St Nicholas – Kalopanayiotis

My family owns a plot of land adjacent to the St Nicholas chapel just above the Kalopanayiotis dam. Since his retirement roughly four years ago, my dad has spent a lot of time up in the mountains cultivating the land, growing all sorts of fruit and vegetables. So much in fact, that most of the time we have to give away food to friends and neighbours!

A few months ago, I decided to join my dad in the field and take some pictures of him in his natural domain. I truly admire his hard work and dedication and at the same time I am disappointed in myself that I perhaps won’t match his zeal and passion to one day take over. My intent was to capture this passion, and through the magic of photography, freeze these memories I have of my dad being somewhere he truly feels happy.


Horsing around

Last week my company organised an event at the horse racing track in Ayios Dometios. I must have been to this place only once before as a kid, though definitely not at an age where I had the chance (or the budget) to personally place a bet on a horse! Admittedly I am not much of a gambler myself, but I did appreciate the “science” of picking your horse based on its physique, training condition, upbringing and one hundred other variables that people meticulously study before placing their bets.

On this occassion, I decided to dig out one old photo that I took back in Aug 2008. Daria and I had decided to go for horseback riding on a Sunday afternoon just outside Toronto. While waiting for our turn to mount our horses, this fellow was minding his own business until I asked him to pose for a shot.

As for the horse races, I think I will return to the track very soon – only next time I’ll make sure I bring my camera to capture some action shots!

Shot with my Canon Rebel XTi, Canon 50mm lens at F2.2, ISO 200 and 1/1600 secs.

Camping in the Okanagan Valley

Shortly after his retirement, my dad decided to hop onto a plane and fly to Canada for a short visit. At the time my brother was living in Vancouver so I decided to hop onto a flight from Toronto and meet them there for the weekend.

What better way for 3 guys to spend a weekend than head out to the Okanagan Valley for some wine tasting and camping out in the woods! The scenery in that area is truly breathtaking. Looking back, one of the great things I miss about Canada is the nature in British Columbia – it really is second to none.

This picture was taken somewhere near the town of Merritt. I remember we were driving around to find a campsite and came across this view. I yelled at my brother to stop the car, I jumped out with my camera and took a quick snap of the lake.

For anyone wondering – no it didn’t rain that night! Somehow we got really lucky!

Venice of the North

Last summer I had the opportunity to visit Saint Petersburg, Russia. A few months prior to my visit, I got a chance to also travel to Moscow and based on that experience my expectations were somewhat reserved. Don’t get me wrong – Moscow is a great city with lots of historical sights, museums and a great nightlife, but its shear size, traffic and pollution don’t rank the city in my top ten list of so-called “exotic” destinations.

Upon arriving in Saint Petersburg I was pleasantly surprised. A beautiful city, full of parks, canals and bridges (342 to be exact!) – it truly lives up to its name as being the “Venice of the North”. Its position, so far north of the equator, means that roughly between the end of June and early July you experience the so-called “White Nights” where the sun does not descend enough for the sky to go dark. Unfortunately, I got there in August but even then, the sun would only set at roughly around 11pm.

This is a picture of the Church of the Savior on Blood – one of the many city landmarks. The picture was taken from one of the nearby bridges at around midnight.

Shot with my Canon Rebel XTi and my 50mm F1.8 prime lens at ISO 200, F13 and bracketed at -2/0/+2.