Forum

Roman Forum I
Roman Forum I

 

Welcome to the heart of Ancient Rome, the Forum.  Couple thousand years back, you’d have seen a bunch of dudes in togas milling about, buying and selling, arguing about politics and religion, and so on.

 

Yeah, so not much changes, except thankfully for better hygiene.  Not sure whether I’m glad or not that Emperor Vespasian introducing pay-only public toilets (still referred to locally as Vespasiana).

 

Roman Forum II
Roman Forum II

 

Here’s a view in infrared from the entrance from nearer the south end, looking northward.  The remains of the Temple of Vesta are on the left, and the Temple of Caesar on the right.

 

Roman Forum III
Roman Forum III

 

And here’s another of the Temple of Caesar, from the front.

 

Roman Forum IV
Roman Forum IV

 

This is actually outside the forum.  Looking toward the middle, you’ll see a smaller arch (the Arch of Titus, wherein is depicted the sack of Jerusalem in the 1st century).  That’s the southern end of the forum.  The larger arch in the foreground is the more famous Arch of Constantine, and the photos taken from the 3rd level of the colosseum.

 

Roman Forum V
Roman Forum V

 

And some ground level color, from within the forum proper.

 

Roman Forum VI
Roman Forum VI

 

And finally, this is from the top of Palatine Hill (behind the Temple of Vesta), where the likes of Augustus lived.  Not a bad view from pup here, huh?

 

Side note, I was expecting much gnarlier hills in Rome.  Guess that’s what seeing San Francisco as a child gets me.  Palatine’s nothing next to Taylor Street!

 

Happy shooting!

 

See more of my work at

Website: http://www.patricklcahalan.co.nf

Flickr: http://www.flickr.com/photos/patricklcahalan

Instagram: patrickcahalanphotography

Facebook: Patrick Cahalan

Pinterest: @cahalan007

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Agora

Temple of Hephaestus
Temple of Hephaestus

More from Greece this time, in the old Greek Agora in Athens.

As I’m given to understand, this was basically the heart and soul of the city in its heyday, bustling with commerce and debate, vote-getting or -stealing (not much has changed in democracy!), and so forth.

The Agora
The Agora

It’s a large space, and very, very pretty.  Full of both the old – temples, ruins of buildings, and so on – and the new – olive trees and other flora – it’s also a wonderfully quiet place early in the morning under a light rain.

The Acropolis
The Acropolis

It’s got great views from some of the higher spots, and when it’s quiet like it blessedly was the day I was there, it’s downright meditative.  And all it took was a willingness to deal with a bit of drizzle here and there!  Well worth that, I say.

Chapel Among the Olive Trees
Chapel Among the Olive Trees

And even the detail work in small, otherwise unnoticed areas is lovely.  Sometimes it’s worth putting away all the complex machinations of photography and just going with what’s in front of you.

Happy shooting!

 

See more of my work at

Website: http://www.patricklcahalan.co.nf

Flickr: http://www.flickr.com/photos/patricklcahalan

Instagram: patrickcahalanphotography

Facebook: Patrick Cahalan

Pinterest: @cahalan007

Rome, Colosseum

Roman Colosseum
Roman Colosseum

On my last big trip, I got the chance to take a fabulous tour of the Colosseum in Rome.  Beyond just the norm, we got to see the high and low, namely, the underground and the third level.

Here’s a shot from the floor of the arena, looking toward the gate that defeated gladiators left the sand (or were dragged, if they really lost).

The Death Gate
The Death Gate

And here’s a few of the underground, where all the trapdoors, ramps, and cages were,  invisible under the arena floor.

Colosseum Underground Part I
Colosseum Underground Part I
Colosseum Underground Part II
Colosseum Underground Part II

And finally, the view from on high.  Just imagine looking down with 70,000 people screaming and shouting!  The NFL wishes it got that kind of audience enthusiasm (OK, so maybe Seattle’s got it figured out, but as a 49er fan I refuse to admit it).

View From the Top
View From the Top

Happy Shooting!

Water Temple

Pulgas Water Temple
Pulgas Water Temple

Looks like ancient Greece, right?

 

This is actually the Pulgas Water Temple, near Crystal Springs reservoir in California.  Built at the final terminus of the Hetch Hetchy aqueduct, it is where the waters of the Tuolumne River finally settle before heading north to their destination in San Francisco.

 

Water Temple, Side IR View
Water Temple, Side IR View

 

I’d only recently heard of it, and it’s a nuisance to get to as it’s only open on weekdays.  But bizarrely enough, that includes Labor Day, so I got lucky on this one.

 

Fortunately for me, it was still and sunny, and not too busy, so it made for great photos that required almost zero post-processing.

 

IR, Center View
IR, Center View

 

It’s one of those old (looking) structures that looks great both in color and infrared.  And if I’m this happy with Pulgas, I’m positively salivating about what I’ll see soon when I’m in Greece.

 

Side View, Color
Side View, Color

 

Happy Shooting!

See more of my work at http://www.patricklcahalan.co.nf  and http://www.flickr.com/photos/patricklcahalan

Hidden Gems

Medieval Tower
Medieval Tower

At first glance you’ll probably guess that this was taken somewhere in Europe, and is several hundred years old.

Not so much.

This is actually less than 10 miles from Facebook’s headquarters, inside the city limits of Palo Alto, CA, in the heart of Silicon Valley.

But you wouldn’t know if unless you did your homework, or lived in the area, or got damn lucky.  It’s actually right off the Page Mill Rd. exit of I-280, on old Page Mill Road.  The name of this bit of wacky is Frenchman’s Tower, named after the nutty Frenchman who built it around 1875 as, depending on who you believe, a property marker, or to harbor the French Empress.

Like I said, the guy was wack-a-doo.

But fun things like this exist all over the place – it’s usually a matter of doing your homework and digging for them.

I’ve found the following to be helpful:

  • Internet (duh). 30 years ago this fab resource didn’t exist.  but now we have Pinterest, Facebook groups, Flickr, etc. etc.
  • Yes, there are even ones specifically for weird stuff.
  • Locals! Who else knows more?  If you’re hard up, there’s no shame in retreating to the bar for a beer and chatting with the guy (or lady) that’s pouring your pint.  Trust me, your bartender knows stuff.

But this is a great way to get off the beaten path.  Go out and find something fun!

Happy shooting!

See more of my work at http://www.patricklcahalan.co.nf  and http://www.flickr.com/photos/patricklcahalan