Tag Archives: travel

Silver Sandals

Silver Sandals
A person wearing silver sandals walks across wet concrete and stone, Trafalgar Square, London

Silver Sandals. London, England. July 8, 2013. © Copyright 2013 G Dan Mitchell – all rights reserved.

A person wearing silver sandals walks across wet concrete and stone, Trafalgar Square, London

We ended up in Trafalgar Square in the late afternoon. If I recall correctly, we were sort of between planned activities, so we just wandered around here a bit without any particular goal in mind —I think the plan was to meet up with others a bit later and head of to do something. Trafalgar is a busy place, surrounded by traffic and filled with tourists and others. This can make provide quite an opportunity for street photography, with the potential for just about anything to happen and for any sort of person to walk by.

Before long a cleaning crew showed up and went to work on a section of the square when lots of people had been congregating, using high pressure water to clean off the accumulated grime. Their method of clearing the area was fascinating. They blocked off a small section and then began spraying, gradually pushing out the boundaries, and spraying enough water to persuade those close by to move away. In the aftermath of some of this spraying, a person wearing silver sandals walked along this linear section of the square, with alternating stone, reflections, and shadows beyond.


G Dan Mitchell is a California photographer and visual opportunist whose subjects include the Pacific coast, redwood forests, central California oak/grasslands, the Sierra Nevada, California deserts, urban landscapes, night photography, and more.
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Text, photographs, and other media are © Copyright G Dan Mitchell (or others when indicated) and are not in the public domain and may not be used on websites, blogs, or in other media without advance permission from G Dan Mitchell.

Salzburg, Bavarian Alps

Salzburg, Bavarian Alps
Countryside around Salzburg, Austria and the Bavarian Alps, as seen from the Hohensalzburg castle.

Salzburg, Bavarian Alps. Salzburg, Austria. July 17, 2013. © Copyright 2013 G Dan Mitchell – all rights reserved.

Countryside around Salzburg, Austria and the Bavarian Alps, as seen from the Hohensalzburg castle.

As I have mentioned in earlier posts, while we did not actually stay in Salzburg during our 2013 trip to London, Germany, and a tiny bit of Austria, were there on several days during our week near Berchtesgaden, Bavaria. We arrived in Salzburg by train from Heidelberg, and we left from Salzburg on the return journey. In between we made additional visit to Salzburg and the surrounding area.

On this visit we decided to walk up to and into the Salzburg Castle, sitting high above the old city. The castle is worth the visit for many reasons, but if you keep climbing… and climbing… and climbing you can eventually reach the highest accessible point, from which you have huge panoramic views in all directions. Behind me was the city itself, and stretching off in this direction was an alternative patchwork of buildings and fields and trees that appeared to reach all the way to the base of the Alps in the far distance.


G Dan Mitchell is a California photographer and visual opportunist whose subjects include the Pacific coast, redwood forests, central California oak/grasslands, the Sierra Nevada, California deserts, urban landscapes, night photography, and more.
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Text, photographs, and other media are © Copyright G Dan Mitchell (or others when indicated) and are not in the public domain and may not be used on websites, blogs, or in other media without advance permission from G Dan Mitchell.

Woman with Umbrella, Salzburg Street

Woman with Umbrella, Salzburg Street
A Salzburg, Austria street scene including a woman with an umbrella

Woman with Umbrella, Salzburg Street. Salzburg, Austria. July 17, 2013. © Copyright 2013 G Dan Mitchell – all rights reserved.

A Salzburg, Austria street scene including a woman with an umbrella

This is one of those photographs that you could see in any number of ways, I think. It is a narrow street in Salzburg, Austria, not far from the main square and the Salzburg Cathedral and perhaps right in front of the building that is described as the birthplace of Mozart. (Somehow the juxtaposition of a shopping district with that place seems just a bit jarring.) You could regard it as an almost random scene from this street, though I think there is a bit more going on.

One of the things I like about street photography is working quickly and spontaneously, reacting quickly to people, events, and juxtapositions that may last only for a brief moment. If I recall correctly, I perhaps began simply by thinking “there is a shot here somewhere, with all these people on this narrow street.” Then things began to coalesce a bit when I noticed the bright backlight streaming almost directly down the street and stretching long shadows toward me. Then I saw the woman with the dark umbrella — and who can resist a photograph of umbrellas!? As she walked past I quickly made a brief series of photographs, trying to instantly place her and her shadow in some kind of compositional relationship with people and objects in the scene. From this series, this one has her standing slightly apart from others and with her shadow stretching toward the lower part of the frame, and a similar shadow from another woman almost parallels it. The people at front right were in shadow (yes, some work in post makes them more visible) but I felt like they provided some balance to the brightness on the left side of the frame and, to me at least, there is something a bit odd and interesting about their intense gaze at something behind me. Looking closer at the people in the scene — closer than I could consciously look when I pressed the shutter release — I find the dark figure on the right margin interesting, and as the people stretch into the distance several of them seem to have stories to tell, too.


G Dan Mitchell is a California photographer and visual opportunist whose subjects include the Pacific coast, redwood forests, central California oak/grasslands, the Sierra Nevada, California deserts, urban landscapes, night photography, and more.
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Text, photographs, and other media are © Copyright G Dan Mitchell (or others when indicated) and are not in the public domain and may not be used on websites, blogs, or in other media without advance permission from G Dan Mitchell.

Windows, Lamp, Shadow

Windows, Lamp, Shadow
A street lamp and its shadow between two windows, Salzburg, Austria

Windows, Lamp, Shadow. Salzburg, Austria. July, 17, 2013. © Copyright 2013 G Dan Mitchell – all rights reserved.

A street lamp and its shadow between two windows, Salzburg, Austria

In the summer of 2013 we spent three weeks visiting London, Heidelberg, and the Berchtesgaden area of Bavaria. Since we traveled there from Heidelberg by train, we arrived and departed at Salzburg — and since Salzburg was so close we managed to visit that city on other days during our stay. With our musical backgrounds, the first thing we think of when we think of Salzburg is Mozart, since this is his birthplace and the city is still something of a musical center. Of course, once we arrived we realized there is a lot more to the place. (Did someone say “coffee?”)

I love wandering around in virtually any city with a camera, and I did a bit of that sort of wandering here. It was only after photographing in different areas and on different days that I began to recognize these characteristic lamps showing up in many photographs of diverse subjects, at which point they became a bit of a subject for me.


G Dan Mitchell is a California photographer and visual opportunist whose subjects include the Pacific coast, redwood forests, central California oak/grasslands, the Sierra Nevada, California deserts, urban landscapes, night photography, and more.
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Text, photographs, and other media are © Copyright G Dan Mitchell (or others when indicated) and are not in the public domain and may not be used on websites, blogs, or in other media without advance permission from G Dan Mitchell.

Bavarian Alps, Berchtesgaden National Park

Bavarian Alps, Berchtesgaden National Park
The Bavarian Alps rise above Königsee in Berchtesgaden National Park, Germany

Bavarian Alps, Berchtesgaden National Park. Königsee, Bavaria, Germany. July 14, 2013. © Copyright 2013 G Dan Mitchell – all rights reserved.

The Bavarian Alps rise above Königsee in Berchtesgaden National Park, Germany

Over the course of a summer week in 2013 we had a lot of opportunities to gaze at these Bavarian Alps. We spent a week with family in the Berchtesgaden area, staying in a big farm-house with views across a bucolic valley and into the mountains as they rose to the summit of the Watzmann, the second-highest peak in Germany. We did the “tourist thing” and rode the electric boats up the Königsee Lake between high ridges, and on one memorable day we visited Jennerbahn, took the tram to the top, and spent the rest of the day descending alpine valleys on foot — with a mid-hike stop for snacks and a beer!

During our stay I think I got a sense of how these mountains are different from my “home range” of the Sierra Nevada — though I would need a much longer stay and more hiking to get to know them well. Because they are built from different sorts of rock, the shapes of the peaks are often quite different. The tall rugged peaks also rise almost directly from relative lowlands — for example, a short hike took us from the lake to the base of a huge cliff at Die Eiskapelle, a place that felt thoroughly alpine. In the Sierra we have kept vast stretches of the range relatively wild, isolated from human structures to the point that one can imagine that he/she is in a fully wild place. In the alps there are huts, and you can stop for a beer in the middle of an afternoon hike! The ridges and valley in this photograph rise from the shoreline of the Königsee.


G Dan Mitchell is a California photographer and visual opportunist whose subjects include the Pacific coast, redwood forests, central California oak/grasslands, the Sierra Nevada, California deserts, urban landscapes, night photography, and more.
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Text, photographs, and other media are © Copyright G Dan Mitchell (or others when indicated) and are not in the public domain and may not be used on websites, blogs, or in other media without advance permission from G Dan Mitchell.

Saint Paul’s Cathedral, Night

Saint Paul's Cathedral, Night
Pedestrians along a walkway leading toward Saint Paul’s Cathedral, London

Saint Paul’s Cathedral, Night. London, England. July 5, 2013. © Copyright 2013 G Dan Mitchell – all rights reserved.

Pedestrians along a walkway leading toward Saint Paul’s Cathedral, London

St. Paul’s Cathedral is an obvious landmark at any time, but at night it is even more so, especially if you approach it from across the River Thames by way of the Millennium Bridge. We visited the bank opposite the cathedral on several evenings, so I can no longer remember precisely what we had been there for on this evening — The Old Globe Theater, meeting up with relatives for dinner, a visit to the Tate Modern? I’m not certain.

In any case, we ended up crossing the river in this direction after dark on a warm summer evening when many people were out strolling around. This was one of the first times when I realized that my little mirrorless camera was good enough in low light that I could actually do handheld night photography.


G Dan Mitchell is a California photographer and visual opportunist. Blog | About | Flickr | Twitter | FacebookGoogle+ | 500px.com | LinkedIn | Email


All media © Copyright G Dan Mitchell or others where indicated. Any use requires advance permission from G Dan Mitchell.

Salzburg Cathedral

Salzburg Cathedral
The Salzburg Cathedral and surrounding area, Salzburg, Austria

Salzburg Cathedral. Salzburg, Austria. July 15, 2013. © Copyright 2013 G Dan Mitchell – all rights reserved.

The Salzburg Cathedral and surrounding area, Salzburg, Austria

On this trip to Europe in the summer of 2013 we did not actually stay in Salzburg, Austria — but we did end up in this town several times. In the middle of our visit, which started in London and then included Heidelberg, we took a weeklong trip to Bavaria where we stayed in a big old farmhouse near Berchtesgaden and Königsee, with views of the Alps. Our train from Heidelberg ended up in nearby Salzburg, we ended up visiting Salzburg again while we were “just up the road” in Bavaria, and then we went back to Salzburg again to catch the return train to Heidelberg.

This spectacular cathedral is a famous icon of Salzburg, and here it is seen from a slightly elevated location just outside of this central square. Since I shoot digital, the original photograph is color, but it seemed to me that the bit of dramatic cloudiness would be more effective in monochrome, and the brighter light on the close walls of the structure seem “right” in black and white, too.


G Dan Mitchell is a California photographer and visual opportunist whose subjects include the Pacific coast, redwood forests, central California oak/grasslands, the Sierra Nevada, California deserts, urban landscapes, night photography, and more.
Blog | About | Flickr | Twitter | FacebookGoogle+ | 500px.com | LinkedIn | Email

Text, photographs, and other media are © Copyright G Dan Mitchell (or others when indicated) and are not in the public domain and may not be used on websites, blogs, or in other media without advance permission from G Dan Mitchell.