Antwerp, Belgium – Photographs

Golden

 

I am discovering new and fascinating things about the evolution, of both my travel philosophy and my photography… While I still believe that visiting the “iconic” landmarks is important..

Antwerp Palace Square

 

I am finding myself wandering through the lesser known avenues of a city more and more..  Sure, I still make time to see the well known touristy locations.. I mean, can you really go to Antwerp and NOT see the Cathedral of our Lady?

Cathedral-Up

 

Cathedral of Our Lady 1

 

or the Medieval Fort, Het Steen, along the river?

Het Steen 2

 

 

But, let’s be honest here, I travel for a couple of reasons.. exploration of new places and cultures AND taking photos that can be sold as prints for my fine art gallery, travel and blog articles and expanding my portfolio 

Golden De Wilde Zee

Ok, so I am doing a bit of self-promotion..there is nothing wrong with that..I mean, after all, who else is going to promote my work..

Anyway..back to Antwerp.. We originally started this trip in Amsterdam. The trip by rail to Antwerp varies depending on which train system you use.. Thalys is the high speed international train and runs direct from Schipol to Antwerp in about an hour and 15 minutes..

The Intercity train leaves every hour, is only a slightly longer ride (2 hrs) and is less expensive. This is the train we took.. These tickets can be bought at the Central Train Station in Amsterdam or the station at Schipol Airport.. Be aware that there is a connection in Rotterdam for this choice..

_DSC7284

 

Trust me.. the train is a lot better than it looks from the outside. It is clean inside, the seats are wide and comfortable and have a fold down tray..

Either way, you arrive in Antwerp and the Central Train Station.. seems to be a theme in Europe.. the main train station is almost called “Central” …

_DSC6917 _DSC7261 _DSC7275

 

This is a big, beautiful, and sprawling train station… and you can easily spend an hour here just taking photos.. so grab a 2 Euro Belgian waffle and explore a bit.. It’s well worth it.

It is a long leisurely walk from here to the center.. but you will pass through the diamond district, parks.. see churches and galleries…shopping galore..on your way. Exploration is a good thing..

Antwerp - Face Antwerp-Old & New

 

The center square is where you will find the Cathedral of our Lady.. numerous restaurants, and chocolate shops.. Belgian row houses, statues and monuments

3 Points Antwerp-Center 1

Antwerp - Center Shops

 

 

But my favorite places are the back streets.. narrow, cobblestoned and virtually deserted..which is a shame.  There are myriads of quaint little shops featuring hand made items, food and beer… Not too mention, almost no people.  These are where my favorite photos come from.. daytime, black and white..

Bikes along the Wall

 

or in color

_DSC7252 _DSC7254 Te Koop

 

Hidden gems and colorful graffiti around every corner..

Nightime shots, crafted in black and white, and my weird digitally manipulated art are my absolute dream photos..

Walking Bridge Cafe with History Six Lamps De Wilde Zee

 

Sometimes, as above, they are added to the sales gallery… some are sellable but more just for fun.. 🙂

Fun Fries

 

Antwerp, Belgium.. a great city to explore..a beautiful city to photograph..

HAPPY TRAVELS!!

 

Traveling as a Lifestyle

I never realized how much fun traveling can be.. exciting… mind-bending.. enlightening..

Valley(Pr)

I worked for almost 30 years as an electrician in the USA, mostly in Colorado, but all over really..  I did what most employed people in the States do.. I worked for a whole year waiting to accrue that coveted week-long (sometimes 2) reprieve and get out and go somewhere on vacation. These trips could be as far as the Caribbean, Mexico, Canada or as close as the next city.  Anything and anywhere as long as I was not at work..

Then an amazing thing happened..  I decided to broaden my horizons.. I decided to take a chance. I decided to explore.  Damn the economy..full speed ahead..

Adjoined

I applied for and was hired by a contract company doing maintenance work overseas..at US Embassies, of all places, with a 2 year contract that could be extended up to 2 more years before you have to move to another post.. Currently, I am in Kyiv, Ukraine and having the time of my life..

Andrew's Descent

Andrew’s Descent

It is an easy city to fly in and out of from Boryspil International airport and, for the past 3 1/2 years, cities in Europe (with the occasional trip to Turkey or the UAE) have been calling me almost monthly..

Sophia Hagia-Istanbul (1)

Water Wheel - Prague

There are 196 countries in the world…unless of course you don’t include Tawain.. some countries do and some don’t..so let’s just include for grins..  That’s 196.. at one vacation a year to a new country..well, do the math..That’s right – 196 years to see them all..

As a US citizen and passport holder, I can visit 174 of them either without a visa or a visa upon arrival. It’s actually a little more complicated than that and over time, I will try to explain all the differences..

But for now.. just think..174 countries..  Right now, I am averaging a new country/city a month.. short trips of 3 – 5 days every month..  That’s still 14 years to see all of them.

Parliment Building in Budapest, Hungary from the south side of the river.

Parliament Building in Budapest, Hungary from the south side of the river.

14 years! 

Handlebars BW Red Leaves at Lake

 

Of course, living in Ukraine is a treat as well..and exploring this wonderful and beautiful country is an experience unto itself.. If no “out of country experience” presents itself, I spend weekends strolling through Kyiv or one of the myriad of historic sites in the vicinity.. Babi Yar is here.. Bykivnia Gravesites.. some of the oldest churches in Europe are here..

DSC_8806 Lavra Spring

St. Sophia's

St. Sophia’s

St. Michael's Golden Domed Monastery and Mykhailivska Square

St. Michael’s Golden Domed Monastery and Mykhailivska Square

Lavra

 

My world view has changed… my prejudices are disappearing… Maybe eventually those will be gone completely.

For now.. Rome awaits (2nd time to Rome)…this time with a side trip to Florence and Pisa.. My photography skills have improved so maybe this time the photos will do it justice..

Happy Travels!!

PHOTOGRAPHY AS ART

 

 

My Favorite Doors – Amsterdam, Netherlands

Time again for my favorite doors…different city of course, but same general theme

Turnzall

This red door and brick wall combination might be my favorite of all time.. but there was quite the variety in Amsterdam..

Wonderful Red De Brakke Grond Brick 6

Some of these were good enough to make it to the Fine Art America website…where you can find copies of your favorites too..Just in time for the holiday season..

Red Letter and Bike Painting 3 B's

Classical, metal, wooden and covered with graffiti and stickers..  Variety abounds

29 Narrow Blue Big City Bad Boys 1 Red Light Stickers in Arch

 

Happy Travels!!

Photography as Art

Favorite Doors – Riga, Latvia

It is impossible for me to visit anywhere without shooting some doors..and, besides Tallinn, Estonia, Riga had had some of the most diverse I have seen..

Flower Pots

From old and faded with age…

Mail Slot in Gold 2 Chairs

 

to stunning…

To the Point

 

Blackheads

Wonderful shapes and colors….

Green Diamonds Bullet to Empty Square

Impressive stone and wood work..

AM 1900 DP E 3.7

Plants and Ivy

2 Potted Plants

Almost All Ivy

Ivy Gate Matching Flowers

and, needless to say,  graffiti and posters ..

Cartoon 33 Joobnud F##K the System F##K the Police

I was in heaven… and while not technically a door..next shot is just cool.. and door related  🙂

41 to 56

and finally..

Coat

What’s around the next corner?  Up the next street?  Something interesting, I bet …

Stay Tuned and Happy Travels!!

Photography as Art                  Travel with Steve

 

 

 

Side Streets – Riga

Narrow Cobblestone Street

I love to walk the cobblestone side streets and back alleys… especially in the early morning when no one is out..or at least, very few people.. There always seems to be the straggling partier from the night before..

The streets are quiet..almost lonely

Galerija Daug

 

I meander aimlessly through the narrow lanes…

 

Cars Not Allowed

 

It’s a great time to shoot doors and windows..

Old Wood and Cobblestone

 

4 Sets of Shutters

or wander into hidden courtyards that are often dead-ends..

Dead End BW

 

Narrow Courtyard

Always something pretty.. always something interesting ..

Bike

sometimes classic..sometimes funny..

Moustache

 

But always something new.. around the corner.. up the next street..

Fashion Street PBW Netted Grated Windows

 

 

Later this week, we will take a look at some of the landmarks and churches.. stay tuned

and always ……… HAPPY TRAVELS!!

Photography as Art                          Travel with Steve

Selection of Black and White

You know.. sometimes just like the “weird” photos I shoot, I like to experiment with different formats … lately I have been trying to improve my B&W shots.. I think alleys at night are good for this…

Antique Alley

 

Passage

Parking lots.. especially cobblestone..

Church with Cobblestone

Abandoned, run down…dilapidated..

Escape Bricks Bars and Stairs

 

I prefer individual people, if any people at all, something with context or a story that catches my eye…

Solo in the Rain2

 

Always trying to improve…  Riga, Latvia in 2 weeks should give me some more excellent opportunities.. I’ll keep you all posted..

Photography as Art                 Travel with Steve               Fine Art Prints

 

Happy Travels!!

Weird Stuff

Sometimes I just like to take photos of weird stuff…anything and everything that catches my eye..  as long as I find it interesting, it is fair game to be caught in my lens..

Alley Up WM Mailbox WM Manhole WM Rusted Gate WM Wall Lamps WM

 

Sometimes it’s just good for training your eye and practicing your composition, to just randomly shoot things with no plan.

Empty Ashtray WM Mail Boxes WM Lights in Arch WM Gelateria WM

 

Other times..It’s just fun..

Staircase WM Gated WM Corks WM

Spaghetti WM

 

Have a great day!  and Happy Travels!!

 

Catedrala Sfantul loan Botezatorul – Ploeisti

Standing at the round-about formed by the intersections of Bulevardul Republicii ,Strada Carpati, and Strada Vasile Lupu is The “Catedrala Sfantul loan Botezatorul” dedicated to St. John “The Baptist”.

DSC_2372WM

Although it was built recently, between the years 1923 and 1937, it is an impressive building with a central tower that reaches 60 meters in height.

DSC_2377WM

It is easily reached, being in the center of town, by walking along any of the wide pedestrian paths, by bus or tram..

Travel with Steve                      Photography as Art    

HAPPY TRAVELS!!

Shot(s) for the Day – Windows

Windows are the eyes to a buildings soul.. endless variety .. endless adornments

Contrast in French - Marseille

Contrast in French – Marseille

My 2nd favorite subject to shoot for pleasure..

Produce - Ivano-Frankovsk

Produce – Ivano-Frankovsk

Flowers on the Ledge

Flowers on the Ledge

Watching the world go by… time passing

TriColor

TriColor

Keep exploring … keep shooting… there is always something amazing

Travel with Steve                               Photography as Art
                     Fine Art @ Fine Art America

Happy Travels!

 

Shot(s) for the Day – Doors Revisted

A few more of my favorite subject… I look for unique colors, weathering.. textures.. It seems like older buildings and structures often have the best doors to shoot.. Or maybe that’s just me..:)

Weathered Stain in Old Rock

 

Abandoned Pair

 

11 Maroon

9 with Plants

I usually fill up an entire memory card with doors… and windows..

2nd Hand Store

An endless variety … endless form ..

Old White-Corrugated Tin

 

It makes you wonder..what goes on behind those doors..what is the life led.. what are the memories..the hopes.. the dreams

 

Travel with Steve                              Photography as Art

Happy Travels!!