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Posts from the ‘Previous Photoexperience’ Category


Tracking Galgano (November 26/27th 2011)

The next Photoexperience will bring us to San Galgano, a magic place full of mystery and charm.

We will retrace the places that marked Galgano Guidotti’s life and death, a mystic character in the Italian Middle Ages. San Galgano’s abbey, a huge monument made to remember and glorify the mysterious character, will be the central place of our journey.

Montesiepi chapel, our next stage, is the place where we can find the “sword in the stone”, a touchable memory of Galgano’s conversion and place of his hermitage.
Our journey will come to an end, by going back in time, with a visit to Chiusdino, the characteristic little village where our knight was born.
As soon as we meet, we could start to learn the story of our character, and approach the photographic cues we are going to discover on the next day.
There are many photographic tests we can face during this journey:

  • to catch the abbey’s charm by taking advantage of the atmosphere and light at dawn, right behind the great windows as long as the sun rises
  • to experiment in framing the twists and the plays of architectural elements of the ancient building
  • to try to create a real back-in-time reportage by documenting Galgano’s story, thanks to the marks left on the territory
  • to be confronted with the other partecipants and to learn from the others’ visions
  • to try landscape, architectonic and “street” photography

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Val d’Orcia and its beauties

Last weekend there took place the foretold Photoexperience in Val d’Orcia.
We met on Saturday in Pienza which was the starting place of our explorations. During the afternoon briefing we started to feel the places where we were ready to go. We introduced each other and we exchanged advices on which lens was the most suitable for our tour.
The fear of the rain that welcomed us when arriving at Pienza quickly disappeared as soon as we went out for our explorations.
The cloudy afternoon sky let us shoot some dramatic photos with the help of the proper filters.
Little by little, we explored the most suggestive places in the countryside shooting some of the best Val d’Orcia’s icons and ending the shooting session in Montepulciano with some great street shots. All this was done taking the right time for the best framing and waiting for the right moment to shoot.
In the evening we had dinner together while exchanging impressions on the present day and asking for some news on the next one.
On Sunday we woke up at dawn and went to shoot. We went for classic Val d’Orcia’s icons like the Vitaleta’s chapel, some wonderful places famous for being present in the “Gladiator” movie and we admired in astonishment sunflowers fields dancing with field of wheat.
Time went by quickly and at lunch time we waved goodbye to each others not before promising to meet again at the next Photoexperience.
We appreciated the post on his personal blog Pegaphoto of one of the participants who wanted to tell the Photoexperience he had with us.


Along the paths in Val d’Orcia

Val d’Orcia is one of a few places in the world that can describe the beauty of nature, inspire feelings of peace and harmony and rouse the search of pleasant glimpses. This is the reason why our workshop took place there.

The smooth downhill roads, you walk through ancient villages, become part of the landscape. The places slowly trasform themselves in a painting which we belong to.

The photographic experience in Val d’Orcia is first of all a soul’s experience, in a search of a contact with nature, with the absolute beauty.

When we move along a trail or an unknown dirt road, we always end up with discovering extraordinary places, perfect in their design.

The journey towards our destination begins at sun setting; we drive on the roads between Pienza and San Quirico, in search of a first contact with the landscape and its amenities. We realize that finding a green stretch, a field of corn, a line through a meadow, the weave of the straws, reminds us of a sort of ‘mathematical’ experience like exploring a fractal. We are excited for what awaits us.

While talking of photography in front of delicious local food and wine, we mentally check the things to do the next day.

The day after, before dawn, we leave our strategic basis deep inside the country, to be ready on the right place at the right moment.

We start with an icon of the Val d’Orcia, the Vitaleta’s chapel. The suggestions also increase, as we come to see places immortalized in movies like ‘The Gladiator’: his elysium is here, and we walk with him, side by side, while listening to the evocative movie’s soundtrack.

We are also lucky enough to meet some of the inhabitants of this nature like deers and pheasants.

And then it’s only fields, magnificent trees, rows and rows of cypresses, corn fields, ancient walls and crumbling farmhouses.

After a hearty breakfast, we go inside the wonderful villages like Pienza and San Quirico dominating the valley; also these places enclose ancient stories, evocative and peculiar glimpses.

At the end of the day we say goodbye to each other. We are aware we have enjoyed a wonderful weekend, with terrific images captured by our hearts and minds long before than by our beloved sensors.


Tracking Galgano

The car silently moves on the deserted road; the hypnotic background medieval music leads us to our destination, still hidden in the darkness of the night. It’s very early in the morning but we are excited and happy to be part of something that seemed to be just nice idea.

When we arrive, the huge walls of the abbey of San Galgano are hardly visible in the darkness.At dawning we are already inside the abbey, ready to welcome the new borning day in this mystic and ancient place.

The emotion almost overwhelms us and we spend several minutes in taking shots, silently in this charming place, that little by little as the sun rises appears in front of us.

We are alone, there are only the birds dwelling here ever since, the arches and the vaults of the abbey and the ghosts of all those who lived here centuries and millennia ago.

This involving photographic experience begins this way, tracking Galgano, a mystic character of our Middle Ages. A man who inspired and encouraged the lives of many people who lived here many years in the past.

The abbey of San Galgano was the central point of our day; we took pictures at night till dawn, exploring it inside and its surroundings.

The traces of the saint knight lead us to the nearby chapel of Montesiepi, where we can find the testimony of his legend: the famous sword in the stone, transfigured in a cross, sign of redemption.

After a short rest for breakfast at Monticiano, our last stage ending our journey is Chiusdino, Galgano’s home town.

By walking through the ancient streets we come to visit the house were he was born and the church where his head is still displayed as a relic.

In the end, we come to say goodbye in front of a good dish of local food while commenting the experience we have been through and looking forward for the next ones!