A beautiful trail through Cambo Estate in Kingsbarns, Scotland in early March. Cambo Estate, just a few minutes’ drive from St Andrews, is famous in this eastern coast of the Kingdom of Fife for its national collection of snowdrop flowers. I took my children there on a rather dreary and chilly day but our walk was worth it for the view. This path leads onto a beach, which is part of the well-known Kingsbarns golf course.
Piazza del Campo and the Palio, Siena, Italy
Here below is the Piazza del Campo, the magnificent medieval town square. Sienese architecture is known for its distinctive tower designs and its black and white striped stone walls.
Every summer, the piazza is the site of a very unique event in Sienna: the Palio. It is a horse race tracing back to medieval times. The event takes place twice, once in July and once in August. Large amounts of soil are placed around the perimeter of the square and pressed down to make a firm dirt track. Ten horses with ten bareback jockeys go round this course 3 times. Before the race, there is an elaborate pageant with people dressed as knights and such. Each horse represents a contrada, or city ward. Each contrada comprises residents of a certain part of the city and has its own flag and songs. At the Palio, flags of all colours are flying and being waved as members of different contrade (plural) chant their songs and stared down rivals.
View of St Peter’s Basilica from top of dome
I’ve been going through my photo archives recently trying to weed out duplicates; for some reason the photos on my Apple devices are showing up double or sometimes even triple. While I was deleting extras, I culled out the duds and then collated some of my favourite travel photographs from over the years into albums. I found quite a few good ones from my summer in Italy in 2007.
For this picture I had climbed the many many winding narrow steps to the very top of the dome of the basilica. Boy, did that make me dizzy! It was early in the day and as I gazed out over the nearly empty plaza in front of the façade and Bernini’s colonnade, there was a sense of overwhelming grandeur. What a place! What a place! From the top of the inside of the dome, one could look over a railing and see down to the impressive tomb of Saint Peter himself directly below. Inside the church, with its dusky side chapels and shafts of dusty light coming down in long rays, I even saw the famous Pieta statue of Michelangelo, circling around it slowly and in awe. Michelangelo was one of the principle architects for the basilica, did you know?
It’s hard to believe that trip was 10 years ago. How time flies…
St Andrews Cathedral in snow, Scotland,
On a very rare snowy day in St Andrews, I took a quick walk out to the Cathedral to catch the scene before it all melted. The ruins of the cathedral usually look pretty depressing against the often-grey skies but the snow brightened up the scene remarkably, changing the whole tone for the better.
North Sea with Breakers, St Andrews, Scotland
It was a blustery and bitterly cold day in St Andrews as I walked near the West Sands beach by the North Sea to find some good shooting opportunities. The breakers were pretty big, some even surging up over the railing where I was standing and getting a few drops on my coat. Sometimes one forgets the power of the elements. I made the photo kind of “noir” to encapsulate the mysterious power of the wind and waves.
Cathedral of Siena, Italy
This is an old photo from the archives from when I stayed in Siena, Italy, for 5 weeks one summer. What a place! I am working on creating products for my online store and making postcards of places I’ve been.