Thursday, February 21, 2013

Theme Thursday: Architecture - can I have a do over?

I was so looking forward to this week's photo challenge from Clan Donaldson. Obi is an architect, for crying out loud.

So I thought I would get some valuable insight from him concerning subject, angle, etc. But like that old saying with the plumber and his own home having traumatic pipe syndrome (isn't there a saying?) Obi was really not interested in playing along. 

His only half-hearted suggestion was to concentrate on minutia. So many unappealing, uninteresting architectural photography focuses on the piece as a whole, while the real interest is in looking at a specific element from an unusual angle. 

So he had me taking photos of things like the iron fish scale grating over the basement windows at our magnificent cathedral church. Only problem? You have to have an artistic eye and real talent to make that work. Two important factors I am woefully missing. 

I was able to put that advice to work when the subject had obvious beauty of its own, however. 

Last weekend we met some friends at Orlando's Catholic Shrine, Mary, Queen of the Universe, for Saturday vigil mass. 

So at 7:30 at night, with Obi and the kids waiting with unsuppered stomachs in the car, I snapped a few photos of the striking bronze entry doors with their haunting mosaics and bronze reliefs. 



In appropriate triptych display, the doors feature scenes from the the Old Testament, the Gospel, and the continuing Church.  This mosaic above is over the third door, Our Lady with hand outstretched in blessing over a succession of Popes. 

As I mentioned, this was at night, I used no flash, only the light that illuminates from above, and I used my camera's built in editing feature "pastel" to add some interest to a really poor quality photo.

WhaddoIthink?  It looks interesting, you see the feature from a new perspective. But I probably won't ever look at it again and I certainly won't be hanging it on any wall. But it was fun trying.

Here are some more shots for you to see the doors in context. (They are really poor quality, and I didn't want to steal someone's photos off the internet to show you what it looks like. Even the shrine's website does not have any pictures.)






The doors are by far the most impressive element of this beautiful shrine. Seeing them in person is alone enough reason to visit and pray here. If you are ever in Orlando...

17 comments:

  1. Those doors are breathtaking! Lovely shots!

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  2. I really like your top photo! I think it was a great decision not to use flash. Adds a lot of drama.

    And apparently, according to Obi, I did the right thing with my photos. Minutiae? Got it. :)

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  3. Wow, that's fascinating! I love the first photo where you can see some of the detail.

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  4. I love Obi's advice! I think that's what was wrong with my first picture. I don't have the kind of lens that can capture wide-angle stuff, and I should have focused on the detail.

    And your picture? Gorgeous. I love, love, love the angle of the shot. If there were ever a picture to show that Our Lady is all kinds of bad ass, it's that one.

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    1. Bad ass and queen of the universe are synonymous, really.

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  5. I think you're thinking of cobblers' kids being barefoot and doctors' kids being sick. But, you did a great job and Obi gave great advice. Less is more.

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    1. Oh yeah, maybe I'm thinking of plumbers and the way they wear their pants, something to do with cracks, I think, or maybe that is not a saying as much as a mental image.

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  6. I love the first photo with the ray of light and the last photo. So beautiful!

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  7. Gorgeous! Oh it's making me want to get back on the Disney trip planning kick! I need to go to Florida!!!

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  8. I absolutely love the photo. The whole time reading I was hoping you'd post the bigger shot just to see the comparison. Way cool! I love it!

    I love the little tut by Obi too...I'll remember that!

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  9. Wow, that first photo is stunning. I think your angle really captured some of the majesty and awe of the title "Queen of the Universe"!

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  10. I love mosaics! Especially considering the lighting, I think these are great!

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  11. I don't think you're giving these photos enough credit. They're great and totally make me wanna pack my bags for a visit!

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