Saturday, 19 May 2007

Postcards from Amsterdam - Part 2

World Press Photo Awards 2007 Photographs from the The World Press Photo Awards 2007 were on display in the Oude Kerk. I wandered over and enjoyed a double treat: firstly, the shots that made up the awards display were humbling; secondly, so was the kerk (church). The first thing I saw as I entered the church, was of course, a blond! They certainly have a way of standing out in a crowd!

The kerk was built in 1306 and it is big: 3,300 sq. m. I don't think it gets much use as a church now days, as people were saying mostly exhibits are held there now. It certainly has an old, old church feel. There are no pews to speak of, just stone tombstones that cover some 2,500 people buried there.

I said earlier that the windows in the Nieuwe Kerk were more colourful, but I think I got that wrong. These were just as colourful and have as many blues as the new kerk.

As in many of these old churches, there is a lot of intricate detail

What really struck me was that afterwards when I was editing the photo, I noticed that the histogram was almost perfectly Gaussian! Now that's spooky!!

The ceiling was wooden, and I understand fires, destruction, and rebuilding have been major part of the history of this church.

There were lots of nooks and crannies. I didn't figure out what this one was (lighted with an off camera strobe)

I could imagine the night watchman sitting in this chair, whiling away the hours:

All-in-all, it was a great double header: great photos to look at and great architecture to take photos of:

Leaving the kerk to walk back to the hotel, I saw many flower stands and this lovely bunch of tulips.

Another dreary day, the only thing to make of the red light district (which is where the Oude Kerk is located) are reflections in the canals. If you look closely, or click on the photo to go to Flickr and then look at it in a larger size, you can see the raindrops on the water.

The girls in the red light district really do not want their photos taken. Many have "no camera" signs posted outside their windows. While I never did figure out why this is, I did find a little pussy who was willing to pose for me. You can see the "red lights" on the side of the window and also reflecting in the glass as well.

Almost back at the hotel, I noticed the rain had finally stopped, if only for a few minutes, which allowed me to capture another "reflection" shot. This time, it was the buildings across the street from the hotel.

Earlier, when I started out, then sun was coming up and the moon was going down. I think this is the steeple of the Oude Kerk.

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