Bird’s Eye View of Florence and Sienna Italy

Cathedral of Santa Maria; Duomo di Firenze

Cathedral of Santa Maria; Duomo di Firenze; copyright jmeyersforeman

Cathedral of Santa Maria; Bell Tower

Cathedral of Santa Maria; Bell Tower; copyright jmeyersforeman

Piazza del Campo; Siena Italy; copyright jmeyersforeman

Piazza del Campo; Siena Italy; copyright jmeyersforeman

It has been a busy couple of days walking up many many stairs to get the bird’s-eye view of Florence and Sienna. Up and down the cupola and the bell tower of the Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore for some of the most famous views of Florence Italy. The next day we travelled to Siena and while we were there I headed of the tower to see the view of Siena and the Piazza del Campo.

It hasn’t been all hard work, we found a great gelato shop and had some tasty cinnamon and chocolate gelato as a reward for all the walking!

Rainy day in Italy

Rainy Day Ravenna red umbrella jmeyersforeman

Rainy Day in Italy; copyright jmeyersforeman 

We have had a few rainy days, or at least rainy afternoons while visiting Italy, but the rain has not slowed down our sightseeing. The tables and chairs go unused but they are a great inspiration for street photography. The beautiful line of tables and chairs forming a leading line through the photo, to the windows, and the reflections of people and umbrellas. I think the red umbrella is the perfect example of the story coming together in one simple photo. Rain or no rain, it was another great day.

Monochrome Madness Week 34

Ravenna in the Rain; copyright jmeyersforeman

Ravenna in the Rain; copyright jmeyersforeman

I have been following and contributing to Leanne Cole’s Monochrome Madness on a fairly regular basis; her monochromatic theme post with submissions from other photographers is catching on, and the submission are growing weekly! It has provided incentive to work a little more in black and white, and not every photo looks better when converted to this format. I must say it seems to me that this is often a good options for processing when the image is taken on a rainy day!

This image taken in Ravenna Italy of all the chrome table and chairs lacked luster, and seemed busy and chaotic, converting it to a monochromatic the repetitive circle and curved lines of the tables and chairs lead your eye to the gentleman with the umbrella. That’s Bill walking ahead, I am waiting at this end of the tables waiting for him the get to just the right spot to take the photo! This image would not have been possible without the rain, had the sun been shining the tables and chairs would have been full of people!

Jump on over to Leanne Cole’s blog, check out Monochrome Madness Week 34 and let me know what you think.

Ponte Vecchio, Florence Italy

Ponte Vecchio; Florence Italy copyright jmeyersforeman

Ponte Vecchio; Florence Italy copyright jmeyersforeman 

We have been walking around Florence for a couple of days checking out all the recommended sights, seeing a few of the “must see” places, it seems there are so many more to see before we leave.  On everyone’s list of must see is the Ponte Vecchio, that crosses the Arno River. It is the most ancient bridge of the city, according to the history books, it has been rebuilt several times since Roman times. This current structure was built in 1345, on the parapets many shops. This is one only bridge that the Germans did not blow up in 1944; spared as a work of art. From the centre of the bridge is a beautiful view of the river.

One the streets of Florence there are many artists working and selling their pictures, pen and ink drawings, water colours and even small acrylic canvases, all of them quite beautiful. All of them are quite unique in their own way and they all show different attractions of this famous city. I have been admiring the watercolours, so I decided to try to make an image that looked more like the water colour paintings I was seeing and less like the photos I was taking!

What do you think, do you think I have achieved my goal?

 

the Duomo at night

The Duomo; Florence Italy by night; coypright jmeyersforeman

The Duomo; Florence Italy by night; copyright jmeyersforeman 

Enjoying Florence at night

 

Bologna Italy; abstract lines in the Piazza

Abstract lines Architecture and Public Spaces in Bologna Italy; copyrigh jmeyersforeman

Abstract lines Architecture and Public Spaces in Bologna Italy; copyrigh jmeyersforeman

IMG_7886

Abstract lines Architecture and Public Spaces in Bologna Italy; copyright jmeyersforeman 

We have been walking our feet off in Florence Italy, while I have been taking a lot of photos, I have not really had time to process any of them, so here is one more look at Bologna, and one of the great public spaces we walked through. It is a great use of lines, but I can’t decided if I like the horizontal or the vertical image better. Maybe I don’t need to choose, how about you which one do you like?

I hope you are having a great weekend.

Ravenna Italy; Art and Architecture

Basilica Di S. Vitale; copyright jmeyersforeman

Basilica Di S. Vitale; copyright jmeyersforeman

We took a short train ride from Bologna to visit Ravenna, during our day we managed to see 4 of the 8 UNESCO designated sites in the city. Pictured above is the Basilica Di S. Vitale, described in our guidebook as “The most glorious example of Byzantine art int he West”  Instead of the traditional three naves of Gothic architecture it is octagonal in shape with a central dome supported by eight columns and arches.

Basilica Di S. Vitale; copyright jmeyersforem

Basilica Di S. Vitale; copyright jmeyersforem

Basilica Di S. Vitale; copyright jmeyersforem

Basilica Di S. Vitale; copyright jmeyersforem

Not far from there the Neonian Baptistery, the oldest of Ravenna’s ancient monuments, while it is a simple octagonal building, built with the short flat brick a traditional feature of the architecture in Northern Italy. The mosaic art were made in mid 5th century.

In the cupola of the Neonian Bapistery, the Mosaic "Crhistening of Jesus

In the cupola of the Neonian Bapistery, the Mosaic “Christening of Jesus

A closer view of the centre art piece

In the cupola of the Neonian Bapistery, the Mosaic "Crhistening of Jesus

In the cupola of the Neonian Bapistery, the Mosaic “Christening of Jesus 

We also went to see the Basilica Saint Apollinare Nuovo, Ravenna Italy, first built-in the mid 5th century, the interior has been modified several times. The ceiling was last modified in the 17th century.

Basilica Saint Apollinare Nuovo

Basilica Saint Apollinare Nuovo, Ravenna Italy; copyright jmeyersforeman 

some of the detailed mosaic work of the Basilica Saint Apollinaire Nuovo.

 

The Magi_Basilica of S. Apollinairs Nuovo

The Magi_Basilica of S. Apollinairs Nuovo 

The mosaics are frescos are amazing, the photos hardly do them justice! We only had one day in Ravenna, it would be quite easy to spend 3 or 4 days enjoying the art and architecture, as well as the cafes and street life.

Now we are off to Florence for a few days!

 

San Petronio seen from the Piazza Maggiore

San Petronio, Bologna Italy, copyright jmeyersforeman

San Petronio, Bologna Italy, copyright jmeyersforeman

San Petronio, Bologna’s most famous and impressive church. It is the sixth largest church in Europe. Its size is impressive: 132 metres long by 66 metres wide by 45 metres tall with the facade reaching a height of 51 metres. Construction of the basilica began in 1390, the basilica should have been the largest in the world, but things didn’t go well: the pope didn’t approve of the idea of a church larger than St. Peters. The construction of the Basilica was put on hold for a long time, partly due to lack of funding and the technical challenges of achieving the very high Gothic vaults

Mortadella Festival in Bologna Italy

Along the Via Zamboni; copyright jmeyersforeman

 The Church of Saint Giacomo Maggiore, along the Via Zamboni; copyright jmeyersforeman 

The festival was on again, the streets were filled with people enjoying the music as well as the wonderful food.  I have read that Bologna Italy has over 53 kilometers of arcades, arch covered streets, in the historical centre, where people can walk, shop, and enjoy life.  Here is just a few images from my Sunday Street Photography practice…..

Bands play for the crowds, Bologna Italy; copyright jmeyersforeman

Bands play for the crowds, Bologna Italy; copyright jmeyersforeman  

Bubbles for the kids to chase, Bologna Italy; copyright jmeyersforeman

Bubbles for the kids to chase, Bologna Italy; copyright jmeyersforeman 

Dinner in the sidewalk cafe; copyright jmeyersforeman

Dinner in the sidewalk cafe; copyright jmeyersforeman 

 

 

Last day in Verona; foggy, rainy, but warm and worth the visit!

Ponte Scaligero, Verona Italy; copyright jmeyersforeman

Ponte Scaligero, Verona Italy; copyright jmeyersforeman

One of the many bridges of Verona, and just one of the many places we visited during our three days in the city!

Despite the weather we enjoyed our visit, and we are now off the Bologna, a short 1 hour train ride south of Verona, and with one more good night sleep I will, hopefully, be over the jet-lag, and have something interesting to tell you about our visit!