Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Special guest: kemoauc

Cellar

Our today guest is Joerg ( Kemoauc on flickr), coming from Hemmingen/Württ, Germany. A bright representative of the HDR style, he established his very own way of processing images. Some would categorize it over the top, but it is actually a wonderful painterly style, that touches the eye in a very pleasant way, rendering a lof of emotions. What we enjoy about his photography is the richness of colours, the fact that even the picture keep a dark atmosphere, the details are very present and vibrant. Joerg's work is one of those forms of art that is always a pleasure to watch and that can convince the enemies of HDR about the full power of this style. Please admire the selection we prepared for you.

Sh(r)ine

L.A.S.E.R. Mk.II

Streetworker

Incoming

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

From Che Guevara to another beer - graduation time


The school in Denmark is over. After a very rigorous examination, the gymnasium is completed, settling more or less the future life of the students. So it is again that period of the year when you see young people, wearing for the whole week their sailor like caps, called Studenterhue. The cap is decorated with a colored band, representing the field of study. They all look happy to finish an important stage of their life and to start a new one. But the new one can wait. Its party time!

And the Danish students celebrate the graduation in a very unique way. The next weekend after school ends they are marching through the city in a special decorated truck accompanied by the sounds of horns and whistles. The lorrys are decorated with banners (including class name or different messages), balloons, tree branches. Sometimes the anarchic spirit of the kids reveals, so you can see banners with "Fuck the system!" or the picture of Che Guevara, the famous south american revolutioner. But what is common to all of them is the loud music, the dance, the large quantity of beer and other alcoholic drinks and the joy of the participants. They shout all day long, cheer the people, posing for photos. Is that day of their life when they own the whole world.

Walking around Nyhavn and Kongens Nytorv during the graduation weekend, shows the patterns of a ritual. Lorry after lorry, they stop in square, all the kids getting off the truck and pouncing to the equestrian statue of Christian V. After the assault, the ritual is object of the imagination of each group. Some try to climb on the horse, other will pee on the grass or pour some champagne into the mouth of their colleagues. Most of them will just try to have a picture sitting on the plinth. After this, the lorry is continuing its way through the city and a new group is coming to honour the memory of Christian V.

Monday, June 27, 2011

A Midsummer Night's Dream


Last week, in the June 23th evening, there was the celebration of the summer solstice. We decided to see this in the Tivoli park, were the festivities are performed on the large lake located in the middle of the park. Not the best choice in the world, as the location was very stuffed with people having exactly the same aim as us: observe and take photos of the festivity.

What is Midsummer? There is a scientific explanation for it: summer solstice, the day of the year when the Earth's semi-axis is most inclined towards the sun. Even if the above mentioned astronomical condition is a punctual time moment, the whole day around it is called as Midsummer. More interesting are the cultural/religious meaning of Midsummer. It is arguably a mixture of pagan and religious practices, celebrated between June 21-24 in different countries. It might be a ships ceremony on Danube like in Austria, a mock wedding in Brasil, bonfires in France of Denmark, specific dance and fairs as in Romania or various fertility rites in Russia or Finland. As the day coincides more or less with the nativity of Saint John or his various forms in different languages: Juan, Ioan, Ivan, Hans, Jovan, Jean or João, it was widely accepted in the Christian religion as well, although most of the practices are having their roots from pre-Christian times.

In Denmark, the tradition of Sankt Hans aften ("St. John's Eve") goes back from the old Viking times, when the people were visiting healing water wells or were making bonfires to burn the witches who was personifying all the evil creatures and spirits. Today only the bonfire part is cerebrated, sometimes textile version of the witches is thrown into fire. This rite is having the origin in the old times of Christianity when the women suspected to do magic stuff were burnt. The burning sends the witch to the place were the tradition says thet are gathering: Bloksbjerg (the Brocken mountain in Germany). A song written especially for this ceremony by Holger Drachmann in 1855 is sung every year : "Vi elsker vort land..." ("We Love Our Country").

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Copenhagen Pro 2011


10 Days of skateboard madness this is what they called CPH Skate PRO on their official website. And it was true. For someone not into this phenomenon, it was a very nice experience of seing wonderful skateboard moves and tricks, people that just defy the gravity most of the time with absolutely no protection equipment.

We assisted to the PRO jam sessions on Friday evening, pure vert skateboarding, probably the most exciting part of the tournament. A great selection of classics from the Tony Hawk period, having more than 30 years of actively skateboarding and young guns, the leads of the new generation, culminating with Curren Caples, at the age of only 15. What is the vert skateboarding? Its a type of skateboarding involving a vertical ramp (a bit bigger than a halfpipe), were skateboarders can perform various grab or lip tricks that cannot be done in other skateboarding environments.

Always wearing a helmet and protection for knees and elbows, the veterans Chris Miller and Nicky Guerrero are impressive by their clean style. Chris is a 43 old skateboarder from California. He started skateboarding in 1979, became pro in the mids of 1980 at the age of 18. Since then, he is a constant performer in vertical skateboarding while running his own company, Planet Earth. Nicky Guerrero, the first ever Danish pro skateboarder, having the same age as Chris started to do serious skateboarding in Denmark at Herlev Skating Club. At his very top of his career, he was training the winters in US and competing the summer in Europe. His very cautios style made him getting only few injuries during his career, however he is very spectacular and always an inspiration for the young Danish skateboarders.

The young magicians of the ramp were showing a slightly different outfit. Large pants and t-shirts, hats having the brand of their sponsors, they showed a lot of energy and desire to make it spectaculars for the audience. Pedro Barros from Brasil, although only 16, was really impressiveby his amazing speed. He started skating at 2 and is now one of the big names coming in the game, by winning many contests in the recent years. Daniel Cardone, from Bologna, is one of the really competitive europeans skateboarders, in a world dominated by Americans. His style is always : Danger, he takes all the risks and even if he preffers more to party rather than training, he still gets his share of winning competitions.

The winner of the day, Raven Tershy, from California, although even an amateur, managed to perform really well against all those PROs, impressing the danish crowd and showing that he is really on fire. Overal it was fun. No accident, a bit of rain, waves of alchohol, many happy people enjoying a quality show. And some of the best skateboarders in the world.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Life of a bicycle


It all starts when I was small. I colourful bicycle for a small kid, waiting inpatient in the inner yard for my user to come and take me for a ride. I am full of scratches and mud as my small owner does not really care too much. But I like it.
The years are passing and my owner is now a tall and stong guy who likes riding me on his way to work. I still spend the night in the inner yard, but the day is the subject of gossips in the station parking. Its a lot more fun.

Now I have a kid! I am soooo happy! I am doing my best to protect my small piece of metal. And now I just need to find a small kid to play with my baby.
I just heard about cryogenic conservation. Its such a cool idea. I can sit and wait to the future, when people will be smart enough to use only bikes!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Special guest: Reta

Take Me To The Clouds Above...
We invited today Reta DeLarge, coming from the same location as our previous guest: Perth Ontario, Canada , a place with people with a real sense for art. What we want to share with you from her wonderful photostream is a nice selection of digital art work, created purely with softwares like Bryce. She is incredibely talented in making those surreal scenes and landscape or other compositions that all look so beautiful. Even if a bit non conventional in the world of photography, the digital art of Reta is a true expression of her sensibility and love for beauty. Lets color our dreams together with Reta!

Color My World...Our Planets...

Somewhere Out There...My Time With Bryce...

My Stairway To Heaven...Digi-Energy...

Life In Fantasy Land...

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Tivoli


Tivoli is a very nice amusement park in Copenhagen, located near the Central Station , in the heart of Danish capital. It ranks high in the top of the oldest amusement parks (the second after Dyrehavsbakken in Klampenborg) or the most visited (first in Scandinavia and 3rd in Europe).

Tivoli was built in 1843 by Georg Carstensen who persuaded the king Christian VIII that having an amusement park would make people less focused on politics. The area designated for the construction was at that time outside the city, accesible through Vesterport (West Gate). The park was containing oriental style buildings, restaurants, flower gardens and of course, various rides like scenic railways and a merry-go-round. Fireworks shows were put in place, producing very nice reflections in the lake located in the park.

In the current days, Tivoli hosts some famous rides like Rutsjebanen (the wooden roller coaster), that is almost 100 years old, one of the few of its type that still operates and an American Coaster Enthusiasts Classic. Another roller coaster, a modern one, Dæmonen (The Demon) is famous for its inverted loop and zero-gravity roll. The world's tallest carousel, Himmelskibet was first used in 2006. A new thrill called Vertigo was opened 2 years ago and is an attraction where the rider is the pilot of a plane, controlling it in a flight simultator like ride.

Tivoli serves as a venue for different shows and concerts, having a large Concert Hall and a pantomime theatre. The Eurovision Song Contest in 1964 was brodcasted from here. Every year, Tivoli features various themes like Halloween and Christmas when everything is decorated using specific objects and colors.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Gibraltar, the modern Troy

Gibraltar - Africa in the fog

Gibraltar has been, during the history, an important strategic point for controlling the entry and exit from the Mediterranean Sea. One after another, the Phoenicians, Arabs, Spanish or British took control and used the advantages given by "The Rock" in their eternal fights for the supremacy of the area.

Gibraltar - boats

Many thousands years ago, the peninsula was surrounded by fertile plains instead of water. The Neanderthals were using the caves around the rock as their home, different fossils of them being found in Gorham's Cave or Forbes' Quarry. Around 950 BCE the Phoenicians settled some shrines and altars, making offerings to their gods. The Greeks were venerating the rock, considering it created by Hercules during his Tenth Labour to join the Atlantic and the Mediterranean. Some temples dedicated to the demigod existed in Gibraltar, the travellers making sacrifices for a safe passage through the dangerous waters. The rock was considered mostly a sacred place, so the closest located settlement was established on the place of the modern Spanish town of San Roque (Carteia was called in antiquity being initially Phoencian and evolving later into a Chartaginan city).

Gibraltar - La Linea de la Conception

In 710 a Berber army lead by Tariq ibn Ziyad crossed from Africa to Europe, landed in the proximity of Gibraltar and started their campaign of conquering the most part of Iberian peninsula. The Almohad Sultan Abd al-Mu'min fortified Gibraltar first time in 1160 feeling the danger of Reconquista lead by the Christian kings of Aragon and Castile. In 1309, Ferdinand IV of Castile and James II of Aragon besieged and finally conquered Gibraltar (that was counting about 1200 citizens at that time) and repopulated it with Christians. A lot of naval wars and attacks had Gibraltar as target in 17th century, involving Dutch, British, Danish and Spanish fleet and very often alliances were just made and broken. In the beginning 18th century, the British took the total control of Gibraltar (in August 1704 the fleet commanded by Admiral Sir George Rooke, conquered it, lost it again in October but managed to hit back in December). In 1713 Gibraltar come officially under British possession after the Treaty of Utrecht and was consolidated and fortified. Spain tried to reconquer it many times during the 18th century, culminating with the fourteenth siege, in 1779, that transformed most of the city into a ruin. The British had to cede West Florida, East Florida and Minorca to Spain in order to keep Gibraltar.

Gibraltar - Africa is a misty goal

The British navy used Gibraltar as a key military base in their following wars, Battle of Trafalgar and Crimean War. In the World War II Spanish dictator Francisco Franco refused to allow the allied German army to cross Spain, vanishing German plans to capture Gibraltar. Franco wishes to control again Gibraltar so he imposed travel and communication restrictions between Spain and Gibraltar. The border was completely closed in 1969 being fully reopened in 1985. The inhabitants had their chance to express their opinion about the control of Gibraltar by either Great Britain or Spain, but they opted for UK in both 1967 and 2002. Today, Gibraltar is considered a British overseas territory, its inhabitants having the British citizenship with all the rights that resides from this.

Gibraltar - The old continent

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

End of fun - Copenhagen Carnival

Copenhagen Carnival

The carnival is over, letting behind a lot of memories, images but also a lot of garbage. Thousands of people participating to different events, concerts and shows, parades and workshops. We enjoyed mostly the parades as they are more photogenic due to colourful outfits. The last day ended up as well with a parade, this time in Fælledparken. The dancers were more relaxed, they posed for the photographers sharing smiles and samba moves, the costumes were lacking some feathers or sparkles. But overall it was the feeling of doing something funny, of bringing the joy in everybodies hearts. We promised ourselves to be there next year again.

Copenhagen Carnival

Copenhagen Carnival

Copenhagen Carnival

Copenhagen Carnival

Copenhagen Carnival

Copenhagen Carnival

Copenhagen Carnival

Copenhagen Carnival

Copenhagen Carnival

Sunday, June 12, 2011

When Rio moved to the north - Copenhagen Carnival main parade

Copenhagen Carnival

Lovely sunny weather, very crowded Stroget street in a shopping Saturday noon, music, colors and a lot of fun. This was Copenhagen Carnival 2011 main parade. Over 20 groups from Denmark, Sweden or Germany featuring a lot of native latin american artists together with local enthusiasts performed a great representation of senses, mainly focused on sound and colors. It was notable the initiative to integrate kids with mental or physical handicaps into this event, to give them some support and appreciation. All of these being said, it was a wonderful show, where everybody was in good mood enjoying the music and the dance. You can imagine yourself watching our photo selection bellow:

Copenhagen Carnival

Copenhagen Carnival

Copenhagen Carnival

Copenhagen Carnival

Copenhagen Carnival

Copenhagen Carnival

Copenhagen Carnival

Copenhagen Carnival

Copenhagen Carnival

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Special guest: QuimG

La Ciutat de les Arts (Fisheye world)

Joaquim Granell (QuimG on Flickr) is from Castelló de la Plana and is a freelance photographer. Looking into his photostream, you are amazed by the variety of subjects, techniques and moods that he approaches. Its hard to chose only 5 pictures, but to keep the Spanish post-vacation trend of our blog, we put the spot on some cityscapes and landscapes. When you look on Quim's pictures, the first things you will notice are the amazing vivid colors and the beautiful skies. The pictures transmits the beauty of the place, giving you a subliminal desire to add that location to your vacation wish list.
We let you admire our selection and even more on Quim's blog or his flickr photostream

l'Albufera de València

Port Castelló

L'Oceanogràfic

Santuari de Santa Maria Magdalena

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Special guest: M Fotografie

Donabate Bay

Today's guest is Marius Erasmus(M Fotografie); he is coming from South Africa but lives in Ireland. We found him quite recent in flickr and we were impressed by the way he renders the beauty of Ireland through his photography. No meter it is a cityscape of Dublin or a seascape of the irish shores, if it is day or night, the way he paints the light is very beautiful; the compositions are great and the tones fit very well. We have chosen a selections of photos from his photostream, but you can find more at
M Fotografie

Dublin

North County Seaside

St Patrick's Cathedral

Glass at Connolly