Amsterdam

It´s been a while since my last entry on this blog. The year has been very busy so far with a lot of ups and downs which kept me away from living my photography life as usual. Some days ago I was near Amsterdam for business and I decided to took the rest of the day of and spend it with some street phothography. All the photos you see, have been taken with the Leica SL and the 75mm 1.8 Voigtländer at F/1.8 . Photos are unedited, I took the jpegs straight of the cam, just a little cropping for composing. 75mm for street? Only one lens? I love to do this. When I had my Canon 24-70 at some stage I realised that most of the photos where taken at 70mm. So, it seems to be my length of choice. I hope you enjoy it. Please klick on photo to get a full view.

Yes, I know that there is more about Amsterdam than the Red-Light District, but I wanted some atmosphere and neon signs at night.

When I arrived at Mokum, there is a floating chinese restaurant outside the parking. Cheepest parking in Amsterdam … but – take everything with you!

I didn´t do a lot of architecture, but it is very interesting to see how many non-affordable hotels there are 😉

A quick model shoot …

On my way to the Red-Light District. A typical Cafe.

Do you know how many bicycles there are in Amsterdam? According to the most recent figures, the 850.000 residents (442.693 households) of Amsterdam together own 847.000 bicycles. That represents 1.91 bicyles per household. 78% of people 12 years and older owns at least one bike. Bonus fact: each year between 12,000 and 15,000 bikes are fished up from city’s canals. And it looks like this one is going to the canal as well … 😉

I checked in my hotel and went to my favourite bar, the Hill Street Blues. I met this red head there 🙂

 

After a nice IPA I started to walk through town. Food is very important. You have nice little shops everywhere. I had some vietnamese street food later.

 

Good neighbourhood … Do you know how many people live in Amsterdam? Nearly 850.000 in Amsterdam, and altogether about 2.5 million in greater amsterdam.

Old Cafe´and Coffee shop … you can smell both at every corner …

People were friendly when I asked them if I could take a picture …

 

And than the horror began …

It is really a long time ago since I´ve been to the Red-Light district at night, so like everywhere else in the world, it has changed too …

Even on a Thursday night there a groups of men and women, drunk to the max and doing what they call party.

There is a reason why it is called Red-Light District …

Some black&white impressions …

Living by the water …

Drunk Italians …

The last shot before I went to sleep …

Next morning …

Isola dei Pescatori

Isola dei Pescatori , or Upper Island because of its more northerly situation than the other islands in the Gulf, is the most picturesque of the Borromean Islands, as well as the only one to be permanently inhabited. Distinctive features of its ancient little village are narrow lanes with characteristic two-storey houses, with long balconies traditionally used for drying fish; the island’s inhabitants earn their living mainly by fishing and tourism. Its unmistakable skyline is punctuated by the pointed spire of the Church of San Vittore, which rises above the red roofs of the houses; its shore is always occupied by the little boats of its fifty residents. It becomes even more atmospheric in the evening, when the whole island is discreetly lit up, a living picture reflected in the calm waters of the lake. An anecdote recounts that in 1835 Mussolini and the other participants in the Stresa Conference came to the island one day on a whim, to try the area’s best-known dish of perch. On the island you can’t miss the Church of San Vittore, a national monument, which still has its original apse with a single lancet window dating from the 11th century. Inside is a 16th century fresco of Sant’Agata, some 17th century paintings, and wooden busts of the apostles Peter and Andrew, the patron saints of fishermen. I came here for the second time and I highly recommend the Osteria Ara 36 – delicious fish and nice wine.

Torino

Torino, a very underestimated italian city. The first time I came here is 20 years ago and it was in spring time. I remember that it has rained at night and in the early morning the streets were still wet. This time it was boiling hot …

Isola Bella – Lago Maggiore

Whether inspired by the Gothic spires of the nearby Duomo of Milan or obsessed to formulate an imaginative pyramidal Italian version of Versailles, the Borromeo family’s island showcases, Isola Bella and Isola Madre, make for Lake Maggiore’s unrivaled architectural and botanical wonders. Isola Bella’s grandiose palazzo and over-the-top gardens are in stark contrast with the more reserved Isola Madre, an Arcadian showcase for some of Europe’s most extraordinary species of trees, flowers and shrubs where for the past several centuries its magnolias, myrtles and rhododendrons have all ‘exceeded their maximum growth. A former Tuscan family exiled to Lombardy during the Quattrocento, the Borromeo family rebuilt their fortune and power during the following several centuries, acquiring vast swaths of land around Lake Maggiore. In 1632 Count Vitaliano Borromeo began developing islands in the lake, turning once unembellished natural escarpments into palatial picturesque environments, reflecting the Borromeos’ incomparable social stature. Thus, among several of their endeavors, Isola Bella and Isola Madre were transformed into grand residences, while a third island, Isola Pescatori, was left as a fisherman’s island.