Come With Me To Arles, France

I’m in France, well to be more accurate, I was. I’m home now but I did take a lot of photographs whilst I was away.

Arles is situated on the River Rhone at the point where the river starts to become a vast natural delta. As such it was an obvious site for a Roman city. Founded in the 2nd Century BC, Arles became the effective capital of Gaul, until it’s fall to the invading barbarians in 471 AD.

In modern times Arles is associated with the tragic life of Vincent van Gogh and therein lies a problem. Most of the photographs have people in them, because so many tourists want to visit this classic Provence destination.

So let’s get on with the photographs. If you want to see any of them larger just click on the photograph. By the wonders of modern technology you’ll immediately be whisked to my Flickr profile to see the larger version. I am considering a theme change to get larger photographs shown.

I suppose it’s only fitting to start with a photograph of an artist painting down by the river. But here’s the thing, he wasn’t painting a scene of the river. No, he was knocking up a quick painting of a typical Provence house with lavender and a few trees outside it. Dress to impress and hope you can sell to the passing tourist trade.

Street Artist

Arles has lots of narrow streets, which is great. For one it keeps you in shade, temperatures were starting to rise to about 28oC (82oF), not too hot, but little did we know that it was going to get a lot hotter during the week. Secondly you get to photograph lots of light and shade.

Shuttered Street

It’s Sunday morning and the town is quiet as we wander around. I’ve had a good breakfast but I’m starting to get tempted by all those pastries that are on display.

Quiche, Anyone

Or perhaps a meal or coffee in a pavement cafe, they’re everywhere. Turn into a narrow street and you’ll find a few tables and chairs outside a cafe.

Street Cafe

Like I said, “they’re everywhere”……….

Street Scene

…….and just around the corner, there’s another one. Spot the pink umbrella in both photographs.

Brasserie L'Aficion

What about those Romans? Did they leave anything behind. Well yes and no. Probably the biggest structure is the amphitheatre. Nowadays it’s used for events, including bull fighting.

Roman Amphitheatre

More cafe’s but this one is especial. Remember I mentioned van Gogh. His first painting featured the cafe shown below on a starry night.

Le Cafe La Nuit

So let’s finish our journey in the centre of the city, at the Hotel de Ville (Town Hall). On the ground floor I found this wonderfully cool area. By the looks of it the area feature in wedding ceremonies because there are lots of confetti on the floor. Dis you know that weddings in France are celebrated by civil partnership first. You can’t have a religious wedding until you have done the civil, which is the official ceremony, first.

Hotel de Ville

And so to the Place de Republique. The Hotel de Ville is to the left of the photograph and the Church of Saint Trophime to the right. The church was built upon the site of the 5th century basilica of Arles

Place de Republique

I hope you enjoyed your journey with me around Arles? Coming later in the week “Sous le Pont d’Avignon”


It’s All A Blur

Another one of those weeks when the challenge title can mean so much, depending on how you interpret it. Yes, you can always go with the guidelines laid down in the challenge but that’s all too easy sometimes. Besides, you  know me, I don’t always follow the challenge guidelines. But this week, I’m going to be good, so here goes.

The donkeys in this photograph were moving so fast that they’ve ended up blurred. Too fast for my camera to catch them. Cars are whizzing by but those donkeys are really moving.


It’s no good saying “hold it” to a moment in real life. – Lord Snowdon – on why you should shoot first and worry about the focusing on the second picture

So I’ll let you into a little secret. The donkeys were just walking along as normal. The cars are stuck in traffic and not moving, therefore I could photograph the cars without them looking blurred. Trick Photography…..

..If you get an opportunity in photography you have to grab it – they don’t come along that often. When you get the chance of a great picture, you have to identify that quickly and make the most of the situation. Whatever age you are you can do that. Even with luck, you will still have to press the shutter at the right time. You need good reflexes and you need to be fit. – John Giles

And I blew it in the next photograph. You can’t shoot in a dark area of the underground, whilst you are moving and so are the musicians. Worse still I had a really slow shutter speed. Shame really, it could have been an interesting photograph

Dark and Gritty

Finally another one of those photographs, slower shutter speed and the point of focus is to the back of the gallery. Once again I’m lucky because the lady in the foreground moved just as I pressed the shutter.

The Gallery

Well, that’s it for this week. I hope you enjoyed the photographs and as usual here’s what other bloggers are saying about this weeks challenge.

Weekly Photo Challenge- Focus – Sky Blue Pink Design
In A Mendocino Mood – Jane Lurie Photography
Clare’s Cosmos A New Happy Place
Weekly Photo Challenge- Focusing on Nature’s Mystery – By Alanna Pass
Fried Ice Cream – Just me musing
Weekly Photo Challenge- Out of Focus – Image & Word
Weekly Photo Challenge- Focus – A Girl with Geography
Photo Challenge; – Searching For Elsewhere
Weekly Photo Challenge- Focus – My Last Photography Blog
Shoot ‘N Go WPC- Focus (or Lack Thereof)

Push The Boat Out

I’m still struggling with the new schedule for the Weekly Photo Challenge. It just does not fit with my weekly schedule and so this week I’ve got a bit of a mixed bag for you.

I don’t know which is the more predominant colour here, that bright orange or the even brighter green of the benches in the shelter. What do you think? Green or Orange?

Beach Shelter

Now this is definitely green. If you are ever fortunate enough to visit Tai O stilted village on Lantau Island, Hong Kong. you will see these little tourist boats running around. Personally I preferred to walk around the village, mainly because there are far better photo opportunities.


Still in Hong Kong, if you get the chance visit the bird market, it’s right next to the flower market so you can kill two birds (excuse the pun) with one stone. Anyway, these are green birds with a little bit of red.. I’m very good at identifying birds as regular readers well know.

The Birds

Looks like I’m on a Hong Kong roll this week. This you definitely have to do. Catch the Star Ferry across the harbour from Tsim Sha Tsui to Central. It’s a quick trip across Victoria Harbour, lasting about 15 minutes. Push the boat out (not another pun?) and pay extra for the Upper Deck. HK$ 2.50 or about UK£ 0.25p, US$ 0.30c.

Celestial Star

My last one today. I’ve been playing around with compositing photos. The model is a stock photograph courtesy of Marcus Ranum

The Sword

Well that’s it for this week. As usual, here’s what other bloggers are saying about this weeks challenge

Ellen Grace Olinger – Haiku Art Site Photo Challenge- Green
New Shoots – Beyond the Window Box
A Texan’s View of Upstate New York Oh So Green
嘗試 Try – Lived in UK, Living in Taiwan
Welcome! It IS easy being Green! Photo gallery
It IS easy being green- Weekly Photo Challenge – Sunni Buchanan Photography
DAVID OAKES -IMAGES. Daily Post – Weekly Photo Challenge…..GREEN
simply.cindy Gallery of Green
“Snotgreen Sea” – Beach Books Blog
through the luminary lens Spring has Sprung

No Entry

Sometimes you just get lucky and find a potential subject to photograph without even thinking about it. But you have to have your camera with you to get that photograph, although nowadays, that’s not too hard, as most people who have a cell phone have a camera with them.  According to Mylio

….it’s estimated that about 7.5 billion people will be living on our planet in 2017. Let’s say 5 billion have a mobile phone and approximately 80% of those phones have a built-in camera. That comes to about 4 billion people who can take photographs with their phones. It’s further estimated that on average they each take 10 photographs per day – 3650 per year. That’s a whopping 14,600,000,000,000 photographs annually…or to put it another way, just over 14 trillion photographs.

So when Ralph Gibson said in 1972;

Traditionally, photography has dealt with recording the world as it is found. Before photography appeared the fine artists of the time, the painters and sculptors, concerned themselves with rendering reality with as much likeness as their skill enabled. Photography, however, made artistic reality much more available, more quickly and on a much broader scale.

Ralph had no idea of the impact that cell phones would have to the world of photography. Certainly, photographs can be made available much more quickly, one click of a button and you can share a photograph with the world. And with so many people using the camera in their cell phones, there’s no doubt it’s on a much broader scale. But how many of those 14 trillion photographs are artistic…….

To this weeks challenge

Several years back I had the good fortune to be in Universal Studios, Florida. It was coming up to Halloween and the props guys were setting up some special scenes in the streets.

No Entry

I’ve got a feeling they both had something to do with Terminator, they were still setting up, so it’s hard to be sure.

Street Scene


Anyway, that’s it for this week. here’s what other bloggers are saying about this weeks challenge.

Die and Dazzle – Fill and Feel
On the road through my lens – And the penny drops…
Steps A Round – Kimberly Balles Photography
Deep in Thought- The Road Taken – Rebecca Wiseman Portfolio
Louise-in-Btween- Embracing the Day Sunrise Road
Jackobo’s Photoblog The Road to the Top
Simply Photos Mule Train Route
Anvica’s gallery The Road Taken
The Yorkshire Dales  – Elaine’s Journey of Spiritual Awakening
Weekly Photo Challenge- The Road Taken – NJClicks

Weekly Photo Challenge: Look Up

Late again! I had every intention of getting this weeks challenge in early but with No 1 son home at the moment my time has been taken up with going out with him on various photography trips. We don’t get to see him that often, as he lives on the other side of the world so it’s nice to catch up and indulge in a practice we both share. Anyway better late than never for Looking Up. This week I’ve got a stone pillar from Wells cathedral in Somerset. These massive stone columns support the roof of the cathedral.

Stone Pillar
Fuji Finepix S9600 15sec at f22, ISO 100

Next, it’s the Breitling Wing Walkers. Those daring young ladies who strap themselves to an aircraft and are thrown about the sky as those aircraft perform a series of aerobatic moves. I wonder if they have anything to eat before performing.

Samsung GX10, Sigma 150-500mm F5-6.3 APO DG, 1/1000 sec at f8, ISO 400

Finally, three massive cranes from Clydeport, Greenock in Scotland. These cranes are used at the container and cruise terminal.

Sky Cranes
Pentax K30, SMC Pentax-DA 18-55mm 1:3.5-5.6 AL, 1.3 sec at f11, ISO 100

Well that’s it for this week. Next week I’m at the Mach Loop for a few days so hopefully I will be able to get some photographs of military aircraft flying low through the valleys, here in North Wales.

As usual, here what other bloggers have said about this weeks challenge;

Look Up Chattanooga – xtracheeseplease
Look Up #Photography Day220 – Shantanu Chandra Photography
Leanne Murphy Eucalypts near Beechworth
Indira’s Blog Weekly Photo Challenge- Look Up
Petra Omoregie Caroline Look up
handbagladyblog Day 10 of my 30 Day Challenge
A Texan’s View of Upstate New York New York Sunsets
Photographs by Timothy S. Allen Weekly Photo Challenge – Looking Up
Danny’s Photographs Look Up In San Francisco
Simple seagull – Kee Wynne Photography

Weekly Photo Challenge: State of Mind

I’m off to Berlin, Monday. For my American readers that’s Berlin, Europe not one of the many Berlins that happen to be in the USA. Just for added interest I’m now starting with a cold. I can feel the early stages coming on. Just what I really want. Which brings me to my state of mind. At the moment I’m not exactly in the mood to consider going out at night to photograph magnificent structures like the Brandenburg Gate.

Brandenburg Gate

No, maybe I’ll just stick to Street Photography this trip.

After intensively exploring many genres over the last 30 plus years I have, in recent years, focused on Street Photography as an outlet for my photographic energies. Street Photography is somewhat of a misnomer as it can be practiced anywhere people are photographed in the environment in which they are found. For some, myself included, being a photographer is as much a state of mind. – Michael Dubiner

But there again, when there are other magnificent monuments in the city, it would be too good an opportunity to miss. Look at the Soviet War Memorial in the Tiergarten which I photographed just before sunset. That setting sun really highlights the gold lettering

Soviet War Memorial

And what about the area around the Europa Centre, with the ruins of the Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church, which was destroyed in 1943, and new modern church right beside it.

Europa Centre

Right, that’s it for this week. I’ve just found out that my ultra-modern hotel does not offer free Wi-Fi. Would you believe it in this day and age? So it looks like I might be dark until the end of this week. Roaming costs in Europe are still horribly expensive, especially for data.

Here’s what other bloggers are saying about this weeks challenge;

Mainline_Matter Matchless State Of Mind
Inspired And When The Fog Lifted…
Carto’s Logbook State Of Mind — Boy & Girl
Julia’s Odyssey State of Mind – WPC
Lonely Travelog State of Mind
Julie Powell – Photographer & Graphic Artist WPC – State of Mind
Maria Jansson Photography State Of Mind
Laidig’s Broadway Waste of Mind-
Half a photograph Cheery

Weekly Photo Challenge: Treat

A treat for me is to be out with the camera taking photographs, especially if I’m in the National Park. But this week in a change I’m going to show some food. Different I know, especially as I very rarely photograph food.

We eat good food to keep our bodies healthy. I digest good photos as my visual nutrition. If I go too long without looking at good work, I feel starved. – Matt Hevezi

In my opinion it’s there to be eaten. not photographed. Besides if your messing with a camera the food is getting cold or it’s melting.

Meat and Two Veg

But I once attended a catering competition where fancy small nibbles, doubling as a main meal were laid out for photographing. What’s wrong with this? There’s not enough.

Have you ever gone to a restaurant where they serve minuscule sized treats and then expect you to pay a fortune for it?

I have and I came away disappointed. Had to stop off for a curry on the way home. anyway I digress.

Ice Cream Medley

Now these might look nice and they probably taste great but c’mon give me something I can get my teeth into.

Photography and tasty food are same. When a Master Chef can explain all ingredients in a proportionate measured level while making a dish, my mom makes it more better with approximate handful guess of ingredients at home. While learning photography, learn all the rules but according to ur creativity one can break with lot of inputs on ur own when u r in the field.. Tasty food & a good photograph matters. – Lakshman Iyer

My final photograph is absolutely beautiful. I wish I had the skill to create something like this.


I mean, how beautiful is that?

Here’s what other bloggers are saying about this weeks challenge.