Art, Creativity, Photography, Travel, Writing

This extraordinary sculpture is in the grounds of Hauser & Wirth’s gallery in Somerset, UK.

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Taken with an iphone 6+ and edited in Filterstorm Neu and DistressedFX.

The foliage is made from saucepans and kitchen implements. Not only do they have an art gallery – with a truly awful exhibition the day we went there, but an excellent restaurant and a perennial meadow garden, designed by the renowned landscape artist Piet Oudolf

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You will find other inspirational black and white photos on Sally’s blog.

Our next stop along the coast was the pretty resort of Side, which also has a large complex of well preserved ruins next to it. The resort is pedestrianised so you have to leave your car outside and we caused chaos by getting into the lane reserved for taxis and trying to reverse out when we discovered our mistake.

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patterns made from spices

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colourful entrance to the mosque

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the temple of Apollo
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another popular wedding photo location
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more ruins
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a “pirate” ship for day trips
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from ancient to modern – I’m not sure I can see this idea really taking off!
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In Alanya on Turkey’s southern coast we opted to stay in a hotel within the old castle walls. It was a very steep climb from the road up to our room in the hotel but the view over Alanya’s bay was well worth it.

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It was also a popular place for newly weds to have their photos taken

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Next morning we were greeted with this stormy sky

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A couple of years ago we went on a road trip in Turkey at this time of year but I never got round to posting about it. This year’s sacrifical Bayram has just finished so it seems appropriate to post it now.

Today was the most important day of the Kurban Bayram (sacrificial Bayram) when families sacrifice a sheep, goat or cow and divide the carcass up between the family and other less fortunate people. Wherever we saw a group of people gathered out of doors they were busy skinning or cutting up a carcass and in some places we caught sight of blood in the drains – not a pretty sight.

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scenery en route to Tarsus

At Nigde we found ourselves on a motorway that wasn’t even on our map! We passed fields and fields of dark green cabbages. The 3 lane on each side motorway took us through a series of tunnels, 8 in all, a phenomenal feat of engineering. Once through the tunnels, Akcaktekir looked like an Alpine town and the trees were now clad in their autumn colours.

One of the dashboard warning lights came on so we stopped in a service station to phone Hyundai’s 24 hour helpline. They said we could keep going but if the engine speed changed we should call again and with some trepidation we hit the road and completed the trip without any further problems. We were pleased and surprised to discover that use of the motorway was free because of the Bayram holiday.

Once in Tarsus (birthplace of the Bible’s Paul of Tarsus) we found our hotel without too much difficulty, located in the historical part of town and within easy walking distance of most of the main sights.

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entrance to the Tarsus Konak hotel

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Inside the hotel were a number of these shirt-shaped decorations. They are based on shirts produced in Tilsim and feature on ceramic plaques and jewellry.

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historical quarter.

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We visited St Paul’s well – not much to see there,

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the covered Bedesten (market),

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where we saw these pictures of a mythical monster called a Sahmeran

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a stretch of ancient Roman road,

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St Paul’s church memorial (painted landscape murals),

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the Ulu camii (main mosque), noteworthy because its minaret also doubles as a clock tower

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the local hamam,

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another Christian church that had been converted to a mosque,

It was very quiet everywhere because of the Bayram and the only people about seemed to be the many men busily cleaning animal skins in the streets. We tried hard not to look at these.

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eye candy!!

We had dinner in the hotel and then walked down ‘bar’ street next to the hotel, had a drink in a bar and watched football. C said she didn’t feel very comfortable walking around the streets near our hotel especially in the evening as it only seemed to be guys going into the bars.

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Next day we met the Sahmeran outside a shopping mall

I thought the hotel we stayed in there, was the nicest one of the whole trip. It was in one of the historical houses with lots of attractive sitting areas and interesting artwork and pictures on the walls – several examples of Ebru (the art of marbling using coloured inks/paints on paper) as well as some interesting coffee table books. According to one such book, ‘Topkapı saray’dan Tılısımlı gömlekler’ (Tılısımlı shirts from the Topkapı saray) the decorative ‘shirts’ on the walls were based on similar shirts. These shirts feature largely in wall decorations, ceramics and jewellery all over Turkey. It was here, in the covered market, that we also came across images of the mythical creature called a şahmeran, which seemed to be part mermaid and part sea monster.

There is something intensely appealing to me about abandoned buildings. Apart from the fact that I find beauty in decay there are always unanswerable questions – who lived there, what were their lives like, what inspired them to build the building and why in this particular place?

The original photo was converted to a watercolour image
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the same original photo was converted to a pencil sketch
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the two resulting images were then combined
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and given a different colour cast
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This was the original photo
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this is a larger view of the same building – unifinished – I suspect it was going to be a hotel and the owners simply ran out of money to complete the project

Which one do you prefer?

Inspired by Sally Donatello

travel theme: history

Nicosia or Lefkoşa (depending on whether you are a Greek or a Turkish Cypriot) is the capital of the island of Cyprus. Unfortunately it is a divided capital and has been since 1963. A narrow band of no-man’s land, known as the “green line” separates the Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot sections of the city. The same “green line” extends east and west from the city forming a boundary buffer zone patrolled by the UN between the northern and southern parts of the island.

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The old city is surrounded by walls, built by the Venetians, with the gates into the city at strategic points. This shot was taken near the Costanza gate.
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much of the northern part of the city is in a bad state of repair
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house backs

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small old mosque

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interior courtyard of the büyük han, formerly the main trading and staging post and now a cultural centre
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the forbidden zone – it is hoped that at some point in the future this area can be restored, repopulated and rejuvenated

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sculpture, south of the Ledra Street crossing point

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shade sails provide welcome shade in the heat of the summer

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the Phanorameni church in the south part of the walled city

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fountain in the more affluent South, outside the walled part of the city

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in the south

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stencilled logo

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graffiti

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5th century sculpture of lions attacking a bull

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female figurine found in one of the ancient sites

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modern reproduction of a bronze age ceramic vessel

If you are interested in learning more about Nicosia, Wikipedia has a fascinating article

Discover more history with Ailsa and followers

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peacock feathers in Malaysia

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a feather duster seller in Bangkok

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birds of a feather in Singapore’s Jurong bird park

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the new hairdo

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fifty shades of pink

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the aptly named ‘superb’ starling

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“shake a tail feather, baby”

Cee’s fun foto challenge