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Blogs from: Russia
Photo of the Day – The Colorful Cathedral – St Basils – Moscow, RussiaSt. Basils Cathedral is one of the most iconic Cathedrals in the World. In fact, I would go so far as to say that it is one of the most iconic buildings in the World, period.
What makes the Cathedral eye-catching and iconic are its 9 unique and colorful onion domes. These domes represent the 9 chapels within the Cathedral itself. While the exterior is unique and colorfully chaotic, the interior was a bit dull in my eyes. Perhaps it was seeing the outside and then going inside, but how many of you have ever seen a photo of the interior of St. Basils? Now, don’t get me wrong, the interior is interesting in its own way. I find most things that are over 400 years old somewhat fascinating, but it pales in comparison to the exterior.
Photo of the Day – Sharp Onion Domes – Saint Basil’s Cathedral – Moscow, RussiaSaint Basil’s Cathedral is one of the few buildings on the planet that can sit dead smack in the middle of a crowded parking lot and still make a list of the top places to visit in the world. It’s for good reason indeed. When you cut through all of the noisy surroundings and focus on the cathedral, the beautifully ornate and colorful onion domes light up your insides and transform your mind into a cool state of tranquility.
Photo of the Day – Candy Land Castle – Church of Spilt Blood, St. Petersburg, RussiaEvery time I look at this picture I immediately think of Candy Land! You know, the kids game with all of the different types of candy as the “players”. I played this game a lot and to me the Church of Spilled Blood makes me think of a giant real-life castle made out of candy.
The intricate painting of the domes and walls lend itself to M&M’s, Laffy Taffy, Hershey Kisses, Candy Canes and an assortment of other candy that makes my mouth water right now! Or perhaps I have lost it
What do you see?
Photo of the Day – Scandinavian Golden Hour – St. Petersburg, RussiaThe best photos are always taken during the golden hours – the hour before and the hour after sunrise and the hour before and after sunset. One special thing about visiting very northern parts of the world during the middle of summer is the days are very stretched out. If you go to the right place at the right time you can even experience days where it never gets dark!
These long days in effect stretch out sunrise and sunset, which means the windows of the day for great photography are greatly extended. This allowed Will and I to walk around St. Petersburg one day last June for several hours photographing the beautiful sunset light. We were able to grab this photo of the English Embarkment sitting on the Neva River, just out front of the famous Hermitage Museum.
Photo of the Day – Blinded by the Light – Hermitage Museum – St. Petersburg, RussiaI’m not a big museum guy. There, I said it. The majority of the museums I have visited around the world have failed to really excite me. Too often museums are all about finding a few very famous pieces, that frankly if the museum brochure didn’t highlight the fact that the pieces were famous, you would find nothing extraordinary about them vs. the twenty other beautiful paintings in the room. I know this all sounds very unsophisticated, but I bet this is how nine out of ten people actually feel.
The Hermitage is different. It is more of a palace than an actual museum – although that comment is really unfair because it contains a great deal of absolutely stunning artwork. A visit to the Hermitage consists of walking around a massive palace for hours making your way from room to room in total amazement of what surrounds you. This photo is an example of one of the very “normal” rooms that we walked through on our visit earlier this year.
Photo of the Day – Mystery Photo – Stairway to HeavenThe previous three Mystery Photos (here, here and here) have all been guessed correctly by the same person (Mike Rubenstein) within several hours of us posting the photos on AbsoluteVisit. This week we are going to kick the difficulty up a couple of notches. Not only will the photo be much more challenging, but going forward we are only going to accept one guess per person and no incremental clues will be given by us in the comments. We will announce the correct answer and the winner the following day. Good luck!
Where was this photo taken?
Photo of the Day – Early Morning Shopping in Red Square – Moscow, RussiaAfter pulling an all-nighter in Moscow, we decided to get out on to Red Square for some clear shots of St. Basils and Red Square. During this shoot, I saw this shot which was taken looking opposite from St. Basils Cathedral. Some times there are some amazing scenes right behind you (look around!).
This photo feels very much like an early weekend morning (in this case a Sunday) with only a few people out and the sun trying its hardest to rise above even the lowest of buildings. The shimmer and glisten of the water on the streets would usually tell you that it rained the previous night – but in this case, the water is from Moscow’s street cleaners.
So, why on earth did I title this “Early Morning Shopping in Red Square”? Well, the building on the far-left is the Glavnyi Universalnyi Magazin or GUM (pronounced ‘goom’). It means “Main Universal Store” and is a high-end shopping mall that acts as one of the borders to Red Square. Although we did not go inside, its facade is beautiful.
Photo of the Day – Golden Kremlin Domes – The Kremlin, Moscow, RussiaInside the Kremlin Walls there are 3 different Cathedrals – Cathedral of the Dormition (1479), Cathedral of the Annunciation (1489), and Cathedral of the Archangel Michael (1508). Specifically what you are looking at are domes from the Cathedral of Dormition.
I suppose what I really like about these domes is that they are unique and of course beautiful to look at. Other than in Russia, I have never seen this architectural style.
Where else does this architecture exist?
Photo of the Day – Domed Ceiling of The Hermitage Museum – Saint Petersburg, RussiaWhere do I begin?
First of all, realize this is a ceiling.
Secondly, understand that the ceiling was designed and painted in the 18th Century.
Lastly, this ceiling is located in The Hermitage Museum which was the Summer Palace for Russia’s Royalty.
I am not sure if that is helping to give you a better understanding of this photo, but just look at it, enjoy it, and get lost in it!
Photo of the Day – Pickled Foods Galore – Kuznechny Market – St Petersburg, RussiaOut of a necessity to store food during the cold Russian winters, Russians pickle a wide variety of foods to greatly increase their shelf life. On a visit to Russia you will find something pickled on the table at every traditional Russian restaurant, especially if you put in an order for vodka!
I posted a photo a few weeks back of some delicious food we picked up at the central market in St Petersburg. On the plate there were lots of pickled items which were all purchased from this nice (although not so friendly looking here) lady in the market.