Sunday, February 10, 2008
Popular Pics 2
I wasn't kidding when I thought it might take a while to narrow down all the photos - seems like I've taken hundreds over the years. Last time I had a list of the most popular photos of mine on Flickr that other people have been looking at or searching for, but this time they are my favourites. I couldn't decide on a final eight, so you've got nine instead. First up, a chance photo of the sunset taken on board a flight from London to Edinburgh - I love the colours either side of the wing.
Next, the aptly-named Shell Beach in Tarbert, Argyll. Loch Fyne is world-famous for seafood, and the mountains of washed-up scallop shells make it look almost Mediterranean, especially in the distinctly un-Scottish sunshine. This is one of those times where you fluke something with a picture - I put the camera on my foot to get some of the shells in the foreground, and amazingly got a yacht right dead centre of the photo - I didn't even notice it was there until I checked the camera.
A long distance from Argyll - this is also called Shell Beach, and is near Monkey Mia in Western Australia. Also made from countless scallops, it stretched off in a long curve for many miles. The bus group I was with stopped for a swim because of the 35°C heat, but this proved difficult as the bay was so shallow you could walk out for twenty minutes and not get the bottom of your shorts wet. I went to take a picture of a few of the guys doing just that, when a girl who's name I can't remember ran out to snap the rest of us sitting in a line on the beach. I like this picture so much, it's the background wallpaper on my laptop - as you can see on the right of the blog there.
I don't think I'm a good photographer by any means, most of them seem to come out through sheer luck - but this was one I worked on. The only room in the Louvre with British paintings (these are by Edinburgh's own Sir Henry Raeburn), people tend to push through quickly on the way to somewhere else. I sat down on one of the benches and tried to get people in between the paintings - I think I took three or four before this woman walked past at a fair old lick, gallery map in hand, and I got her lined up just right.
The wobbly Millenium Bridge in London is one of the most photographed sites in the city - it connects the Tate Modern to St Paul's Cathedral at Blackfriars. When it was opened, 80,000 people went over it on the first day - but quickly problems with the mountings caused it to wobble, and it was closed. After an expensive refit, it re-opened and all was well. I like the line of clouds building over the dome of the Cathedral.
Scotland has some incredible scenery, and none more than the islands off the west coast. Lismore looks as flat as a piece of paper, but has a few hundred inhabitants and an important amount of wildlife. The ubiquitous blue and white CalMac ferries chug around the islands connecting everything, and I took this picture from the top of Duart Castle on the Isle of Mull, as the ferry to one of the outlying islands steams past on the way back to Oban.
I think if I had to pick a favourite of these eight, it would be this one. The monuments of Washington DC are better seen at night, as the crowds are less, and they look amazing illuminated by giant spotlights - especially the Lincoln Memorial. Made out of striking white marble, I wandered up and took a photo of Abe just as a girl decided to take a picture of herself with her mobile phone. I could get all pretentious about the light from the statue and the light from the phone - and the fact that Abe seems to be looking right at her, but I'll try not to... ;)
I'm seriously colourblind, but even I can see the greens and reds going on here. The Ganmangafuchi Abyss in Nikko features dozens of Jizou statues, to the spirits of departed children. Clothed in disctinctive red bibs and covered in moss, it's said to be impossible to count them as they mischievously move around when your back's turned, to make sure you get it wrong. They are also only found on one side of the river, as the Japanese believe they are the guardians between one life and the next.
Come on, you didn't think I could do this and not put at least one photo of Sydney in? The best view from a train station in the world - Circular Quay is on the city circle route of several CityRail lines, and is a stone's throw from the harbour. Everyone takes the bridge photo from the outside platform (or from the Cahill Expressway above, which used to be part of my walk home from work) - but if you go down one escalator and up another you can get all arty-farty and frame it like this.
Anyhow, so these are my favourite photos from my years of crazing about, excuse the pretentious post - next time I'll be back talking about pies or somethi...oohh...the top eight pies from my travels...