Tag Archives: rome

Rome Revisited

copyright Shivani Shah

copyright Shivani Shah

Again, although I wish it were true, I did not actually go to Rome again (I did make a wish at the Trevi Fountain, so someday). I took another look at my photos from Rome and found a few that I shouldn’t have been so quick to dismiss the first time around.

copyright Shivani Shah

copyright Shivani Shah

If you haven’t already read it, you can see from my Paris Revisited post why I decided to look at this album again. Will I go for round 3? Maybe. For now though my goal is to shoot some more this year, since I’ve been pretty bad about taking my camera places with me.

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copyright Shivani Shah

copyright Shivani Shah

copyright Shivani Shah

copyright Shivani Shah

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copyright Shivani Shah

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Glimpses of Vatican City

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copyright Shivani Shah

With the papal conclave well under way, there are images of St. Peter’s Square all over the news, and I can’t help but think of my day spent in St. Peter’s Square and the Vatican Museum last November. The weather was gorgeous, the Square wasn’t too crowded, and I was fortunate enough to be able to see at leisure some of the world’s finest art from just inches away. Also, it’s as good a time as any to share some of my photos from that day on the blog.

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copyright Shivani Shah

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copyright Shivani Shah

I don’t have any photos of the Sistine Chapel because you’re not allowed to take any and I’m not nearly subtle enough to try and get away with it. Suffice it to say that it’s absolutely stunning and inspiring.

Best of 2012

I realise I’m a little behind on this ‘best of’ post, but I wanted to do it nonetheless. In no particular order, here are my favourite photos taken in 2012 (and a little about each one). Some of these have appeared in other posts before, so I apologise for the repetition. I guess I just really like them.

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copyright Shivani Shah

Taken at the Rodin Gardens in Paris, the photo above is of Rodin’s signature at the foot of one of the sculptures. I didn’t place the leaves where they are in the photo – these are where they had fallen naturally. I love how the one leaf sits so perfectly near the signature.

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copyright Shivani Shah

Nighttime at the Pantheon in Rome  – this is just a beautiful building and was so beautifully lit at night. I sometimes like to take photos of just a small piece of the bigger picture; it lends a certain mystery to the photo, don’t you think?

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copyright Shivani Shah

My childhood friend got married in January last year, and of course I stood up there with the hired photographers and tried to capture every moment of the ceremony. I love the detail of her lehenga and the delicate mehndi.

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I really shouldn’t take credit for this photo. I couldn’t have done anything if it wasn’t for the gorgeous natural light streaming in through the door of this store.

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copyright Shivani Shah

And we’re back to Paris. I’ve blogged before about how much I love this photo. I’ll spare you the repetition.

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copyright Shivani Shah

You may not be able to tell, but this is the Roman Colosseum. I have the standard Colosseum photos – the ones where you look at it and right away know what it is. I like this precisely because you can’t tell at first glance. Also, the sky in Rome is gorgeous.

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copyright Shivani Shah

I repeat – the sky in Rome is gorgeous.

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copyright Shivani Shah

I spent two days shooting the Mahindra Blues Festival as part of the video crew. When we weren’t shooting video, I was taking photos, and I like this one because he just looks so happy while performing.

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copyright Shivani Shah

Apparently she always sticks butterflies on the microphone while performing. I thought it was quirky and colourful.

Here’s hoping I get enough photos in 2013 that I’m happy enough with to do another ‘best of’ post next year!

Photographing New Places

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copyright Shivani Shah

I’ll be the first to admit I’m not great at the whole “carry your camera wherever you go” thing. The few times I have taken it out with me in Mumbai I’ve got some photos that I’ve liked, but when I’m in my home city and head outdoors it’s usually to get to some place or meet someone.

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copyright Shivani Shah

When I go on vacation, however, it’s an entirely different story. While I may be headed to a specific place, my favourite thing about vacations is that the clock doesn’t really matter and you can explore a city at leisure. There are no appointments to keep, so there’s no stress if you make it to your destination a little later than intended.

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copyright Shivani Shah

I have to give props to my family, because travelling with me certainly meant that we reached every destination later than intended. I’m constantly stopping to take photographs, and they wait very patiently for me to finish.

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copyright Shivani Shah

Every photograph in this post is one that I’ve taken while getting from point A to point B. Famous cities aren’t just about the big landmarks – don’t forget the people and neighbourhoods as well. And if you get lucky, you might even encounter something unexpected – like a photoshoot in the heart of Paris.

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copyright Shivani Shah

The Pantheon And The Panthéon

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The Pantheon in Rome is a gorgeous church in Piazza Della Rotonda. What I couldn’t get over every time I passed by or went in was that it is over 2,000 years old and still being used as a place of worship. The grand columns of the portico and the light filtering through the oculus are simply breathtaking. I was seriously in awe every time I saw the building.

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copyright Shivani Shah

Just around the corner from the Pantheon is Sant’Eustachio Il Caffè, which is home to quite possibly the best coffee I’ve ever tasted. Just thinking about it makes me want to go back!

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copyright Shivani Shah

I also visited the Panthéon in Paris, an equally impressive structure in the heart of the city. It appears to be bigger than the Roman Pantheon, and the crypt is certainly large enough to get lost in (I almost did).

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copyright Shivani Shah

I was most grateful to have a wide angle lens in both these buildings – my trusty nifty fifty got some great details but buildings this magnificent need to be captured entirely as well.

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copyright Shivani Shah

The wide angle also allowed me to get my favourite photo from Paris – looking down Rue Soufflot from Place du Panthéon, with the Jardin du Luxembourg and Eiffel Tower in the distance.

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copyright Shivani Shah

Of Sculptures. And More Sculptures.

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copyright Shivani Shah

If you’ve been to Rome, you’re more than likely to notice sculptures. Everywhere. From the fountains to the museums, Rome is full of some of the most breathtaking sculptures I’ve ever seen. I don’t have a single artistic bone in my body, and certainly not the hand-eye co-ordination required to be able to even mould Play-Doh, so I was just in awe of these great, ancient pieces of art just adorning the streets and piazzas and so accessible to everybody.

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copyright Shivani Shah

Although the Vatican Museum has some gorgeous paintings by the masters of art, the smaller selection of sculptures certainly deserve their place in one of the world’s most famous museums.

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copyright Shivani Shah

If I had to choose the sculpture I liked most (and I certainly didn’t see them all), it would be down to the Fontana di Trevi (Trevi Fountain) and Fontana dei Quattro Fiumi (Fountain of the Four Rivers), and I don’t think I could pick between the two.

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copyright Shivani Shah

If you’ve been to Rome, do you have one sculpture that just took your breath away?

PS: Please forgive the inundation of photos from Europe. I took a LOT of photos while there, and Rome and Paris are just so gorgeous that I love sharing them.

Black And White And Shades Of Grey, vol. 3

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The 2,200 photos I took on my recent European vacation reinforced three things I’ve realised over the course of my travels: (1) I love street photography, (2) I’m more than a little apprehensive of taking photos of strangers, and (3) I tend to convert most of my street photography into black and white.

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copyright Shivani Shah

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copyright Shivani Shah

I’ve said it often and I’ll say it again – colour can sometimes be distracting. It doesn’t necessarily mean anything or add to the photo if a man’s shirt is blue or a lady’s dress is green. If you take those details away, you’re more likely to pay attention to his or her expression or actions, and that for me is what makes the photo better.

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You can also use black and white to focus on the details you think are important to the photo, like in the one below. The couple in the shadows in the foreground makes for a nice contrast with the Eiffel Tower lit up in the background.

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copyright Shivani Shah

The bright, bright street lights and dark blue sky were all I could see when the photo was in colour. That’s certainly not the case any more.

This certainly isn’t a rule, though. One of my favourite street photography blogs, Shoot Tokyo, has a large collection of colour photographs that are just absolutely incredible. In my own work, I made the deliberate decision to leave the photo below from Sri Lanka in colour.

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copyright Shivani Shah

It just wouldn’t be the same if the bananas were in grey, would it?