Monday, April 30, 2007

Blog Recomendation

This is just a quick post to recommend a blog I just found. Oddly enough I knew the blog author well enough, she goes by the name of Mig. Shes a cool girl who helped me better design my blog and gave me plenty of tips to get my site out onto the www. Anyway, like I said the blog is written by Mig, but I just now found it.

So here it is, its called Romania My Love. This is an easy blog to read and in fact saves me a great deal of work. I'll get to why it saves me work in a bit, but first the reason I want to recommend this blog. Its easy to tell just by the title that she is quite passionate about the country. This is reason enough to recommend any blog, be it about Romania or any other beloved subject. The other reason I recommend it is because it is well written. Its great to be passionate about a subject, but it doesn't hurt to express said passion well.

As I said Mig's blog saves me a lot of work, simply because its something I had wanted to incorporate into my blog. I had wanted to focus on Romania and Photography, but more and more wanted to empahsize Romanian culture. In this case I am quite happy I don't have this task, as I'm sure I wouldn't have done it as well as Mig. So anyhow if you are interested, have a look at her site, I'm sure you'll enjoy it.

Ciao

PS: Check out her music player in the sidebar to the right. =)

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De Dimineaţâ!














From DUSK to dawn.

It was obvious by now that there are benefits and drawbacks to living in Bucharest. The best part is that you can pretty much walk to get anything. In the mood for a really small but insanely strong coffee? No problem, there are coffee shops practically everywhere. Even Starbucks would be impressed. Food, clothes, electronics and entertainment? Literally across the street, should you have the courage ot actually cross the street =P. So all in all, this is a pretty convenient city for anyone not interested in driving too much.

But there are drawbacks of course, such as.

Getting a decent nights sleep without much noise from the neighbors in Bucharest? Not friggin likely. Its not really the neighbors that are to blame, but rather the insomniac teenagers that stay out till 2 in the morning. Unfortunately I was staying in a neighborhood that is flanked by blocs on all sides. Acoustically this really doesn't help much since all they do is reflect sound perfectly. It makes for quite the auditorium for even the most subtle of conversations. Its so bad you can practically hear a mouse fart. Unfortunately you really cant sleep with the windows closed since blocs tend to absorb heat like nothing else. So the only solution is leaving the windows open and listening to the enlightening conversations of semi awake Romanian teens. =)

Photo Location: Bucharest, Romania
Photo Touchup: None
Exif: Canon EOS 30D, 1/6400s f/5.6 at 81.0mm iso1000

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Alt Adevâr














A poor old man standing in a corner.

Photo Location: Bucharest, Romania
Photo Touchup: Photoshop - Color Balance (+15 Yellow), Contrast +19
Exif: Canon EOS 30D, 1/125s f/22 at 22.0mm iso640

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Palatul C.E.C.














I am almost certain this is the C.E.C. Palace and is probably one of the most interesting buildings in Bucharest. It is not very big, in that it only has two stories and takes up a rather small lot of land. It located near the streets of "Mihai Voda" and "Stavropoleos". Yup, Stavropoleos is really hard to pronounce.

Certainly from the outside it has its merit as being very artistic and complex in design. But to really see this buildings beauty you have to step inside. And while I don't have any photos of the interior, as I was not allowed, you can be certain that its truly breathtaking. I must have spent half an hour just looking at all the detail in main lobby.

This building is physically located quite close to THIS other building and oddly enough, the two photos look pretty similar. Either way, there are a lot of interesting buildings here so the area is really worth visiting.

Photo Location: Bucharest, Romania
Photo Touchup: None
Exif: Canon EOS 30D, 1/800s f/5 at 17.0mm iso640

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Sunday, April 29, 2007

Modern şi Albastru




















A modern building with a blue façade on a cold and overcast day. I'm actually starting to really like the modern architecture in Bucharest.

Photo Location: Bucharest, Romania
Photo Touchup: Photoshop - Brightness -20, Contrast +15
Exif: Canon EOS 30D, 1/125s f/22 at 17.0mm iso640

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Lîngă Strada Mihai Voda














A very interesting composition showing a modern building flanked by two buildings of older architecture.

On a personal note, I would advise any tourist photographer to follow at least these two rules.
  • Rule One: Always photograph the signs, otherwise you may not remember what the photo was of when you get back home. For example, the photo shown above. I have no clue what these buildings are, thus the translated name "Near The Street Mihai Voda" =P
  • Rule Two: Beware of rain. =)
Photo Location: Bucharest, Romania
Photo Touchup: None
Exif: Canon EOS 30D, 1/640s f/5 at 17.0mm iso640

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Bisericâ Ascunsâ




















The title of this post translates to Hidden Church, which is actually very appropriate considering that this church was literally down a small alley and between two buildings. I had been walking on the street called "Independenţei" and just happened to look to my right and saw the tip of this church.

Well get this, apparently there is a lot of this in Bucharest. That is, interesting architecture or locales just around the corner. By the third day I decided to just go walking. I had an idea of where I sort of wanted to go, but for the most part I just went exploring. I found a lot of cool places in the city this way.

Photo Location: Bucharest, Romania
Photo Touchup: None
Exif: Canon EOS 30D, 1/1250s f/5 at 30.0mm iso640

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Saturday, April 28, 2007

Palatul Justiţiei














A very large and very attractive building by the rivers edge very close to "Piaţa Unirii".

Photo taken on a cold, cloudy and damp day. Not much in the way of rain, but more like a light sprinkle with a promise of a downpour at any moment. Makes for some seriously colorless photography. So rather than fight the facts, I decided to completely desaturate this picture and add a faint blue filter, faded in from top to bottom. I think it gives it a nice cool, cloudy and damp effect. =) All keeping with the theme of the morning really.

Photo Location: Bucharest, Romania
Photo Touchup: Photoshop - Desaturate, Brightness -20, Contrast +15, Blue Filter
Exif: Canon EOS 30D, 1/1250s f/5 at 17.0mm iso640

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Un Bloc Frumos




















The first thing I really noticed in Bucharest were all the "Bloc" buildings. There are a lot of them, they are everywhere and they seem to all look the same. The odd thing that happened to me is that after a few days I was no longer seeing 'all' the blocs, but started to see the details in each bloc. And here is the really odd thing. Some of these blocs have some pretty nice architectural design to them. I think the reason I didn't see it in the first place is because they are pretty dirty. So really, what this city needs is just a thorough cleaning. I think then the beauty of the architecture can be seen more clearly.

The above picture was a pain to work with. I had to Photoshop it to death. The overcast day did nothing to help of course. =)

Photo Location: Bucharest, Romania
Photo Touchup: Photoshop - Sky (Saturation +25, Gaussian Blur 10.0), Building (Brightness +15, Contast +20, Saturation +20)
Exif: Canon EOS 30D, 1/2000s f/5 at 26.0mm iso640

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Fuarte Cool














The very attractive and charming girl pictured above is one of the most fun people to be around. Now I wont give her name out, but rather call her...umm... Cora. =P

You will be certain of two things when you talk to her. First you will never get bored around her, since she is very charming yet equally intelligent. I say that only because it really is hard to find people that are good to talk to, that can be relaxed and hold a casual conversation or at anytime talk of politics, economics and other such things. The other thing you are certain of when talking to her, is that you will inevitably feel good about yourself. I know this may sound a bit odd, but she has a presence or aura about her that inspires confidence. Talking to her is almost addictive. She smiles at you, encourages you and then you feel like you can do just about anything.

Shes simply awesome. =)

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Mulţumesc, Mulţumesc, Mulţumesc!!!














I would like to say with complete confidence that the best thing about Romania are Romanians. And I say this without doubt and most certainly without difficulty.

I can only tell stories of my experiences in Romania and through them begin to build a picture of Romanians and their culture. I can tell you of a taxi driver who became my guide, a monastery watchman became a historian and others who in one way or another did more than expected. All for no other reason than to be friendly. As Romanians tend to be, they are a very friendly bunch. =)

The two pictured above, who shall remain nameless, but I will call them The Dr. and Shorty (you can figure out who's who), =P are two of the most superb people I have ever met. They treated more like family and cared for me like my own parents would. Shorty =P, made sure that my itinerary was in order, printed it and made 100% sure I was well prepared. She (I guess that gives it away) gifted me train tickets through the entire country, first class on the best trains Romania offers. She kept in touch daily to ensure all is well and even gave me advice on what to see and where. As for The Dr. Well he is a man after my own passons, fond of photography and all things tech. He made sure I had a cell phone, helped transfer the almost 2,500 photos via his lap top and kept in regular contact to make sure all is well.

They are two of the coolest people I've ever met. They are our friends, but they could just as well be family, since they treated my as their own son. I was quite spoiled while in their care, but its something I can definitely get used to. =P

Thank you "Mulţumesc!"

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Friday, April 27, 2007

Lîngă Poşta Vitan




















By the third day of my vacation I was really starting to notice the surrounding architecture. And while I am not generally fond of modern buildings, there are a few in Bucharest I really liked. The first was THIS one. The one pictured here is located practically across the street from the postal office in the Vitan zone, or "Lîngă Poşta Vitan".

I really like this picture, it has a very soft appearance. And while I dont normally like to place the subject square in the middle of the photo, I think in this worked out pretty well.

Photo Location: Bucharest, Romania
Photo Touchup: None
Exif: Canon EOS 30D, 1/2000s f/5 at 17.0mm iso320

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Bună dimineaţa!














One of the best things in the world is waking up in the morning and not having anything to worry about. Not having to get ready for work, not having to bother with schedules, chores, errands. Nothing!

My biggest concern this morning was whether I should have "clătite", "gogoşi" or "cozonac" for breakfast. The perfect morning really.

Photo Location: Bucharest, Romania
Photo Touchup: None
Exif: Canon EOS 30D, 1/1000s f/5 at 17.0mm iso500

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Thursday, April 26, 2007

La Zona Vitan

A photo taken In Bucharest, Romania


















This picture was taken just a few moments after the one posted below.

Bucharest is a really a really funny city. You can spend all day finding things to dislike about it, such as all the run down buildings or the poor condition of the roads. Yet every once in a while this city manages to surprise with a beautiful sunset like this one. I suppose that's Bucharest, a city of high contrast. A place where its practically impossible to completely love it or completely hate it. So no matter how much you may want to hate it, you will inevitably find things to love about it.

Of course I can tell you right now, no matter how much I want to love it, I still cant get over crappy roads. =P

Photo Location: Bucharest, Romania
Photo Touchup: None
Exif: Canon EOS 30D, 1/1000s f/5 at 26.0mm iso400

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O Seară In Roz

A photo taken In Bucharest, Romania












A beautiful dusk in Bucharest.

Photo Location: Bucharest, Romania
Photo Touchup: None
Exif: Canon EOS 30D, 1/1000s f/5 at 26.0mm iso400

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Small Apology

This blog seems to be getting a bit overweight as a result of all the under-optimized graphics and the rather hefty three galleries located in the sidebar. The result is unfortunately slow load times even for people with decent high-speed connections. I will try and put the blog on a diet as soon as possible, but in the mean time, sorry for the slow loading.

Ciao

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Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Către Casă

A photo taken In Bucharest, Romania


















I took this photo while walking (more like hobbling) back home from my first day in Bucharest.

Warning, the rest of what you are about to read is slightly graphic. So of course I'll try and be as descriptive as possible. =P

Let me first start by saying Bucharest is a very walkable city. While it is very very very populated, only 16km (or about 12 miles) span the length of this city. So anyone with some endurance can just as well manage a brisk walk or in my case a day long marathon. If you do visit Bucharest I strongly recommend you get out and see it. Walk as much as possible to as many places as possible. But, and this is where the graphic part starts, get some decent shoes and cut your toe nails. So the story goes like this. I had just bought a pair of Pumas. So, good pair of shoes? Check! Now I was ready to set off on my Tour De Bucharest (just doesn't sound as good as Tour De France). Hmmm...it almost seems like I've forgotten something. Ehh, cant be anything important.

So off I was and some 4 hour into my meandering about the city I start to get some serious pain in my right foot. At first I thought I was just sore or was possibly developing a cramp. No worries, I am sure it will be fine. More walking and more pain. Well by the time I manage to get home and capture this photo on the way I am hobbling like person who's been shot in the foot. Ha! Funny thing is that its not too far from the truth. What had happened is my fancy new shoes had bunched my toes up. No problem there, except that one toe nail had dug into the adjacent toe. So about 5 hours of walking and a bunch of pain later, I had a partially bloody foot. All because I hadn't bothered to take care of my feet. Sadly I have no pictures as proof. How ironic.

So, to recap. Get good shoes and take care of your feet. Now off you go! =)

Photo Location: Bucharest, Romania
Photo Touchup: None
Exif: Canon EOS 30D, 1/1000s f/5 at 26.0mm iso200

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In Roşu La Palat

A photo taken In Bucharest, Romania












A little old lady waiting just outside "Palatul Parlamentului". I really like this picture, unfortunately because of the crop, the resolution is close to native, so some detail is lost.

Photo Location: Bucharest, Romania
Photo Touchup: Considerable Crop, Desaturate (except lady), Lighting Effect: Spotlight, Brightness -15, Contrast +15
Exif: Canon EOS 30D, 1/2000s f/5 at 35.0mm iso200

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Palatul Parlamentului

A photo taken In Bucharest, Romania









Wow, was this picture difficult to work with. I suppose thats fitting considering what this building represents.

The brief history of this rather large building (third largest in the world) is that it was constructed by the communists just prior to the revolution in 1989 as a show piece. The story goes like this. Back around 1984 Nicolae Ceauşescu's, the then communist dictator decided he needed a palace befitting his swollen ego. So what does he do? He tears down a whole city block known as Uranus and begins to build. Apparently the block that he destroyed was quite nice and had several old and beautiful villas. Though I don't suppose that crossed their mind when they were doing the building. From what I've been told a great deal of people lost their lives during the construction, which must have cost an immeasurable amount of money. And finally to add insult to injury, the decided to call it "Casa Poporului" or The House of the People. Their reasoning is that it was built exclusively with material from all over Romania and thus everyone in the country contributed. Though I doubt Ceauşescu invited the people to "their house" to thank them.

So now it is known as "Palatul Parlamentului", or Palace of the Parliament. Its worth seeing for historical value, but otherwise its a testament to malevolence and loss.

Photo Location: Bucharest, Romania
Photo Touchup: High Pass Filter, Brightness -20, Contrast +15, Color Gradient Black (Top to Bottom)
Exif: Canon EOS 30D, 1/3200s f/5 at 20.0mm iso500

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Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Soare In Bucuresti

A photo taken In Bucharest, Romania


















I've told people that the sun does come out in Bucharest, but none believed me. To that I say "Voila!"

I should add that I apparently cannot spell the word 'sun' in Romanian. Its pronounced "Sua-re" but written "Soare". Not a big deal unless Romanians are reading your blog.

Sorry! =)

Photo Location: Bucharest, Romania
Photo Touchup: None
Exif: Canon EOS 30D, 1/1250s f/5 at 17.0mm iso100

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La Unirii Si Libertatii

A photo taken In Bucharest, Romania












While using a Digital SLR (Single Lens Reflex) camera I ran into what has to be the stupidest problem a photographer can have. My pictures at times are slightly tilted to the right. That is the left side of the picture is higher than the right as a result of not holding the camera correctly. What I then have to do is go into Photoshop and Rotate Canvas between 0.5 to 1.0 degrees counter clockwise. This is all the more apparent on any photo that has a distinct horizon, like the photo above.

So why does this happen? Well this being my first DSLR, I was not used to the sheer size of the camera. Also, most DSLR's do not show a live view of the photo you are about to take on the LCD monitor affixed to the back. This is actually a good thing, since it's better to look through the eyepiece. Plus its a more traditional way of taking photos and I would still use it even if there was an LCD view option. The problem comes up when I am using the eye piece. It is set pretty flush with the back of the camera, so as a result you have to tilt your head ever so slightly to see clearly through it. Well rather than make all the effort of tilting my head, I've been accidentally tilting the camera.

Oops!

Photo Location: Bucharest, Romania
Photo Touchup: Brightness -15, Contrast +15, Lighting Effect: Omnilight, Canvas Rotate 0.7 CCW
Exif: Canon EOS 30D, 1/2000s f/5 at 20.0mm iso500

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Monday, April 23, 2007

Către Palat

A photo taken In Bucharest, Romania












A picture worth 100 Ron.

Photo Location: Bucharest, Romania
Photo Touchup: Brightness -15, Contrast +15
Exif: Canon EOS 30D, 1/1000s f/5.6 at 85.0mm iso500

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La Joc

A photo taken In Bucharest, Romania


















I took this photo twice and it didn't come out very good either time. The first was while going towards "Palatul Parlamentului" and the second while returning from a restaurant. This is the second photo. The problem has to do with Romanian weather. If its not overcast its hazy, neither of which help when trying to take a respectable photo.

So I had to do a lot of Photoshop touch up to get it this far. The photo itself came out alright, but I think the most interesting part is the subject matter. For anyone (Romanians) interested/curious, this photo was taken on "Bulevardul Unirii" between the intersections with "Bulevardul Mircea Voda" and "Strada Traian". Anyway, in front of this very broken down building were some kids playing soccer. What caught my eye was just how ugly and beat up this building(s) was. Then I realized that despite that, the kids were having a great time, completely unaware of it.

Photo Location: Bucharest, Romania
Photo Touchup: Too many things too list, anyway its very modified.
Exif: Canon EOS 30D, 1/400s f/5.6 at 72.0mm iso500

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Lînga Trotoar

A photo taken In Bucharest, Romania












Taken while walking towards "Palatul Parlamentului".

Photo Location: Bucharest, Romania
Photo Touchup: None
Exif: Canon EOS 30D, 1/2500s f/5 at 41.0mm iso500

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Sunday, April 22, 2007

Culori In Cer

A photo taken In Bucharest, Romania












This picture was taken on "Bulevardul Uniri" while on my way to "Palatul Parlamentului" or formerly "Casa Poporului". For some reason this picture struck me as being interesting and somewhat relevant to the current political climate in Romania. That is, Romania trying to sort things out and maybe get help from the European Union (EU).

I don't want to turn this into a political blog any more than I want to ignore politics. So, here is my attempt at a quick post.

Romania has some issues to resolve politically. The current president, Traian Basescu and the current prime minister, Calin Popescu Tariceanu, are not getting along too great. The short of it is that Basescu is sort of this to the point guy that has been, well... pointing at all the cracks (communists) in the Romanian political institution. You have to remember this was formerly a communist country with a bunch of really bad people doing some not so good things (bad people do that). Well the revolution came (1989), and a bunch of young people were really excited and life went on. Problem is the communists never really went away. The people involved in the old system, were kicked out of office as they should have been. But really, they mostly just picked up and moved to the office down the hall, gave themselves interesting sounding group names like PSD and then mostly stole money.

But what about this Basescu guy? Well apparently he is trying to do a good thing, and allegedly broke the constitution. Well the constitutional course had to decide if he in fact did break the constitution. Well apparently they said he really didn't break anything, just sort of bumped against it. But anyway, the somewhat dubious parliament didn't see it that way and he was suspended. Is Basescu a good guy? Not really. Basescu is the lesser of two evils as it were. But at least he is better than the rest.

So what about the EU? You can be sure that Romania wont be receiving any help if the politicians don't sort things out (read, get rid of the communists). In the mean time all Romania has are some flags that serve mostly as symbolism of something that may one day be.

Photo Location: Bucharest, Romania
Photo Touchup: Photoshop - Contrast + 15, Brightness -5, Saturation +9 Lighting Effect: Omnilight
Exif: Canon EOS 30D, 1/3200s f/5 at 30.0mm iso250

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Vis-à-Vis

A photo taken In Bucharest, Romania












"Biblioteca Nationala" - See the post below.

Photo Location: Bucharest, Romania
Photo Touchup: Photoshop - Desaturate, Contrast + 15, Brightness +5, Lighting Effect: Spotlight (Contrast +5, Brightness -2), Filter: Grain (Faded Bottom to Top)
Exif: Canon EOS 30D, 1/100s f/22 at 17.0mm iso640

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Modern

A photo taken In Bucharest, Romania












Bucharest is a city of high contrast. This is the "Tribunalul Bucuresti" building located on "Bulevardul Uniri" at the intersection with "Bulevardul Mircea Voda". I am personally not very fond of modern art or architecture, but I can be certain when I say that this is a very pretty building. The strange thing is that it is located literally across the street from what should be a very beautiful old building, the "Biblioteca Nationala". Unfortunately this is where the contrast is most apparent. This other building is very run down and uncared for, where as the building pictured here is virtually immaculate.

Its quite sad actually.

Photo Location: Bucharest, Romania
Photo Touchup: None
Exif: Canon EOS 30D, 1/320s f/5 at 17.0mm iso250

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Saturday, April 21, 2007

La Un Sfat Cu Tataie

A photo taken In Bucharest, Romania












"Stai baiatul lui tataie sa its spun o chestie."

My grandfather requires a lot of patience and measurable stamina. You have to be willing to listen and to do so intently. In a way he is pretty incessant and for the untrained he can even seem a bit exhausting with his tireless advice and suggestions. I suppose the best thing I learned from him is to listen. The second thing I learned is that once I listened I was able to hear some pretty sound advice.

My grandfather is not refined, nor highly educated. He is not particularly well manned nor does he benefit from world cuture and knowledge. He is a good man and I love him very much. And in truth he knows a far simpler life. And for that, he actually has some very good advice for anyone willing to listen. And listen you must, because he loves to talk.

Coffee anyone? =)

Photo Location: Bucharest, Romania
Photo Touchup: Photoshop - Slight crop to move him more to the left of the photo.
Exif: Canon EOS 30D, 1/800s f/5 at 17.0mm iso320

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La O Vorba Cu Mamaie

A photo taken In Bucharest, Romania












I could sit and talk (la o vorba) with my grandmother for hours on end. Its an odd thing really to be able to have such an easy conversation with someone so many years older than me. I find that people have a hard time talking to their peers, let alone others of differing age. But I guess when you get along with someone, age doesnt really matter. I'm really lucky to have a grandmother like her.

Of course it doesnt hurt that she is preparing "clatite", also known as crapes in France. I can tell you now with utmost certainty, having a grandmother that likes to cook and being the only grandchild in the house is nothing short of absolute bliss. Imagine my delight when I woke up my second morning there, (still hung over from my flight) and she had coffee ready and clatite on the way. I think that first morning I talked to her for at least 4 hours.

Like her, there is no other. I love her very much.

Photo Location: Bucharest, Romania
Photo Touchup: Photoshop - Saturation +33, Brightness +10, Contrast +18, Circular Gradient Mask Brightness -45 (out), Brightness +15 (in), Color Balance +35 Blue **This picture was a pain in the butt**
Exif: Canon EOS 30D, 1/8s f/5 at 17.0mm iso500

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Intrare

A photo taken In Bucharest, Romania


















A simple entrance "de la bloc".

Photo Location: "Zona Vitan" Bucharest, Romania
Photo Touchup: Photoshop - Circular Gradient Mask, Brightness -15 (out), Brightness +15 (in)
Exif: Canon EOS 30D, 1/60s f/5 at 17.0mm iso320

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Friday, April 20, 2007

Zona Vitan

A photo taken In Bucharest, Romania












This is the neighborhood (zona) where my grandparents live. It is a forest of bulidings (blocuri), where it would seem that you can easily confuse one for the other and be completely disoriented. It took some time getting used to living in this neighborhood mostly because I never knew exactly where I was. Fortunately I was able to buy a map and better orient myself.

It is really amazing just how many blocks where built.

Photo Location: "Zona Vitan" Bucharest, Romania
Photo Touchup: Photoshop - Brightness +2, Contrast +15
Exif: Canon EOS 30D, 1/2000s f/5 at 17.0mm iso320

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Cer In Martie

A photo taken In Bucharest, Romania












Photography is really funny sometimes. You can spend a whole half hour trying to setup a shot. Work to get the lowest ISO possible, set exposure time, apperature and temperature. Yet sometimes you manage to snap a pretty nice photo whilst driving through a congested city and looking out the dirty window of an old Dacia Logan.

I really like this photo. I think it was shot very close to "Parcul Herastrau" while on "Soseaua Kiseleff".

Photo Location: Bucharest, Romania
Photo Touchup: None
Exif: Canon EOS 30D, 1/500s f/16 at 17.0mm iso400

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Thursday, April 19, 2007

Bucuresti - Bine Ai Venit

A photo taken In Bucharest, Romania












I know, I know, this is a bit of an poor introduction to such a interesting city. I have a large set of photos that show the absolute charm and character of this city. I have photos that show its architecture, its parks and its rather massive boulevards. It was after all called "Micu Paris" or Little Paris. I also have some photos that bare the truth of how this massive city suffered under communism and still suffers from poverty as a result of a still maturing economy.

Well all that aside, this was my first introduction to Bucharest. Via the good will of a family friend, I was being driven from Otopeni airport to about the middle of the city, in "Zona Vitan". When we first got into the city I suffered a mild version of what can only be described as culture shock. Before I tell you why it is important to know that there are a lot of cars in this city. It seems that, however impossible, there are more cars then people. There may even be more cars on the roads then leaves in trees. And whats the result of all this congestion? Well you get some serious traffic, some very creative driving and a need to have steel like courage to travel even a kilometer. So imagine my shock when we drove through this city at rush hour, where cars are plenty and patience is no where to be found.

This might be easier to understand from a different perspective. The distance from Otopeni to the perifery of Bucharest is I think about 14km and from there to our house probably about another 10km. Just to be safe I'd say we drove around 28km (about 22miles). It took 2 hours. Yup, no kidding. So as you can imagine I had plenty of time to take photographs of the drive.

Photo Location: Bucharest, Romania
Photo Touchup: None
Exif: Canon EOS 30D, 1/250s f/11 at 17.0mm iso400

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Priveşte România

A photo taken In Bucharest, Romania












Well this whole thing started with a 15 hour flight. The sort of flight that gets old after the first 2 hours, and it seems that for every passing hour the seat in front creeps closer and closer. I was on my way to Bucharest, Romania via Munich, Germany. I couldn't wait to arrive. I was after all born in Romania, lived there for the first 9 years of my life but hadn't visited for almost 16 years. Looking back now, this was the best trip I have ever taken. I liked this country before I even thought about this trip, but now that I've visited I am in love with it. It really is a wonderful country, full of very friendly and welcoming people, vast and beautfiul country sides and darn good food. Well ya I cant wait to go back. Problem is the long, long time needed to get there.

At the very least I had a new camera to play with on what seemed to be a never ending flight. I decided, after some serious research, to buy a Canon 30D with a 17-85 IS Lens. I'm really glad I did, it was expensive but really worth it. This was my first picture =). This is of course a photoblog, so what you will find here are a series of photos I took from the many cities I've visited while in Romania. All with my new camera (which is now the new love of my life).

So, welcome to the Priveste Romania (View Romania), hope you like the pictures and posts.

=)