singapore. I ended up loving the country! There seems to be a LOT happening there!

Marina Bay Sands

The hotel looks like a giant cruise ship was delicately placed on top of three skyscrapers. I really wanted to get to the upper decks of the hotel. I understand there is an amazing cheese and chocolate buffet that happens nightly…I am not sure how I kept myself away honestly!

Photo Technical Info

Servizio Gondole Venice Italy

Good Luck in Venice

I couldn’t believe my luck in Venice. Not only was the weather warm (for January) the sunset had been spectacular. Despite my worsening bronchial infection one I knew would require antibiotics, I didn’t want to leave St. Mark’s Square for the hotel. I continued to wander around as darkness overtook Venice the city began to show its other side. It’s a side of Venice I didn’t have time to find…one of dimly light, ancient cobblestone streets and masked figures.

Photo Technical Info

Bâtiment des Forces Motrices Geneva, Switzerland

It was freezing cold and the snow had begun to fall again. I guess you don’t have much to complain about when you go to Geneva Switzerland in January. It was my last night and my last opportunity on this trip to get a photo of Bâtiment des Forces Motrices … I had to go, despite the weather.

The former hydroelectric power plant on Le Rhone caught my attention when I first arrived. It has a stately sort of appearance, one from those bygone eras I love so. It’s now a concert venue and this very night while I was pelted with sleet and show, shivering outside, The Chamber Orchestra of Geneva played Mozart to warm music lovers.

Outside I struggled to keep the water off my lens and a bevy of drunken Swiss youth loitered all to close for my liking given how dark it was on the bridge where I took this photo. I feared what I captured this night was unusable and it took me almost two years to revisit what I had done that night in January 2013, but like I learn again and again with travel…leave your expectations behind and embrace what comes.

Photo Technical Info

  • Aperture: ƒ/8
  • Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark II
  • Taken: 20 January, 2013
  • Focal length: 23mm
  • ISO: 100
  • Location: 46° 12.262′ 0″ N 6° 8.3207′ 0″ E
  • Shutter speed: 25s
  • Title: Bâtiment des Forces Motrices Geneva, Switzerland

Noir Scene at the Vienna Oper House Cafe

On Alert

Traveling all over the world, you have to be alert! Some people are up to no good. Fortunately I have only had two odd experiences that didn’t escalate into something more serious. One was in Buenos Aires, the other was in Vienna. The only time someone has tried to pick my pocket was in the heart of Vienna! Luckily she was a TERRIBLE pick. Her first attempt was an announcement she was interested in my wallet (which was in my front pocket) and not the back pocket she tried to retrieve it from.

The big problem, was she must have decided I was worth the trouble because she kept following me. I was never in any danger in the crowded tourist streets, so I sat down on a bench. She likewise sat down across the street and started begging for money, and watching me out of the corner of her eye. I stared straight back at her! She finally realized I was on to her and let me be. Anytime you travel, you need to be prepared. This particular situation for more comical/sad than anything, but you never know when things might get more serious. I recommend a great book called The Gift of Fear. The world in general is pretty safe, but always listen to your gut and stay safe!

Noir World

It’s no secret I love Noir. Literally meaning black in French, the term Film Noir has been used to describe mostly crime drama’s and have had a number of notable hits including one of my favorite Orson Wells films, The Third Man. I couldn’t help but conjure up gritty black and white fantasies as I wandered the streets of Vienna. My only regret was that the streets weren’t a glistening with a never seen rain. Somehow that would have made the night perfect…along with the running of hard soled shoes across the inky wet desolate cobblestone streets as I was chased into the sewers…but I digress.

Photo Technical Info