Welcome/Willkommen!

Hello and welcome. Hope you enjoy the images I have posted. Please do not reproduce them without my permission. Most are available as note/greeting cards or as prints/enlargements. Thank you for visiting my site and your comments.
Many have asked about the Header image above, which I named 'Eerie Genny'. It was originally shot with film [taken on the shore of the Genesee River near the Univ. of Rochester]. During the darkroom development, I flashed a light above the tray. The process, known as 'solarization', produces eerie, ghostlike effects; some have mistaken this image as an infra-red photo. Some 35+ years later, I scanned and digitized the print, and did a little modern day editing, and, voila.
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Thursday, February 22, 2018

Sicily 1: Palermo 1 [Sky Watch Friday]

Having had a wonderful experience in 2005 on a Greece tour with Studiosis, we decided to join them for a trip to Sicily in 2006. One of the attractions for me, strange as that may sound, was the fact that there are more Greek temple remains in Sicily than there are in Greece. [This is due to the fact that there were many Greek settlements all along the extensive coastline; and, of course, they attempted to recreate their temples in the new land.] Still, I was somewhat apprehensive because I believed that Sicily would be barren, dusty and dirty. To my great delight, that was nothing further from the truth. Our tour began in the large port city of Palermo, the capital of Sicily. NOTE: The map below summarizes our itinerary over the course of our 12 day tour


Over the centuries Palermo was under the control of Roman, Arab and Norman dynasties. While little remains of those bygone times, the influence of middle eastern art and architecture can be seen in its churches. At the time we arrived in Palermo, an intense political campaign was already in progress. One could deduce that simply by looking at the cluttered bill boards. I guess no one bothered to remove earlier posts.


Two churches of significance within the city are the Cathedral and La Martorana. The Cathedral was originally constructed in the 12th century, but has undergone frequent rebuilding. The portal is from the 15th century [top image]; the Baroque dome was added in late 18th century [bottom image].

 

Originally built in mid-12th century, La Martorana boasts a colorful Baroque interior, decorated with frescoes and mosaics, such as Christ crowning Roger II, a 12th century Norman King of Sicily (top image).






Of distinctly different architecture is the 12th century Benedictine monastery of San Giovanni degli Eremiti (also built by Roger II). Its distinctive 5 domed structure was built by Arab-Norman craftsman. It is surrounded by gardens filled with citrus trees, pomegranate and rose bushes.


Thursday, February 15, 2018

Greece Skies 2005: Santorini 2 [Sky Watch Friday]

We remained on Santorini for three days, during which time we got to do a little exploring. In addition to the vast array of colorful private houses, there were also some impressive larger structures. Some of my favorites are below.





Besides the lovely towns, there are unusual black beaches, which contain the remnants of volcanic lava. As you might imagine, they are not particularly enjoyable to walk on.



The last leg of our tour was to Heraklion and Knossos in Crete. Unfortunately, I do not have any images that contain any sky....imagine that!  So, postings of our trip comes to a ‘premature’ end here.

Thursday, February 8, 2018

Greece Skies 2005: Santorini 1 [Sky Watch Friday]

From Naxos we took a ferry through the Aegean Sea to the volcanic island of Santorini. Perched high atop cliffs surrounding an underwater caldera [a giant crater produced by a volcanic eruption in the 16th century BC]. The zig-zag line running down the middle of the image is the route to the village on top. One can go up either on foot or on a donkey. We chose neither, as we had a bus to get us up there.


The two main towns, Fira and Oia, clinging to the cliffside, are known for their white-washed and colorful houses. I don’t remember which image below is from which town. In any event, every which way one looked, it was a feast for the eyes.




Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Greece Skies 2005: Naxos [Sky Watch Friday]

I finally get to actually begin posting photos from our trip to Greece in 2005. Two firsts here: these images were shot with my first digital camera, a relatively simple KODAK model Z1015. And, this trip was our first with an organized tour group, as we had always preferred to be on our own. However, sometimes it makes sense to join a tour and do things that might otherwise been inconvenient. So, we signed up to travel with a German group, Studiosis, which was restricted to a small number of islands. My wife speaks fluent German [she grew up in Braunschweig], and I could understand /speak the language enough to get by. After assembling in Athens, we all took a ferry to Naxos. Our first glimpse of the port of Matthiassos Village is below.


Through some snafu, there were no porters to help transfer our luggage from the ship to the hotel. I remember a long, hot and sweaty trek through the streets. But, once situated, we were ready to head out to see the iconic gate of the Apollo Temple, which we could see from our hotel [below].


This walk was decidedly easier than the earlier one with our luggage. The marble gate [dating back to ca. 600 BC] is all that remains of the temple [Top].  The middle image shows the route we took to reach the gate. The bottom image was taken as sunset approached.




We remained on Naxos for four nights, using it as our base pf operations to explore Naxos itself, as well as several other islands. The last two images were shot on Naxos. I don’t remember anything about the towers below [except that the one on the left is solid marble], nor where we were in this rugged landscape.



One of the islands that we did on a day trip was Delos. It is renowned for its history/ruins. The row of iconic lions is grand, but, theyare not the originals. Those are safely housed in a museum, which I did not know that until much later.

Thursday, January 25, 2018

Greece Skies: 1966 [Sky Watch Friday]

In my last posting three weeks ago, I indicated that I would resume with shots from a tour we took to Greece in 2005.  Actually, our first trip there dates back to 1966, when we drove in a VW Beetle  from Munich, Germany through Italy and Yugoslavia all over Greece. Back then, I was shooting Kodachrome 2x2 slides, and storing them in plastic Vis File pages. This proved to be a bad idea, since after several decades in loose leaf binders, they managed to accumulate specks of dust and dirt [which are obvious in the top two images]. I discovered that when I decided to put them through a digital scanner. It was quite a chore trying to remove the spots pre-scanning and post editing.  Having said that, I will delay again posting the 2005 shots and show you some 'ancient' images from this earlier trip.
Our first stop was in northern Greece in Meteora where monasteries were built atop giant sandstone pillars, starting in the 9th century A.D. To quote Wikipedia: “Access to the monasteries was originally (and deliberately) difficult, requiring either long ladders lashed together or large nets used to haul up both goods and people. This required quite a leap of faith – the ropes were replaced, so the story goes, only "when the Lord let them break". Until the 17th century, the primary means of conveying goods and people up and down was by means of baskets and ropes. Below are two shots that give some sense of the scale of these constructs.




Leaving Meteora, we headed south to Delphi, home of the Oracle of Apollo. The remains of a temple, an amphitheater, and several other structures are built into the mountainside. We happened to arrive during the filming of what appeared to be some religious rite in the temple [below].


 As the sun was going down, the light was magical. The shots below were taken higher up from the theater.


The last shot was taken in the harbor area of a place I do not recall. I found it fascinating how the fishermen worked together as a team mending their nets.


Thursday, January 18, 2018

Sky Watch Friday: Aruba Skies

In my last posting three weeks ago, I indicated that I would resume with shots from a trip we took to Greece in 2005. After returning from vacationing in Aruba, to the bitter cold of Rochester, NY, I have reconsidered. I think that looking at images of sun, sand and sea is what I need to do at this time; so, Greece can wait another week. [NOTE: Somewhere buried in my blog archives are other shots from Aruba, an island we have been visiting for more than 20 years. I apologize if any of the images below bear any similarity to earlier images. Having said that, here are my newest (cell phone) shots.] Immediately below is a pair of the famous Divi trees; they have been bent in the direction that the trade wind blows.




Here is a portion portion of Eagle Beach, Judged by Trip Advisor to be #3 among the top beaches world-wide.


Thursday, December 28, 2017

Prague 6: Some Culture [Sky Watch Friday]

This posting will complete our tour of wonderful Prague. I must apologize to SWF for not showing any sky today; but, since it is #6 in the series, I am taking the liberty of showing them.
The morning of our last day began with an exploration of the Museum of Modern Art. This mirror-like wall near the entrance is difficult to describe. At first glance, I thought that the shimmering reflections was due to water running down the wall surface. But, actually, if I heard it correctly, huge fans were blowing air behind and against it. Evidently, the wall surface was flexible and fluttered under the powerful air stream. [If you look carefully, you can see me in the upper left quadrant wearing a beret and taking the shot.]



One of the featured exhibits was that of Ai Weiwei, the Chinese dissident artist. It was an homage to refugees. The structure below seems to depict the plight of faceless ‘boat people’ in flight. The scale of the raft is enormous, easily 100 meters long [look at the individual standing below it in the right hand corner].


On our own for the afternoon, we walked to the Mucha Museum. Alfons Mucha was a prominent Art Nouveau artist in the early 20th century. In my post of St. Vitus’s Cathedral [see Prague 2], I showed his  stained glass window. The exhibition contains an overview of the work of Mucha featuring a set of posters made during his ‘Parisian Period’ [188701904],  including those made for the actress, Sarah Bernhardt. They are all in soft pastel colors, as seen in the samples below.




We rode back to the hotel by tram [seniors 70 and over can ride the bus, tram, or metro free of change]. After dinner, we were transported to the National Theater where we were treated to a performance of Antonin Dvorak’s opera, Rusalka. The interior of the theater was beautiful and ornate. My cell phone shots do not do justice to its grandeur.



This concludes our Vienna-Budapest-Prague trip postings. I hope you enjoyed them; I will return in mid-January with images from our Greece trip in 2005.