Why this blog?

To understand why this blog was created and where it got its name, start here

Wednesday, January 25, 2012


Canterbury Cathedral is the oldest and best known of Christian churches in England. It was first founded in the year 597, and was modified and extended several times. Here is the view from the west gate.
and the view from the cloisters
this is the pulpit

Uh, even cathedrals need to be cleaned and vacuumed . . . .

A pivotal moment in the history of Canterbury cathedral was the murder of Thomas Becket in 1170 by knights of King Henry II. The sculpture below is part of a shrine to Thomas who was canonized shortly after his martyrdom.
The ghostly shadow on this pillar in the crypt is said to represent the murdered Thomas . .

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

English churches

Churches and cathedrals always offer the photographer some interesting angles. Here are a few of my favorite photos from Chichester
and Winchester.
Coming tomorrow - Canterbury

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Brighton Royal Pavilion

An outstanding tourist attraction in Brighton is the Royal Pavilion, a grandiose palace built in the late 1700s by the future King George IV, son and Regent of the Mad King George III. The building looks like an Indian palace on the outside and has some stunning chinoiseries on the inside.

Too bad they don't allow photography inside, because in this drawing you can't really appreciate the colors and the immense dragon holding the chandelier.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

The English coast in winter

Patrice and I are traveling in the south of England for a few days. We are currently in Brighton, a seaside resort. Ha! The weather is foggy and rainy. Whoever thought of coming here in January?!

Brighton Pier at night in the fog
Brighton Pier in the daytime

Miles of beach, but who wants to go into the water?

Monday, January 16, 2012

Street art

Do you remember the wall covered with graffiti that I visited a few weeks ago here? We went back there yesterday and were surprised to find that the wall had been painted over in white and is now covered with a whole new set of images.
I originally labeled this art as "graffiti" but it should be more correctly labeled as "street art," don't you think?
It was a sunny Sunday, and several artists were hard at work on new images.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Flea market

Sunday's bike ride and photo expedition took us to the flea market at the Porte de Montreuil on the eastern border of Paris. You can buy tools, bicycle parts, and kitchen supplies here. In fact, you can find everything from lingerie to surplus army helmets. And since the market caters to arabic-speaking buyers and sellers, you can find a full range of dresses and headcoverings.
Need an old film camera? A calculator? Or a pair of shoes? One-stop shopping here.
There is an element of sadness about the market as people scratch among the discounted and discarded articles.
But these smiles were genuine.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Sculpture park

The weather was mild yesterday, so Patrice and I grabbed a Velib' and bicycled over to a nearby sculpture park on the Seine. We continue to experiment with our new cameras.

Be careful, Elaine. Don't drop your camera. And don't fall in the river!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Cezanne in Paris

“With an apple, I will astonish Paris,” Cézanne said. And so he did. And even today, still does.

We've seen two exceptional exhibitions featuring Cezanne in the last two weeks. The first, "Cezanne et Paris" is showing at the Musée du Luxembourg until February 26th. Cezanne is usually associated with Aix en Provence, however, he spent over half of his life painting in Paris and its environs. This is one of the more well known images from that exhibit.

This week we revisited Cezanne - plus Matisse and Picasso - at the Grand Palais for a special exhibit featuring the Stein collection. The Stein family - the writer Gertrude Stein, and her two brothers Leo and Michael, moved to Paris in the early twentieth century. They were among the first collectors of the paintings of Matisse and Picasso and this exhibit traces the impact of their support of avant garde art. Here are a few examples of the works featured here.

By the way, if you missed the exhibit in Paris, you can see it at the NY Metropolitan Museum of Art from Feb 28 - Jun 3, 2012

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Classic cars

I think I've mentioned that Patrice loves classic cars? This morning's excursion followed a classic car parade through the streets of Paris.

Patrice knows everything there is to know about every Citroen ever made . . .

Friday, January 6, 2012

Père Lachaise

This week's photo expedition took us to Père Lachaise - Paris' largest and most visited cemetery. Tourists come to see the final resting place for personalities ranging from Jim Morrison to Edith Piaf, from Molière to Oscar Wilde. There are artists, composers, and politicians; household names seen on street signs and metro stations throughout the city. The cemetery is also home to significant and moving war memorials.

I've been experimenting in black and white, but I am still overwhelmed by the choices and controls - both in the camera while shooting, as well as in post-production color balancing. Please bear with me as I learn.

We rode bicycles to the cemetery and dressed for practicality and comfort of navigating the cobblestone paths and climbing the hills. However, I felt underdressed compared to other visitors to the grave of Yves Montand and Simone Signoret.

Monday, January 2, 2012

Bonne Année

Happy New Year and Bonne Année to all of my friends, family, and loyal readers. I wish you health and happiness in 2012.