Union Station: Before and After

I don’t usually do serious editing for my photos—my philosophy on editing is to keep it as realistic as possible–but every now and then a photo requires post-processing work to compensate for less-than-ideal weather conditions or hasty shooting. This shot was one of them. The photo isn’t terrible, but the backlighting makes the exposure imbalanced. If I’d…

for lease

Nighttime

Shooting at nighttime is such a different experience than shooting in the day. It definitely requires more patience than in environments than more light. My favorite thing about low light photography is the colors that emerge: blues, oranges, a wider range of greys. Everything looks different at night–more romantic, more mysterious, or, in the case…

Cats and La Catedral: Toledo, Spain

I’m a cat person. I’m now getting over vestiges of my childhood fear of dogs, but I’ll always be more comfortable around cats. Except for a two month stint between the death of our beloved Blackie and the adoption of playful Naomi, I’ve had cats continuously since I was four years old. The last place…

Function + Beauty = Casa Batlló

The Sagrada Familia is Antoni Gaudí’s most famous work of architecture, but it definitely isn’t his only design that attracts tourists to Barcelona. Casa Batlló is sometimes called the “House of Bones” because of its facade, which has skeletal pillars and balconies. The green and blue tiles that cover the facade also give it an…

Sagrada Familia

Barcelona’s most well-known church is the Sagrada Familia, designed by world-famous architect Antoni Gaudí. It’s still unfinished, but that doesn’t prevent it from being enormous or impressive. The facade is extraordinarily intricate; it depicts religious scenes on both the front and the back of the building with detailed carvings that fill in the space on all sides. With…

Split-Second Alhambra

History is all about stories: successes and failures, heroes and villains, happiness and tragedy. Traveling is the best way to see how history affects present-day stories. These photos are from La Alhambra in Granada, Spain. It is considered one of the most significant examples of Islamic architecture in Spain and has inspired various works of music and literature. Yet instead…

The U.S. Doesn’t Have These

What does Europe have that the United States doesn’t? Bidets, Magnum ice cream bars, and towns like Óbidos, Portugal. I’m not sure whether there’s less tourism to the U.S. or whether it’s just different tourism. Our big cities are much more spread out, plus our shorter history yields fewer noteworthy sites for tourists to visit. In Europe, small towns thrive…

Convent of Christ

Tomar, Portugal We left Évora (which, by the way, is lovely) and drove north about 2 1/2 hours to Tomar for a day trip to see the Convent of Christ. The monastery was built in the 12th century by the Knights Templar. Its enticing architecture is, like many sites in Portugal, a combination of styles: Gothic, Renaissance, Roman,…