Europe

Life Thur the Lens 12/52.... This Thing we Do

The Good, The Random, and The Fun....

We started a fun tradition while we were in Europe. I have a slight obsession of taking photos of my people walking away from me. I like to capture whatever it is they are looking at, or are heading towards. My only regret is that we did not start this in time to capture a couple countries... England and Holland

France

Austria

Ireland

Luxembourg

Belgium

Italy

Switzerland

Germany

I have to say, this is not the easiest shot to set up. I like the shot to include the view as well, not just our backs. And, of course we always had to find and area where I would not worry about someone snatching my camera once I turn my back on it. But, it was all worth it because these are my favorite shots of Europe. 

We have carried on the tradition since returning to the U.S. because....

"Tradition, tradition! Tradition!
Tradition, tradition! Tradition!"

~ Fiddler on the Roof

I'll be visiting these lovely communities this week... join along... The Good, The Random, The Fun, Trough My Lens MondayImage-in-ing, Our World Tuesday , Song-ography,  Wordless WednesdayWednesday Around the WorldLittle Things Thursday, and Friday Photo Journal.

WHAT DOES YOUR LIFE THRU THE LENS LOOK LIKE???

 

1. Share your life through the lens past, or present.

2. Grab my button and/or link back to this page, so others can find our community.

3.  Visit at least one person and create a community with them through encouraging comments.

The RULES:

~All forms of photography accepted… keep it family friendly please.

~Anyone with any photography skill can participate… we are all learning and growing.

~Any camera you take pictures with is acceptable… the best camera is the one in your hand.

~The link-up will open at 8:00 A.M. Mountain Time. 

Life Thru the Lens 11/52... WWI in Belgium, the final push, Ypres (Leper) Belgium Part IV

We are back to Belgium for our final push of our World War I weekend tour. We ended our tour at Ypres (or Leper) Belgium. The main reasons we wanted to visit Ypres was to visit: the Tyne Cot British cemetery that lies just outside of the village, the Sanctuary Wood Trenches, the Canadian Memorial, The Changing of the Guard at Menin Gate,  the Ypres fortress and ramparts, and the Flanders Fields Museum. We managed to pack that all into a day and a half, but by far the best part was the Changing of the Guard at Menin Gate. 

The Good...

While I did take photos at the beginning of the ceremony, I videoed the ceremony itself. I think it is important to video when you tour, just as much as it is important to capture the moment in photographs. 

Unlike photographs, when you video you are able to capture not just the culture of a place but the tiny nuances such as sounds, dialects, and the general feeling of a place, or event. Photos would have never captured the all consuming feelings of deep honor, and tradition, that the ceremony evoked. 

The Random....

The red poppy was the first flower to spring new life in, and around, the battle fields and cemeteries of Flounders. It is as much symbol of hope and new beginnings, as it is a symbol of the lives lost. At the American cemetery in Normandy, we were told that the first flower to bloom on a gravesite is the poppy. I do not know if that is truth or myth, but I do like the thought of the delicate petals flowing in the breeze that blankets the land during spring; the poppy is a reminder that good can spring forth from tragedy. 

The Fun...

The Tyne Cot British Cemetery, and the Canadian Memorial, were some of the most stunning and well maintained cemeteries we visited. Each gravesite was beautifully planted with colorful gardens and every single headstone was perfectly straight. We were quite overwhelmed by the beauty of it all. 

If you would like to see where all we have been in Belgium WWI tour, check out these posts... Part IPart IIPart III

I'll be visiting these lovely communities this week... join along... The Good, The Random, The Fun, Trough My Lens MondayImage-in-ing, Our World Tuesday Wednesday Around the World, Little Things Thursday, and Friday Photo Journal.

What does your Life Thru the Lens look like?

1. Share your life through the lens past, or present.

2. Grab my button and/or link back to this page, so others can find our community.

3.  Visit at least one person and create a community with them through encouraging comments.

The RULES:

~All forms of photography accepted… keep it family friendly please.

~Anyone with any photography skill can participate… we are all learning and growing.

~Any camera you take pictures with is acceptable… the best camera is the one in your hand.

~The link-up will open at 8:00 A.M. Mountain Time. 

Ireland, the land where dreams are made

One of our last trips in Europe was to Ireland. We decided to focus our attention on the West side of Ireland, instead of heading to Dublin. When it came down to what we wanted to see, we all agreed the countryside was priority.

We quickly decided that when we traveled in Europe we wanted to see things that were not the norm for a tourist to visit. We wanted to take our time and linger on country roads, with the sudden stop of the vehicle for me to snap a few photos. We wanted to do more than observe the countries we visited, we wanted to experience them.

We decided to truly experience a country we had to...

1. Stay there for longer than a couple days; We needed to live there for at least a week.

2. We had to choose a location to rent a holiday home that was not located on a well worn path. While we rented that house, we would purchase food from local venues, and we would learn the village that we were nearest.

3. We would explore the area by traveling down roads that lead to no particular destination.

4. Most importantly, our days would not be so scheduled out that we could not linger in the morning light drinking our cuppa, or stop at a little something that intrigued us along the way.

In Ireland, we shopped at the local grocery store, and ate at little hole-in-the-wall pubs, we watched wedding parties celebrate their new unions, all while being quiet observers. The people where friendly and cheerful, full of boisterous laughs; the Irish are a colorful bunch.

Ireland was a country of intense color, not only among its people, but also within its landscape. From brilliant greens, to deep sea blues, every turn lead to a new texture and a new vista to consume your entire thought process. At times, it felt overwhelming to try to take in such beauty.

On our last trip in Europe, as we sat at a Bavarian bakery, we reminisced about each place we had visited, and came up with a top 5 list. The order was random because we deiced that at any point each of these five could move to the top; they all were equally spectacular.

  • Ireland
  • Switzerland
  • Holland
  • France
  • Germany

Ireland was an easy win for one of the spots. It would be hard not to include an island that holds the place where our Irish dreams came true.

Vianden Luxembourg... 3 things to take pictures of when traveling

Vianden was the first "official" trip we took out of Germany. I remember being a bit nervous about crossing the boarder for the first time. And then, I remember The Thinker, and I, laughing as we recounted that experience on our last trip to Vianden, in 2011.

Vianden is a quaint little village tucked away in the Valley of the Seven Castles, in Luxembourg. It was also the chosen place of exile for Victor Hugo. After visiting, it is not hard to understand why Hugo was called to the village. It swelled with soothingly peaceful alleys, tucked between crooked buildings, that echoed a history of time and stories into one's soul.

Based on some regrets I have about what I did not capture while we were in Europe, I came up with a few "must capture" moments of travel...

1. The little things. We all think about the big tourist things to capture, The Eifel Tower in Paris, Big Ben in London, but I wish I had captured more of the little things. Like, cups of coffee in Italy, street views in Paris, gutters with "look right" in London, and stunningly clean sidewalks in Switzerland. I wish I would have taken photos of the essence of a place, rather than the landmarks of a place.

2. My people. I actually have trips where I was so engrossed in capturing the environment that I completely spaced capturing my people in the environment. I do have "a" photo of us from every place we visited, but I wish I would have captured more of the everyday, moments. I notice as I look back through our photos that, in the beginning, when photography wasn't so much about capturing that perfect photo I did capture a ton of my kids just being a tourist. But, as I began to think more about creative composition, and techniques, those moments went away. Do not forget about the everyday moments.

3. The environment. I wish I had taken more photos of wine bottles lined up on tables at festivals as drunk Germans celebrated the season. Or, tables stacked full of dishes after a three hour meal as a group of friends departed for the evening. I wish I would have taken photos of umbrellas lined up in the doorways to stores, or people walking on the walkplatz in the rain. I wish I had captured people more in their environment.

When you are out exploring the world, do not forget to capture your exploration in the very tiny nuances.