photography, review

Happy Anniversary to me and you!

anniversary-2xWhen I started my WordPress reader this morning, I noticed an orange icon in the upper right corner of my browser. When clicking on it, it said:
Happy Anniversary with WordPress.com!
You registered on WordPress.com 5 years ago!
Thanks for flying with us. Keep up the good blogging!
Without this notification, I’d have missed this anniversary. 5 years of stories and photos packed in 652 posts. A big thanks to me for writing all this and a huge thank you to all of you out there, for reading, liking, reblogging, pingbacking, following and commenting. You keep this blog running!
architecture, art, landscape, nature, photography, technical, travel, world

Monochrome Tuesday: Cochem

 

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btw. click on the photo to see it in a bigger size

Cochem is a town at the river Mosel. Above the town, you can find an old castle: Reichsburg Cochem.

The term Reichsburg (empire castle) is from the medieval Holy Roman Empire, a time, where the imperator has had to move around in his empire constantly to control and to govern it.

This castle was founded in the late 12th or early 13th century and reconstructed in the mid 17th century. Thus it is a good example for the neo-gothic architecture style.

Take care!

 

nature, world

bloodmoon

Hey guys, I’m totally happy. Last night we have had a moon eclipse and the weather conditions were great for taking some photos. The eclipse started here at about 2:11h in the early Monday morning and lasted until 6:27h. It was a crisp cold night with about 4°C, but a clear sky – perfect.

Several years ago I didn’t have had a proper camera for this job and the last 2 or 3 occurrences the weather conditions were too bad.

Take care!

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architecture, art, culture, history, people, photography, travel, world

Hallgrímskirkja

600_8810-e_wThere’s a big church in Reykjavik: Hallgrímskirkja

It’s the second highest building and the sixth in size of Iceland.

The design of the church is inspired by the Icelandic landscape. The walls are formed by pentagonal pillars. You can find this kind of pillars on many places on Iceland: it’s the shape of slowly cooled down lava. Basalt pillars. The bright color reminds on glaciers and the wall shape of all the columns

In front of the church you can find the statue of Leif Erikkson (Leifur Eiríksson), an Icelandic discoverer (970 – 1020). He is supposed to be the first European, who discovered the east coast of North America and founded a few small colonies there. His trips to Helluland, Markland and finally Vinland.are documented in Icelandic sagas. Scientists are quite sure about the location of Vinland: Newfoundland at the Canadian coast.

In my next post, I’ll show you another iconic monument, reminding to his trips to North America. Stay tuned!

Take care!

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architecture, art, landscape, nature, photography, technical, travel, world

Monochrome Tuesday: blowball

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btw. you can click on the image to see it a bit bigger!

You’re a regular reader and you’re surprised seeing a different topic as usual on Tuesdays? Don’t wonder. Leanne Cole, the organizer of Monochrome Madness, is currently on vacation. Though, she pauses for a few weeks. But, I put a monochrome image online for you, anyway.

Summer’s nearly over, now. Meteorologists declare September 1st to be the first day of fall, although the astronomical start of fall is tomorrow. I hope, you enjoyed your summer (in case, you live in the northern hemisphere, like I do) or your winter (in the southern hemisphere).

September 23rd is the day, when day and night are of the same length, just like on March 20th. This happens, when the sun crosses the equator. Because of the tracks of our planet through the universe is not exactly balanced with the earth rotation, these moments can differ a few hours. Thus, it is i.e. 23rd in one year and 22nd in the other. The same is true for the crossing in spring.

Take care!

 

culture, street, travel, world

funny findings in Reykjavik

600_8781_wIn every town, you can find some things that seem funny, special or even weird. That also true for Reykjavik.

Some of these things are so with intention. Others are modified by the locals and you can call them street-art. The blue bike, i.e. is used as a gate. I found 4 of them, each in a different color. So, they can also be used as a meeting point. They are used, to close the pedestrian area for cars and vans. Only in certain times, they are opened to give permission to vans to deliver goods to the shops. In the meantime, they look way better, than a common red-white colored bar.

Some shops decorated their front with statues of vikings or trolls, mythical beings from the nordic sagas. Each region or county has its own culture and that’s what make traveling so interesting.

Have fun!

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art, landscape, nature, photography, technical, travel, world

Monochrome Tuesday: I got the blues

You’re a regular reader and you’re surprised seeing a different topic as usual on Tuesdays? Don’t wonder. Leanne Cole, the organizer of Monochrome Madness, is currently on vacation. Though, she pauses for a few weeks. But, I put a monochrome image online for you, anyway.

What a funny coincidence, this weeks theme at The Daily Post is ‘monochromatic‘. As usual, I’ve put my contribution online on Friday. But, here is another one:

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As you can see, a monochromatic image does not necessarily be black and white or grayscale. Here we have blue and white.

Take care!

 

culture, street, travel, world

walking around in Reykjavik

600_9792-sc_wA trip to island is not complete, when skipping the capital, found 1786. Currently, there are living about 122,000 citizens in Reykjavik. It’s the most northern capital. A total of 320,000 citizens are living in whole Iceland.

First, I want to show you around a bit. In my next few posts I’ll focus on some of the touristic interesting landmarks.

Reykjavik has a small pedestrian area, where cars are allowed only at very certain times. Here are many shops. Some are in modern buildings other have a more traditional ambience. Although, the city is so small, I’d recommend at least one day for your visit. Or, better 2 or 3 half days. You’ll see some more details on your second or third visit. Things, you’ve overseen on your first visit.

Today’s gallery is quite large. I hope you enjoy them even though.

Have fun!

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architecture, art, landscape, nature, photography, technical, travel, world

Monochrome Tuesday: bridge

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btw. you can click on the image to see it a bit bigger!

You’re a regular reader and you’re surprised seeing a different topic as usual on Tuesdays? Don’t wonder. Leanne Cole, the organizer of Monochrome Madness, is currently on vacation. Though, she pauses for a few weeks. But, I put a monochrome image online for you, anyway.

As you might have seen, this weeks topic at weekly photo challenge at The Daily Post is ‘connected’. I already have put my contribution online on Friday evening. It was a different interpretation, than Ben from WordPress might have had in his mind, when he published the theme. Here, I have a second post for that theme. But, this time way more following his idea 🙂

Take care!

 

history, photography, technic

at the airfield

610_3142_wYesterday, I met with my friends at the monthly photographers roundtable. This time we were visiting a small airfield. The owner of this airfield, a local air sports club, organized an event. Several old aircrafts were there. All of them still in operation. I love such old aircrafts. Sports airplanes, old gliders (from the 1950s), a stunt flying aircraft from the 1960s and especially a few old biplanes. Unfortunately, there was no chance, to come closer to them. They were parked at the side of the airfield, but behind a cutoff. Thus, I have had to use my long tele lens instead of the macro lens 😦

Because of bad weather, some flights were skipped. Also the tandem drops, the hot air balloons and the night glow had to be canceled. The Pilots of RC controlled model planes with combustion engines also have had only small windows to show their skills in controlling their aircrafts at flight.

I really love those small airfields. When I was a teenager, my parents were with me and my younger brother in Lugano, canton Tessin in Southern Switzerland next to Northern Italy. Right next to the hotel, there was a similar airfield, but with a paved runway. Every free minute, I was there. Standing beside the runway at the railings and awaiting every single plane with my Kodak Instamatic 65X Box camera for 126er film cassettes. What a time! When I have heard the noise of an engine, I started running, grabbing my camera and haven a look, if there is a new aircraft arriving. I’ve collected planes on film 🙂  – No, I’m not a plane spotter, now. There is so much more outside to see. But, I still love these small airfields. Standing beside the runway, following the starting aircrafts with my eyes and dreaming of sitting inside of one of them. Most likely one of the old, open biplanes.

But today … I only have some pannings from starting and landing aircrafts, the stunt flyer and some ground activities for you.

Enjoy!

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art, meeting, people, photography, street

Weekly Photo Challenge: Connected

Here we are again, at the weekly photo challenge organized by “The Daily Post

Nowadays connected often means having a connection to the internet or being on-line.

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This photo was taken during a model photo-shooting 3 weeks ago in an urban environment.

Take care!

(as usual, you can see the photo enlarged, when clicking in it)

landscape, nature, travel, world

Seljalandsfoss

 

600_8609-sc_wThis is the last waterfall, we visited on our trip on Iceland. It is also located directly beside the Ring-Street “Route 1” and, as well as Skógafoss, well equipped with a parking ground and a camping site.

This one was even more crowded than Skógafoss. I guess, that’s because it is less far away from Reykjavik and you can do a short round walk around the falling water. There is a small cave right behind the water curtain. (Even you in the cave, you get wet!) The water falls 66m from the cliff. And the water dust is distributed everywhere. Be prepared to wear water-resistant clothes and keep your gear dry!

Take care!

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art, landscape, photography, travel, world

Monochrome Madness 2-26

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click on the photos, to see it in a bigger resolution

More and more people move in the big cities. Since the beginning of the industrial revolution in the 18th century, cities tend to be more attractive, than villages or towns. People hoped for easier lifes. Ok, a factory workers life is more constant, than the life of a farmer or a ranger. Farmers are dependant of well-meaning weather conditions: good weather at blooming time, sufficient rain during growing-time and dry weather at harvest time. Rangers instead, pray for healthy livestock and enough rain for good growth of grass to feed the animals. Being a worker instead of a farmer/ranger seemed for many people in those times a much better option to make their living. Although, they also have had to work very hard and often struggled about the different difficulties and depletion, more and more people fled in the big cities to make them even bigger.

Although, machines made the work of farmers and rangers easier, the big cities are still very attractive for many, many people. But, this time the cultural facilities are the attracting things: more cinemas, theatres, restaurants, pub, discotheques and so on. Young people move to the cities, despite the enormous high rents and the high rates of unemployment. They are more likely an unemployed citizen with only little money, than living outside the cities, but with some spare money. On the other hand, the smaller cities around the bigger (attractive) ones, are also quite expensive and the radius is bigger, the bigger the city in the middle is.

Poverty is not only a topic in small towns and villages. It’s much more important in an urban environment. Work is limited. And, the more worker offering their manpower, the lower the wages employers are willing to offer. The lower the income, the more jobs an individual worker has to accept: acquire a second job, work overtime or apply for benefit payments. A government might try to face this by proclaiming minimum wages, which also might result in a higher unemployment rate.

I still live in a small town of about 25.000 citizens (after downsizing from a 200.000 citizen city 24 years ago) and commute an hour twice a day to and from my office location in one of the big cities here in my region. But, I live outside the noise and the pollution. I like, not having to use a car for every errand. Even mid-size cities have so much air pollution caused by cars and trucks, so that many important city roads are closed for vehicles with too high off gas emissions. I’ve made my decision, and I hope, I can stand by it for the rest of my life.

You know, I live in the south-east corner of the Ruhrgebiet (Ruhr area). This area is, according to wikipedia similar to Île-de-France (Paris), Moskow, Greater London, Randstad (Netherlands) and Istanbul one of the regions with the highest density of population: about 2100 inhabitants per square-kilometer. There are living more than 5.1 million people in the inner part of the Ruhrgebiet (4,435 km²) and more than 10 million people in the wider area of about 7,000 km². Our state has 17.6 million people living in 34,110 km² and our country 81 million people living in 357,340 km².

The inner part of this area consists of 11 cities and 4 counties (with 41 small and mid-sized towns). The area spreads 116 km in east-west direction and 67 km in north-south direction. Because of the cities are so big and no city limit is noticeable, this area is also called as a Metropol Region: the cities are melted together and appear as one huge city, although all of them are independent.

The Montan industry was the main industry in the Ruhrgebiet: coal mining and steel production. Unfortunately, there were huge changes in the past decades. Most of the mines are closed and the remaining 2 (out of about 300) mines are being closed by the end of 2018. Over the centuries, about 3,200 coal mines were built, but many of them were carried to end quite soon after their opening. Also the steel production decreased dramatically. More than 1 million jobs got lost since the late 1950s and made this region to be a poor house with the highest rate of unemployment in the whole country. Luckily, the tides were turning. Although the rate of unemployment is still very high (~ 15.3% in Ruhrgebiet, while 6.3 % for the whole country), many new jobs were created in other industries.

You might wonder, why I’m writing this essay about living in urban environments. Leanne Cole asked us for this weeks Monochrome Madness for a themed photo, again. This weeks theme is, you might guessed it, “urban”.

I picked a photo taken at dawn while flying with a balloon over our region. You can see the illuminated streets lancing the city just like veins in a (human) body. And, even the meaning is similar. Main roads branch to smaller roads and end in narrow paths. Goods and people are transported and distributed by using these urban veins. All these streets provide the cities with goods, just like the veins in a body are transporting oxygen and blood plasma through the whole body to keep the body alive.

Btw. you can click on the photos, to see them in a bigger resolution. And you can see them here in a color.

Take care!

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click on the photos, to see it in a bigger resolution