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  • Tuesday, October 31

    Pumpkin Stall at Monistrol de Montserrat

    Pumpkin Stall at Monistrol de Montserrat
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    To continue with the stalls at XIII Fira de la Coca i el Mató at Monistrol de Monserrat let's visit the pumpkin stall. These ones looked so fresh and ripe that I couldn't resist their spell. Besides, I remembered that Halloween was coming and thought you might enjoy the sight as much as I did.

    Monday, October 30

    Candy Stall at Monistrol de Montserrat, Barcelona

    Candy Stall at Monistrol de Montserrat, Barcelona
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    Yesterday we visited Monistrol de Montserrat at Bages in Barcelona province and took some pictures of XIII Fira de la Coca i el Mató (a small market held once a year to sell local products, mainly coca - very similar to pizza dough with lots of homemade ingredients on top - or mató - a soft fresh cheese served with honey). I will start with some candy for your eyes and in coming days you will see the different stalls and local people dancing in colorful costumes. The sweets I tried were extra size, delicate and flashy in colors.

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    Sunday, October 29

    Futuristic Square at Maremagnum, Barcelona

    Futuristic Square at Maremagnum, Barcelona
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    No, this is not a roof, nor the surface of Mars, it is a small square next to Maremagnum shopping center. I really like those peculiar hills you wouldn't expect to see in a park. Maybe that becomes customary in the future, who knows?

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    Saturday, October 28

    Poverty in Barcelona: Tramp at Maremagnum

    Tourism and Tramps
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    Alienated, abandoned, neglected, homeless tramps. Poverty goes with society, it has been there before and it will be there in the future, it is the byproduct of human ambition. Being different and impaired is punished with ignorance and rejection for the sake of the pack. When are we going to think and act as civilized animals instead of just animals?

    Aerial Photo of Maremagnum in Port vell, Barcelona via Google Earth.

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    Friday, October 27

    Clouds over Badalona Beach

    Clouds over Badalona Beach
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    Dull skies may have a special attraction of their own which is hard to find sometimes I know. Winter is coming and nothing seems bright and cheerful, but you can always give nature a second chance and find beauty in black ominous clouds or rough gray sea. I have desaturated colors a little bit, but believe me the day was already dull. As a matter of fact this a view of Badalona beach in the outskirts of Barcelona as seen from Sant Adriá Marina.

    Google Maps Aerial Shot of Badalona Beach

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    Thursday, October 26

    Parc del Laberint in Horta Quarter, Barcelona

    Parc-del-Laberint
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    Parc del Laberint in Barcelona. I already have several posts about this romantic park situated in Horta quarter. I like those kids playing hide and seek somewhere inside the maze. I hope tomorrow or this weekend I have plenty of time for fresh topics. I must go on a tour around Barcelona soon to replenish the archives.

    Wednesday, October 25

    Reflections on New Building near Plaza Cerdá

    Reflections on New Building near Plaza Cerdá
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    Today I will just post another reflection this time on a building which is part of a big project in Barcelona called Ciutat Judicial or City of Justice just in front of Plaza Cerdá in Hospitalet de Llobregat. A group of new high rising buildings will be the headquarters of the main judicial bodies in Barcelona. Built on the same place where the old Caserna de Lepant or Lepant Military Headquarters used to be, they should be finished by 2009. The skyline of Barcelona will push a little higher to impress those entering the city via the airport highway.

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    Tuesday, October 24

    Agbar Tower Reflection on a 22 @ Building

    Agbar Tower Reflection on 22 @ Building
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    To continue with the mirror series today I want you to look at Agbar Tower's reflection on a 22 @ District building. It is hard to photograph this tower by Jean Nouvel and still be original. I don't know how many pictures have been taken from this angle but following that rule of thumb I'd better stay at home. I had a great time this day. It was sunny and I was walking through this side of 22 @ district where buildings are about to be inaugurated and streets are still closed to traffic, so it was some kind of urban oasis (notice the contradiction). I had all the time in this world to stand in the middle of an intersection and shoot at the building. I recommend you take a look at these fantastic images of Agbar Tower by Desenfocado or by Bob.

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    Monday, October 23

    Reflective Light Shaft in Barcelona Forum

    Reflective Light Shaft in Barcelona Forum
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    If you visit the Barcelona Forum building (posted last April 20th) don't forget to step right under this beautiful light shaft with silver reflections bringing daylight to the lower gallery. Or maybe you prefer blue reflections as the ones in this old picture of mine taken a few meters away. These could have been just plain shafts but as you see aesthetics and practical design are not antagonical. Last but not least, remember that a virtual tour or a view of the big solar panel were also featured back in April this year.

    Google Earth Satellite View of Barcelona Forum premises.

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    Sunday, October 22

    Barcelona Forum Area: Stiltwalker

    Stiltwalker in Barcelona Forum
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    While entering Barcelona Forum Area this weekend to visit the II Saló de la Xocolata, an event organized by prestigious chocolate companies to get in touch with the public (let's call it publicity campaign), we found this funny stiltwalker giving children a warm welcome. Here you have two more snaps in a different pose: 1 and 2.

    Saturday, October 21

    Catalan Modernisme: Old Pharmacy and Laboratory

    Modernist Lamp
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    It is late and I am very tired but I don't want to let my window to Barcelona closed tonight, so I leave you with this modest but beautiful sample of Catalan modernisme, a street lamp on the entrance of this old pharmacy and laboratory, near the city center. Notice the elaborate ironwork and specially those little floral adornments on the metal stems along the wall. Here are two more images, a close up of the lamp and a general view from the middle of the street. Nice weekend everybody!

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    Friday, October 20

    Barcelona Photobloggers Opens Exhibition: De la Red a la Pared

    Sculpture of Woman
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    This picture of woman sculpture, sitting and holding her knee, was part of a temporary exhibition some months ago at Illa Diagonal. I rescued it from the archives too. The anecdote here was that it was allowed to take photographs of the exhibition but not of the shopping center, thus the policeman in the background pretending not to see. He had already warned me seconds before and kept an eye on me. One of the many funny or compromised situations a photographer, amateur or pro has to experience every once in a while. I wanted to show an image of one of the many exhibitions in Barcelona this year to make a point today:
    Barcelona Photobloggers , the community made up of more than 50 photographers and representing all photobloggers in Barcelona, opens an exhibition called "De la Red a La Pared", from Oct 19th to Nov 9th at Fotonauta Gallery in carrer Vic, 15 (see Google map). Admission is free. More than 300 pictures taken by 22 members will be exposed and everyone is invited (if you are in the city of course). I have to say that this author could not participate but will encourage the work of the group that represents us all. Here is a link to an article, announcing the exhibition, which appeared today in ElPais.es, the online version of one the most prestigious newspapers in Spain.

    PS: Here is a last minute link to one of Barcelona Photobloggers members: Desnivell, showing a fresh image of the exhibition.

    Thursday, October 19

    Las Arenas Bullring in Plaza Espanya, Barcelona

    Las Arenas Bullring by Rogers
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    As I have not much time lately I am tidying up my archives, now that I can post bigger images. I once published a small image about Las Arenas Bullring, that mastodontic engineering work in front of Plaza Espanya. Summing up, it consists in lifting up the whole coliseum that once held the arena where bullfights took place by means of huge jacks and props to make way for an underneath path among many other things and...check full details or links in the post. Feel free to ask once you come back. Another image here, showing the left side and what used to be the main entrance in this other.

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    Wednesday, October 18

    Barcelona Port: WTC, Cruisers and...Pigeons?

    Barcelona Port
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    Here is a view of Barcelona Port, specifically Port Vell (Old Port) with World Trade Center building in the back, some cruisers and a lot of pigeons baking in the sun. I would like to mention my friend Kris from Little Town in Hungary who also included pigeons in her post yesterday. Once, long ago, in my childhood days I thought they were beautiful. I reckon they might be for those of you living in places where they are not crawling and creeping like rats as it happens here and in many countries. The other day I was fighting over a McDonald's hamburguer with one ot those predators. No wonder they swarm freely in the harbor area, they don't have natural enemies, just hunger, viruses and maybe seagulls, another growing menace in modern cities. Hey, don't misinterpret me, I love animals...birds too, but not THAT many!.
    Relevant information: Barcelona World Trade Center, located at the end of Moll de Barcelona (Barcelona Wharf) was created by US architects, Pei, Coob, Fred & Partners, authors of the glass pyramid at the Louvre Museum. For more details check the official site mentioned above. Cruisers like the ones in the picture depart from international seaport terminals on both sides of Barcelona wharf. The big metal structure is the tower of Jaume I, communicating the port with a neighbouring hill called Montjuic by means of a cable car known as the Montjuïc Teleféric. Amazing view from there! (Check opinions here).

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    Tuesday, October 17

    La Diputació: Barcelona Provincial Council - The Building

    La Diputació: Barcelona Provincial Council
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    This is a balcony on La Diputació de Barcelona (Barcelona Provincial Council). The building is located at Rambla de Catalunya, 126, almost touching Avinguda Diagonal.
    First of all go on a virtual visit here as an introduction. This modernist house called Can Serra, was built from 1900 to 1907 by architect Puig i Cadafalch. In 1986 a new building was raised behind Can Serra, which really holds the administration offices. Barcelona Provincial Council is divided into 12 departments that implement its program in the province of Barcelona: a network of 311 municipalities. Changing the subject, sure I can show you a more pragmatic shot of La Diputació building. Remember there was a previous post of mine back in April related to Sant Jordi where I published another picture of the council.

    Photography Tutorials: Luminous Landscape, sober in design but extremely useful.

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    Monday, October 16

    Casa Batlló: Harmony and Chaos

    Casa Batlló Barcelona
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    An unusual sight of Casa Batlló, the famous building by Antoni Gaudi. I had already shown the modernist house in an older post, but I had this close up of the façade and I didn't like the blown sky in the image, so I thought to go and give it an "artistic" look with photoshop. In case you think I shouldn't have massacred the photograph this way, take a look at the original here. I had a good time though. As to the title chosen, I think Gaudi conceived this chaotic mask-like balconies using that harmonious perfection only complex mathematics can create but that sometimes geniuses easily produce using that mysterious inner inspiration you call gift.

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    Sunday, October 15

    Façade in Bergara Street, Barcelona

    Façade
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    Remember yesterdays' picture about Hotel Regina, well, turn around and look across the street at this precious old building's façade.

    Recommended Links: High Dynamic Range Photography Tutorial

    Google Maps Image of Bergara Street and Hotel Regina in Barcelona, Spain.

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    Saturday, October 14

    Regina Hotel in Barcelona: Wrought Iron Marquee Detail

    Regina Hotel in Barcelona: Wrought Iron Marquee Detail
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    Best Western Regina Hotel is just a block away from Plaza Catalunya and not very far from Las Ramblas, at carrer Bergara 2-4. It features 4 stars, has 99 rooms, was built in 1917 and restored in 2002. As this is not a hotel guide I am not going to analize its services but just suggest you admire the beautiful marquee in blue with stained glass, excellent representative of Catalan Art Nouveau or modernisme.

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    Friday, October 13

    MACBA: Contemporary Art Museum of Barcelona

    MACBA: Contemporary Art Museum of Barcelona
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    MACBA: Contemporary Art Museum of Barcelona, is meant to be "a purveyor of different services for different subjects" instead of a "mere producer of exhibitions" according to their own definition. The building by Richard Mier was inaugurated in 1995. The American architect plays with the use of light in creating spaces. See another Macba photo here where part of the façade is detached from the main building to let the light flow inside. There are some cozy terraces to sit in the sun at least at this time of the year. The big squares surrounding the museum are a good place to relax and read, although depending on the amount of skateboarders that think modern esplanades and walls are the ideal place to practice.

    Google Maps Image of Macba: Contemporary Art Museum of Barcelona

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    Thursday, October 12

    La Font de Canaletes: Barcelona City's Icon

    Font de Canaletes in Las Ramblas, Barcelona
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    The upper part of Las Ramblas in Barcelona, is called La Rambla de Canaletes, precisely because it features La font de Canaletes (Canaletes Fountain). A brief history of Las Ramblas, now that I issued the topic, will introduce you to this icon of FC Barcelona fans and the city. As some of you already read in my previous posts, Las Ramblas were just a muddy path next to the city walls and a stream carrying rain waters towards the sea - the name Rambla in Arabic means strand or riverside. That was long before the walls were extended beyond the path, engulfing the Raval quarter, taking the city limits to nowadays' Avinguda del Parallel. The path turned into a wide road lined with trees by the end of the XVIII century. Part of the old city walls had been demolished and houses were being built along the way. In the second half of the XIX century, the second line of walls fell too, and the city grew as well as the flourishing Ramblas, which were divided into five imaginary parts: Rambla de Santa Mónica, named after a church, Rambla dels Caputxins, after a Capuchin friars' convent, Rambla de Sant Josep or Rambla de les Flors (due to the many flower stalls), Rambla del Estudis, named after a XVI demolished university, and Rambla de Canaletes, where our old XIX iron fountain is. Tradition says all those who drink from Canaletes return to the city. Of course try not to coincide with a day in which FC Barcelona soccer team fans celebrate a victory (quite often lately), as the place is stormed traditionally by a jubilant crowd being the fountain their highest totem and one of Barcelona's most appreciated landmarks.

    Recommended: Footloose in Spain’s Capital of Style, Barcelona, an article by Matt Gross that recently appeared in the Travel section of New York Times. And second best, Gridskipper, the Urban Travel guide, also featuring Barcelona (with a group photo pool on Flickr).

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    Wednesday, October 11

    Street Artists at Work in Las Ramblas: Cleopatra

    Street  Artists at Work in Las Ramblas: Cleopatra
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    With today's post I think my series about Las Ramblas street artists or living statues is over, at least for now. I leave you with these lovers from different epochs. The modern Romeo is a tourist of course and the queen is Cleopatra I suppose, judging by the scepter, bracelets or familiar tiara. For a small amount she would hold your hand and caress it with her cheeks, for quite a long time.

    Suggested Photography Link: Compare lens specs and performance before buying. Thorough tests with charts, graphs and images. Photozone: Lens Reviews.

    A selection of hotels near or in Las Ramblas in Barcelona

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    Tuesday, October 10

    Ronaldinho Gaucho in Las Ramblas, Barcelona

    Ronaldinho Gaucho in Las-Ramblas, Barcelona
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    Don't you leave Barcelona without posing next to Ronaldinho Gaucho, winner of so many awards with FC Barcelona, Brazilian soccer virtuoso, featured in so many TV spots, video games, and even in cartoons. Look at this lucky tourist side by side with her idol, isn't she plethoric?...Yes, I know, shame on me. How do I dare! Don't tell me there is no resemblance though. Sorry Ronnie, just joking. Care for a link, here it is Ronaldinho Gaucho Official Web Site. See this other picture of the artist impersonating Ronaldinho. It took him a lot to smile, wearing such big false teeth, but he was funny saluting the surfer's way.

    Recomended: Search for Ronaldinho's Bio or anything related to him and Barcelona FC in my FCBarcelona swicki.

    Now a different suggestion: Visit Digital Photography School, for tips and lessons.

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    Monday, October 9

    Barcelona Living Statues: Scary Embrace

    Barcelona Living Statues: Scary Embrace
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    I know many people will take pictures similar to mine in Las Ramblas but I do not collect images of Barcelona street artists or living statues for the sake of art, but to share them with those of you who have not visited our city. I was lucky this time to be on the right spot for a fortunate combination: a beautiful girl in the hands of evil. By the way, is he some sort of Star Wars' Darth Maul in black and white sent by Sith forces. Wasn't he red?. Any help here? I chose another one, closer, so you could better appreciate the artist and the improvised model.

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    Sunday, October 8

    Street Artist at Las Ramblas, Barcelona: Equilibrium

    Street Artist at Las Ramblas, Barcelona: Equilibrium
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    Barcelona street artists are experts in disguising and improvisation. They will do just about anything, including levitation to squeeze a couple of bucks out of your pockets. The trick is self evident here but you have to accept that we wouldn't have thought of doing that. I like the expression of surprise in the face of that boy, tiptoeing backstage to determine whether the yogi is really floating on thin air or not.

    To be examined: JPG Magazine- you post your best pictures there and in case you are published in the print edition, you win a yearly subscription and 100$. Important, you hold the copyright. Worth trying? Maybe I check that.

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    Saturday, October 7

    Weekend, Barcelona: Turistic Bus Stop in Plaza Catalunya

    Weekend, Barcelona: Turistic Bus Stop in Plaza Catalunya
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    On any Saturday or Sunday morning in the neuralgic spots of the city you see this image which is becoming more and more frequent as the flow of tourists grow beyond expectations. A huge number of people standing in line waiting for the Bus Turistic to come. I was waiting in front of the Triangle for my wife, and took my camera and shot at the innocent victims (not mine) suffocating under the morning sun.

    Recommended: * La foto del día * The pic of the day *, a new trendy Flickr group.

    Google Maps Aerial Image of Plaça Catalunya in Barcelona

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    Friday, October 6

    Nativity Portal at Sagrada Familia: Three Wise Men

    Three Wise Men at Nativity Portal
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    Gold, Incense and Myrrh in the Hands of Gaudi's Three Wise Men. A magic moment immortalized by the craftsmanship of this master of architecture. Notice how the figures seem to be carved out of the very stone and the capricious pleiade of ribbon-like protuberances or adornments on the cathedral's walls. The Nativity Façade or Nativity Portal has been covered in previous posts, so feel free to browse or search for Sagrada Familia or Gaudi in my photoblog. I have used Photoshop in this picture, specifically Fred Miranda's fantastic BW Workflow Pro plugin.

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    Thursday, October 5

    Pottery at Mercat de les Flors Wall in Barcelona

    Pottery Art on Wall at Mercat de les Flors, Barcelona
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    This pottery exhibition mounted on a wall at Mercat de les Flors just in front of Institut del Teatre always calls my attention. It is a good wall to play with perspective but little illuminated as it is in a sort of corridor between the two buildings. It was midday, bad time for pictures, but there was no choice. Watch detail on the corner of the building.

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    Wednesday, October 4

    Modernist Ceiling at C&A Pelayo in Barcelona

    Catalan Modernisme: Ceiling at C&A Pelayo
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    You all know C&A: A department store with good prices and some nice stuff to buy (unless it has not been ransacked by clearance sales-o-holics). What nobody had told me was that I was going to come across with this beautiful modernista ceiling in white crowning what seems to be the attic or some upper gallery. The only thing I know is that the shop is located in carrer Pelayo, 54 and that it must have been an old modernist house like many in this area. If anyone can provide some more information I could post it somewhere. Here is another view of the ceiling.

    Recommended:
    As you can see I have implemented some new stuff, like the Diggit! and Del.icio.us links embedded in the 'post footer' section of my template. Thanks to Techwrap for code and instructions.

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    Tuesday, October 3

    Catalan Modernisme: Antigua Casa Figueras in Barcelona

    Antigua Casa Figueras
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    Antiga Casa Figueras at Rambla, 83 ("antiga" meaning "former") is a patisserie built in 1820 and decorated by Antoni Ros i Güell in 1902. If you visit this small exponent of Catalan Modernisme you will be able to admire a widespread selection of mosaics, wrought iron, stained glass,stucco and furniture (see detail here). The shop is currently Pastisseria Escribà, a delicatessen and pastry shop in the hands of Christian Escriba, son of Antonio Escriba, the "Chocolate Magician". Christian Escriba is a renown artist who blends pastry with design and fashion. His works have been sold or exposed in most famous shops in Europe.

    Recommended: Now that we mention this exquisite pastry shop, I suggest you take a Barcelona: Chocolate Tour at this interesting blog called In Praise of Sardines.

    Google Maps Image of Antigua Casa Figueras or Escriba Pastry Shop in Barcelona.

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    Monday, October 2

    Living Statue at Las Ramblas, Barcelona: Devil's Work

    Living Statues at Las Ramblas, Barcelona: Devil's  Work
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    I have seen the Devil at Las Ramblas, Barcelona, he wasn't wearing Prada though. Who says the Devil does not rest. One of Barcelona's most famous living statues and mysteriously ignored by my camera until now, was taking a break after a hard day's work. There was no smell of sulphur, like Chávez said of Bush, but it was terribly hot that day. Damn it!

    Recommended:
    Check this impressive work in BW combining two or three images at a time, that is, using dypthics or triptychs by Nitifixis

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    Sunday, October 1

    Barcelona Living Statues: Cowboy

    Barcelona Living Statues: Cowboy
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    Today I resume my Street Artist or Living Statues series, with an updated picture of the Ramblas Cowboy, as I call it. This time using a larger size photograph, which suits him very well. This time it is a closer take from a lower angle.

    Google Maps picture of Las Ramblas in Barcelona, Spain

    Recommended:
    1- Today it is Theme Day for the Daily Photo group, and about 40 members decided to participate, so please check their wonderful work and compare "Taxis" all over the world.
    2- Check this wonderful series called "amnh" by Joseph O. Holmes at joe's nyc

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