Barcelona Photoblog: tourists
Showing posts with label tourists. Show all posts
Showing posts with label tourists. Show all posts

March 11, 2010

Astray Tourists: Directions in Barcelona

Tourists: Directions in Barcelona, Spain [enlarge]

Finding directions can be tough, specially when you are not good at spacial orientation like me, you know. I am one of those that can't find the car in the parking lot or wouldn't tell right from left after turning myself around. So I understand that in spite of how well designed streets are in a given city, people get lost. Besides there's an extra difficulty, we get clumsy when we are taken out of context. It seems that besides our capacity to know where we are and to follow signs properly, besides our ability to interpret a map, we need a general view of the whole map in our minds. And that's when geography might help. There are cities in the middle of a prairie that if it weren't for the Sun or the stars do make it difficult to reach your destination. Should you get lost in Barcelona, something impossible in the Eixample quarter by the way, always remember that you have mountains around, streets have a certain slope and the sea is right there going down every road. Once you spot those, then think you have two rivers in the other axis. So, when you face the mountain side you've got Besós river to the right and Llobregat to the left (towards the airport). Of course, relevant buildings or streets also help particularly when no slope is visible as in the old part of town (that means you are near the sea!). In general, if you bear in mind that bird's eye view perspective you'll be on the right track. It's funny but this is the second photograph I take of several people around a map and both look like Japanese tourists to me. Is it a matter of idiosyncrasy?. Maybe Western people are more like: "Hey, I carry the map cause I'm good at it". I don't know. How is it in your city? Is it difficult to find directions?

July 27, 2009

A Mexican Hat, Black and White and Musings About the Past

Tourist wearing Mexican hat in Barcelona [enlarge]

In the streets the most absurd, the most trivial situation may be frozen up and become a scene in your imagination and eventually end up more or less fortunately imprinted forever on a photograph. Some of those scenes acquire more meaning or are better off in black and white or sepia. I don't know why is that so. Have you ever wondered why the lack of other colors turns a photograph into something more artistic, more symbolic, more serious perhaps? And wondering about that, why is it that after ten or twenty years, that significance grows exponentially. For example, I am somehow sure that this modest snapshot of a random guy showing off his brand new Mexican hat along the Rambla de Mar bridge near Maremagnum center, looks better in black and white but I am convinced that twenty years from now (not that it is meant to turn into a famous picture) this trifle, brief moment in time, will evolve into something more artistic, into a sort of message from the past, talking about other times, other people at least to me and my family. It is evident that black and white gives value to images because in our imagination we associate faded, blurry, noisy, black and white images with the past. And curiously enough, although recent generations have been surrounded by color photographs there is something there in the back of our minds that makes the association persist. Maybe it is something about chromatism, dreams, the subconscious mind...who knows. Here is a link to a previous version of someone else wearing a Mexican hat but this time in color: Mexican Hats in Barcelona.

Picture Location on Google Map

October 07, 2008

The Digital Era And The Evolution of Tourists

Tourists in Barri Gotic, Barcelona [enlarge]

The digital era has arrived in photography too, and some species like these hunters have evolved into more complex organisms or individuals. Hunting mechanisms have been perfected so shooting is no longer associated with reloading. This photographer is proudly carrying his Sony dslr camera looking for fresh preys to take home as trophies. The woman follows absently, almost frightened by the unknown perils behind every corner of Barri Gotic. Now seriously, I took this picture last month in the Gothic quarter and this kind couple happened to be admiring the streets of Barcelona. They looked passionate and interested in what they were coming across, like children with a new toy, so from here I wish to thank them for their visit. I hope they had a nice stay in the city.

Suggested link: 30 Beautiful Photoshop Illustration Tutorials via Six Revisions.

Do you want to be amazed today, check Dave Hill Photography

September 23, 2008

Taking a Break in Barri Gotic

Taking a Break in Barri Gotic, Barcelona [enlarge]

This gentleman is as tired as I am when the week comes to an end. Like tourists taking a break in Barri Gotic, shall I rest to think of fresh ideas for new pictures.

Influential Bloggers' Tips: Nine Lessons in Search Engine Optimization by Michael Martinez via SEO Theory

July 18, 2008

Spanish Menu for Rambla Catalunya Tourists

Spanish Menu for Rambla Catalunya Tourists [enlarge]

Walking down Rambla Catalunya street there are several terraces that are perfect to have some beers while you contemplate the wonderful architecture of art nouveau buildings and why not of some sculptural bodies especially in this time of year. But let's leave the female topic aside cause I digress. Well, you sit there and ask the waiter for a drink and perhaps a Spanish tapa. Man, I don't know if your budget can afford that but we absolutely try to avoid such places. I reckon they are comfortable and with a view but I can assure you that there are a handful of excellent places some blocks away for half the money and much better food. But go ahead, when you are a tourist you have to play the part; they tell you, and in spite of that, you go and squander your money. What the heck!, you say, these are my holidays. I understand I've done the same in Paris or in London. My advice, you try it but just once. Then mix up with locals they know better. Check that board again: tapas (which ones? there are hundreds!) and then Spanish omelette as the bait (isn't that a tapa). Tinto de Verano (literally, summer red wine), a mixture of cheap wine with Casera, a brand similar to Sprite. The drink is lighter than Sangria and more refreshing. Here is a Tinto de Verano recipe. Gambas are shrimps, hmm that's good but certainly you have them cheaper and tastier some other place. And beer, well, that you know. You have several words to ask for a beer according to the kind of glass or cup. You can order a caña (the smallest), a copa (a cup), a tubo (high and cylindrical glass) or a jarra (a jar). Then you have the bottle measure: the small bottle called quinto and the normal size "medianas" (tercios in other regions of Spain). I hope this odd mixture of Spanish food, tourism and bad reviews is at least helpful.

July 08, 2008

Tourists in Park Guell Gardens

Japanese tourists in Park Guell gardens
Japanese tourists at Park Guell gardens

This is what we call a clotted picture. You might as well try looking for Wally, or in this case, a couple of Japanese tourists in the middle of the exuberant vegetation of Park Guell gardens.

You don't see what they are pointing their compact cameras at but I can tell you: it's the house where Antoni Gaudi used to live when he was building Park Guell which is a museum nowadays.

May 04, 2008

September 30, 2007

Spanish Souvenir: The Bull-Parade

Mosaic bulls in souvenirs shops in Barcelona
This is an all-in-one souvenir, a bull, for bullfighting tradition followers abroad, designed and dressed the cowparade way. The curious thing is that instead of a bull hide this one has trencadis or mosaic in a clear allusion to Gaudi and other art nouveau artists. And the sort of blanket in the way of saddle must be the Spanish flag although it has the same colors as the Catalan flag. So ambiguity eliminates all barriers in order to sell and keep everybody happy. The history of mankind.

June 17, 2007

Massive Tourism in Barcelona?

Massive Tourism in Barcelona?

Right under El peix d'or (Gold Fish) metallic sculpture, by Frank O.Ghery next to Hotel Arts, there is this small artificial pond or fountain where it has become customary for people to wade so as to alleviate the effect of the hot temperatures. In fact you generally see tourists doing this as they apparently are more affected by the humid weather in Barcelona. Not that I am against people relaxing by the fountain, not at least if you can admire living sculptures like these every now and then, but the heat, the sweat, the shabby appearance of a whole day by the beach (close by) and the massification of this area create a sudden feeling of being part of a surrealist dream, you know, with mirage effect included, thirst, dampness, a somewhat sick atmosphere that doesn't disappear till the next fall. I am exaggerating of course but those of you who have been here in the summer have gone through similar trances more than often. As you see there are pros and cons.
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