Posts Tagged ‘italy’

Photos of Burano, Italy

Photo of the Day

To supplement my photos of Venice, I’ve now also added a gallery of photos of Burano, Italy, an island north of Venice in the Venetian Lagoon. Bright, airy and bursting with colour, Burano has a wholly different character from the moody chiaroscuro that dominates much of Venice. The rainbow colours make the whole town feel like a playground.

Please visit the gallery to see more.

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Burano, Italy

A Walk in Venice

Photo of the Day

I love this couple. I don’t know them, but for the short time that they appeared on the top of this, one of Venice’s many bridges, they blew me away just with how much character they radiated.

As I wandered this particular Venetian street, I was first struck by the quality of the light glowing from the backs of every person that climbed this bridge. That was my cue to set up shop and wait for the right person or people to enter the frame to fill out the scene and make the most of the brilliant rim light.

A while later, my patience was rewarded by this couple.

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A couple walk over a bridge in the Cannareggio district in Venice, Italy.

Grand Canal Sunset

Photo of the Day

Today’s photo of the day is another one from magical Venice. My full gallery of photos of Venice is now available for your viewing pleasure.

For this image below, I snuck through one of the narrow back alleys that seem to lead nowhere in an effort to find this view of the Grand Canal with the sun setting over it. After the alley widened nearer to the canal, I found a small restaurant/bar lived at the end of this tiny side street and its patrons were happily watching the skys colours reflect in the canal while sipping on a drink and dangling their feet off the jetty. What seemed like a secret to me was, of course, not so hidden for the locals.

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Grand Canal Panorama

Photo of the Day

This classic view from the Rialto bridge is a favourite among visitors and locals alike. You can’t blame them – it’s one of the best places to witness Venice’s magic.

This has to be one of the most photographed spots in Venice, so it’s a challenge to come up with something different from every other photo that has been repeated in the same location. By making this a panorama, I know I haven’t exactly broken new ground, but it’s a least a little bit different from the norm.

The wider format allows for a greater sense of place. It includes more of the surrounding buildings and the paths teeming with pedestrians along both sides of the canal. Gondoliers moving across the waters add to the interest of the evening scene.

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Running through Venice

Photo of the Day

Of course, Venice has its share of picturesque scenes apart from canals. In today’s photo of the day, a young boy sprints through Venice’s narrow alleys while the sun creates dramatic light and shadow in the background.

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Ethereal Venice

Photo of the Day

Walking in Venice sometimes feels like a dream. It’s such an otherworldly place it often doesn’t quite feel real. Today’s photo of the day was an experiment to try to capture some of that dreamy mood.

The strange blurring in this photo is the result of doing a long exposure in the middle of the day with the gondolas moving slightly in the foreground. Thanks to a brand new 10-stop neutral density filter, I was able to make a 60-second exposure in the bright sunlight.

If you don’t know how a neutral density filter works, here’s the idea: essentially, you’re just putting some dark glass in front of your lens. That means that less light is reaching the sensor, so in order to get a properly-exposed image, more light will somehow have to be let into the camera. Usually, with an ND filter in place, that is achieved by lengthening the exposure time. So, with a 10-stop filter, you have to let in a lot more light and you get get exposures of one minute or more like this one.

What I like about this result is the mix of sharp subjects with the blurred. The long exposures turns the gondolas into ghost ships on top of a silky-smooth sea with clouds appearing to dart past in the sky, but the poles and buildings all remain completely sharp and solid.

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Before Dawn in St. Mark’s Square, Venice

Photo of the Day

With my well-located B&B, there was only four bridges in between leaving the door and reaching St. Mark’s Square, one of the central landmarks in Venice. That made it easy for me to roll out of bed before sunrise to try to capture the square in the blue pre-dawn light. Well, as easy as it ever is to wake before dawn.

The advantage of being awake at this hour is, of course, there’s no one else around. A shot like this would be pretty tricky to get in the evening with throngs of tourists crowding every available space in the marvellous square. Instead, the only other people around seem to be photographers with the same goal of catching that elusive tourist-free shot.

In this shot, you get The Doge’s Palace on the left side of the image with the distant campanille of San Giorgio Maggiore across the water. I shot this with a long lens that has compressed the perspective considerably making the tower appear much closer than the 500 metres away that it actually is.

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The Bridge of Sighs

Photo of the Day

A couple weeks ago, I had a gelato-fuelled romp through Venice, Italy. A week of traipsing through Venice’s narrow streets left me with some sore, blistered feet, but I hardly cared – after all, I had just spent a week in Venice! Can’t ask for much more than that.

The incomparable group of islands rising from the North-Italian lagoon are unique and magical. There’s really nowhere else like it. Buildings rise straight up from the water and often only leave space enough between them for a couple people to uncomfortably pass each other. That means, of course, there no room for cars and that’s almost one of the most exceptional aspects of the city. Most urban environments are so shaped by automobiles that the absence is striking.

Venice’s canals are waterways to other cities’ motorways. The Grand Canal makes a reverse-S-curve sweep through the city and its banks offer some of the best opportunities for escaping the shadows of the narrow streets. Gondolas bob over the waves churned up by the vaporettos, supply boats and water taxis on the busy thoroughfare.

But the gondolas are more at home in the small canals where fewer motorised boats can fit. Gondoliers expertly maneuver the small boats through these cramped passages usually while transporting a lovestruck couple immersing themselves in Venice’s romance.

In this photo, one such couple enjoys the tranquility below the Bridge of Sighs, one of Venice’s more famous spans. The bridge was so named due to it being the supposed last view prisoners would have of Venice before their condemnation and the sight they beheld would cause them to wistfully sigh at all they were leaving behind. The Wikipedia article on the subject, however, suggest that Lord Byron’s name for the bridge imagined the past a little more vividly than the truth.

Today, the sighs come from visitors marvelling at the beauty of Venice.

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