Ripon, England – Part 2

For viewers who are new to my blog, I have just started to document my current home of Ripon, North Yorkshire before we sell our current house and move home to Scotland. This is the second post in the series and I have included 7 new photographs of what is essentially a medieval market town and Cathedral City. I hope you like the photographs:

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Looking across the Market Square from East to West with the Green Cab Drivers Hut and traditional red British Telephone Boxes in view.

I just love the deep red colour of telephone boxes and Royal Mail Pillar Boxes in this country!

Looking along Kirkgate from Ripon Cathedral.

Looking along Kirkgate from Ripon Cathedral.

Kirkgate is one of the oldest streets in Ripon and it runs from the front of Ripon Cathedral, east to west, towards the Market Square. This photograph was taken from outside the Cathedral entrance looking towards the Market Square.

One of the beautiful large houses in Park Street.

One of the beautiful large houses in Park Street.

Park Street has some lovely old houses which have been superbly preserved and looked after. The direction of this photograph, and the next image of our Doctors’ Surgery, is looking generally west to east towards the Market Square.

This building houses our Doctor's Surgery in Park Street.

This building houses our Doctor’s Surgery in Park Street.

I hate visiting the doctor but I love the inside and outside of the building!

There is something about tiled roofs and chimney stacks!

There is something about tiled roofs and chimney stacks!

I cannot understand my fascination with tiled roofs and chimney stacks but I seem to have a lot of photographs of different types in my photograph bank! This one is of a roof in High Skellgate.

The Workhouse Museum in Allhallowgate.

The Workhouse Museum in Allhallowgate.

You have probably heard of the Workhouses that used to be all over this country. If you have ever watched the musical ‘Oliver!’ you will have an even better idea of what I am talking about! These places were for the poor and destitute who had nowhere else to go, at a time when there was no Welfare State. The environment was harsh and discipline was strict! Ripon Workhouse was still in operation as a workhouse until around 1930, and still took in vagrants until the early 1950s, although the welfare state was by then in operation! Before I retired as Headteacher (Principal) of a local school, one of our children’s grandmothers, who I got to know quite well, told me that she had been in the Workhouse as a child! Not as far in the past as we tend to think! The Workhouse now houses Ripon Workhouse Museum, which makes for a really interactive and interesting visit!

Ripon Market Square.

Ripon Market Square.

In ‘Ripon, England – Part 1’ I published the first image of Ripon Market Square. This second image gives a wider perspective on the square. There is a market held here every Thursday and I hope to be able to show you some photographs of the square with its stalls set up, if I can get permission to take photographs from the balcony in the Town Hall!!

That is all for this post and I hope you have enjoyed the photographs published here.

You can access more of my photographs by:

THIS BLOG – Click on the ‘PHOTOGRAPHIC POSTS’ button on the menu at the top of the post. There you can choose to see posts listed by country, and then by place within that country. In the right hand column you can also sign up to receive e-mail notification of future posts as I publish them!

MY WEBSITE – This site is mainly photographic. From the initial screen, which scrolls through a few of my photographs as a taster, you can select PORTFOLIO, choose a COUNTRY, and a PLACE and then select individual photographs to look at from the thumbnail bar. Scrolling over each photograph using your mouse will bring up a caption about the image being viewed. Click this link www.johnstirlingphotography.com to go to the website now, or access it later by clicking the link under the ‘Check out my Website’ caption at the top of the right hand column of the blog. There, you can view my photographs at your leisure!

SEND FREE E-MAIL POSTCARDS TO YOUR FRIENDS, RELATIVES ETC. – When you have accessed my website and reached the individual images of your choice, you can access my online shop (PHOTOMOTO), where you can send free e-mail postcards of your selected image, or images, to any of your friends! This facility is completely free and is made available to open up access of my work to a wider audience – you get to send free e-mail postcards with quality images to your friends and I benefit from a wider audience!

Cheers until next time!

John

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Mount Titlis, Switzerland – Part 2

My reasons for publishing this second Mount Titlis post are twofold. First of all, I love mountains, and the Mount Titlis Rotair cable car, and other cog railways and chairlifts are the only way I can experience being on the top of mountains taking lots of photographs. I am not a climber, have never been one, and have no wish to ever be one!

The second reason is more technical in nature and has to do with print sizes, so for those of you who want to avoid this section, you can go straight to the photographs!

In the last few years, I have been lucky enough to own and appreciate 3 digital SLR cameras. I first of all owned a Canon EOS 10D (6.3 megapixels, APS-C digital sensor) and then a Canon EOS 20D (8.2 megapixels, APS-C digital sensor). Both cameras produced great, pin sharp images, however, in the conversion from RAW to TIFF file types using Photoshop, the file sizes produced meant that the maximum print size that could be produced without starting to lose that pin sharp output was A3 (42cm x 29.7cm) size. I have always had an A3 printer, and for my required output, that has always been adequate. However, I have always wanted to be able to have the ability to produce large poster sized images if necessary.

My current camera is a Canon EOS 5D Mk II (21.1 megapixels, full-frame 35mm sensor) and this produces a huge file size when converted from RAW to TIFF file types. Using Photoshop once again, I could see by the rulers and detail on screen that the files should print up to A0 (118.9cm x 84.1cm) without loss of pin sharp output, but I had no way of putting this to the test!

Low and behold, what should happen recently but a new digital print shop opened up in the centre of Ripon, with the ability to print images up to and well above A0! Being keen to put one of my large file photographs to the test, and to test out the print shop itself, I decided to have the first image published in this post printed at A1 (84.1cm x 59.4cm) size. I was overwhelmed by the size, the quality and the pin sharp detail, right down to some little huts on the edge of the mountain lake, which hadn’t been noticeable in smaller prints!

I hope you like the photographs:

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Mount Graustock (in foreground to right) and Engstlensee (Lake)

The lake that you can just see in the middle of the photograph has some huts on its edge which can easily be seen on the A1 (84.1cm x 59.4cm) print.

Caterpillar Digger at 10,000ft!!

Caterpillar Digger at 10,000ft!!

I have seen Caterpillar Tractors in some strange places but never in a thousand years did I expect to find one here,…

Communications Tower at 10,000 ft!!

Communications Tower at 10,000 ft!!

…and some other unexpected technology,…

Cable Car Station and associated building levels of Klein Titlis at 10,000ft!!

Cable Car Station and associated building levels of Klein Titlis at 10,000ft!!

… and cafes, restaurants and shops!!

Trubsee Lake and Mount Huetstock

Trubsee Lake and Mount Huetstock

I suppose I shouldn’t really be surprised, considering the whole experience – the unparalleled views, the cafes, the restaurants, the shops, and for those who enjoy extreme sport – the climbing, snowboarding and skiing!

Thanks for dropping by and I hope you have enjoyed the photographs. You are more than welcome to stay a while and have a look at some more of my work.

You can access more of my photographs by:

THIS BLOG – Click on the ‘PHOTOGRAPHIC POSTS’ button on the menu at the top of the post. There you can choose to see posts listed by country, and then by place within that country. In the right hand column you can also sign up to receive e-mail notification of future posts as I publish them!

MY WEBSITE – This site is mainly photographic. From the initial screen, which scrolls through a few of my photographs as a taster, you can select PORTFOLIO, choose a COUNTRY, and a PLACE and then select individual photographs to look at from the thumbnail bar. Scrolling over each photograph using your mouse will bring up a caption about the image being viewed. Click this link www.johnstirlingphotography.com to go to the website now, or access it later by clicking the link under the ‘Check out my Website’ caption at the top of the right hand column of the blog. There, you can view my photographs at your leisure!

SEND FREE E-MAIL POSTCARDS TO YOUR FRIENDS, RELATIVES ETC. – When you have accessed my website and reached the individual images of your choice, you can access my online shop (PHOTOMOTO), where you can send free e-mail postcards of your selected image, or images, to any of your friends! This facility is completely free and is made available to open up access of my work to a wider audience – you get to send free e-mail postcards with quality images to your friends and I benefit from a wider audience!

Cheers until next time!

John

Verona, Italy

While visiting Lake Garda on one of our trips to Italy, we embarked on a day’s tour to the city of Verona; not because we had heard anything special about the city itself, but because of the link with William Shakespeare’s plays. The stories of ‘Romeo and Juliet’ and ‘The Two Gentlemen of Verona’ are set there and that in itself draws many tourists from around the world! Of course, we had to visit the famous balcony where Romeo is supposed to have wooed Juliet, and take a photograph, but we were not enticed into paying to have our photographs taken on the balcony itself! We left that to younger romantics!

The walled city itself is very pretty, is steeped in history like virtually all of Italy, and well worth a visit! Unfortunately, I didn’t get to take many photographs because we were taken round at a very quick pace, but I hope you will enjoy the selection published here, including the famous balcony itself!

This street is Via Leoni and Juliet's house and balcony are on the right a few hundred metres ahead

This street is Via Leoni and Juliet’s house and balcony are on the right a few hundred metres ahead

Juliet's House and Balcony

Juliet’s House and Balcony

We were amazed by the number of tourists visiting what is essentially a totally fictitious tourist attraction! What stunned us even more were the number of English speaking people there who gave me the impression that they were visiting an actual, genuine, historical site! Some human beings never fail to amaze and amuse!

Verona Market

Verona Market

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Far end of Verona market showing links with Venice (the winged lion). The intricate designs on the building facades are wonderful!

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Statue of the famous poet Dante who came to Verona on his exile from his home city of Florence.

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Tower of Torre dei Lamberti. I liked the colours and angles in this shot.

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This is ‘Arena di Verona’ where operatic concerts are performed.

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We had a lovely lunch in this restaurant overlooking the ‘Arena di Verona’.

It was a very enjoyable day trip and well worth the visit! Just remember, if you do happen to find yourselves there, the story of Romeo and Juliet is pure fiction; but fun to visit all the same!

Cheers!

John

Ripon, England – Part 1

We have lived and worked in Ripon for 21 years and in all of that time I have taken very few photographs of this very small city that we call home. In reality, as you will see from the photographs here and those to come in future posts, it is actually a small town in size, but because it has a historical cathedral and was once a much more important place, it is classed as a Cathedral City! If you read my last post, you will be aware that we are moving back home to Scotland as soon as our house is sold and Penny (my other half) retires in the summer. With that in mind, I have decided to ‘document’ Ripon in terms of photographs over the next few months, so that we have a record of where we lived for so many years, and also so that others via this blog, can see what the city looks like now! I have already published a few photographs of Ripon in a previous post, ‘John’s Mega Awards Ceremony’, in case you would like to visit after viewing this post. Just click on the link when you are ready!

Ripon Town Hall at the southern end of the Market Square

Ripon Town Hall at the southern end of the Market Square

The east side of the Market Square

The east side of the Market Square

Royal Air Force Association office on Kirkgate

Royal Air Force Association office on Kirkgate

High Skellgate

High Skellgate

Some houses on High Skellgate

Some houses on High Skellgate

Ripon Bandstand in Spa Park

Ripon Bandstand in Spa Park

If you use Google Maps or Google Earth, on the hybrid setting (which gives you an overlaid, annotated map and satellite image), you should be able to match up the photographs to the map! These are just random images which over a number of posts will hopefully build up into a ‘picture’ of this lovely Yorkshire city! Thanks for visiting and I hope you come by again! Other posts can be accessed from the archives in the side column on the right!

Cheers!

John

Our New Place – Sometime Soon?

As I indicated in a previous post, we have decided to sell our current house in England, and move back to Scotland, when Penny (my other half) retires in July! We have reserved a new house, which will be built when we sell our current one, which is on the market! We are very excited about ‘going home’ and I wanted to share a few photographs of places close to Kilwinning, North Ayrshire, where our new home will be! I am not only excited by the move, but also the photographic opportunities it will provide, particularly when we are both retired and can go off on adventures around Scotland when we wish (when the weather forecast for a particular area is at its best)!

View from Mainland scotland to the Isle of Arran (2 minutes from house)

View from Mainland Scotland to the Isle of Arran (2 minutes west of the house)

The seaside town of Largs - 15 minutes north of the house

The seaside town of Largs (15 minutes north of the house)

A view from the seaside town of Ayr (15 minutes south of the house)

A view from the seaside town of Ayr (15 minutes south of the house)

The Gourock car ferry (30 minutes north of house)

The Gourock car ferry (30 minutes north of house)

A stormy Firth of Clyde view (15 minutes from house)

A stormy Firth of Clyde view (15 minutes from house)

You can see sharper versions of the photographs by clicking on each one in turn. I hope you can see why we are excited about ‘going home? I will keep you up-to-date with our changes as they occur, with more Scottish images! Hope to have your company on my blog again soon!

Cheers!

John

Stirling, Scotland

I know the town of Stirling very well! I attended the University of Stirling, where I met my beautiful wife, and graduated before embarking on a teaching career! Dunblane, which is a couple of miles north of Stirling, is also my historic family seat, and my parents, sister and I used to make regular visits from Glasgow to visit relatives when I was a ‘wee lad’!

Within our family, the story is told that my original family name was Stribling, and that one of my ancestors of this name was a high ranking officer in Robert the Bruce’s army during the Battle of Bannockburn in 1314! He, along with other officers, was supposedly given the honour of changing his surname to that of the nearest town, Stirling, after the battle was won! This is a story that has passed down from my great, great aunt, who was interested in genealogy, and had supposedly researched such matters, but I have no evidence of the truth of the story! It is one of those stories that, as a Scot, one hopes is true!

Anyway, enough about my links with the town of Stirling – here are my ‘historical’ photographic offerings for this post!

Stirling Castle - Home of the Argyll and Sutherland Highlander Regiment

Stirling Castle – Home of the Argyll and Sutherland Highlander Regiment

Stirling Castle remains the headquarters of the famous Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders, although the regiment no longer exists within the British Army. The regimental museum and historic battle honours are housed within the castle.

The Wallace Monument, Stirling - in honour of William Wallace - Scottish Patriot!

The Wallace Monument, Stirling – in honour of William Wallace – Scottish Patriot!

The Wallace Monument, which lies to the east of Stirling, is dedicated to the memory of the Scottish Patriot and Hero, William Wallace, and it houses an interactive history of his life, as well as being the home of the Wallace Sword. There is much controversy about whether this sword was ever his, but it has become an important symbol of the man himself.

Statue of Robert the Bruce - King of Scotland at the site of the Battle of Bannockburn (1314)

Statue of Robert the Bruce – King of Scotland at the site of the Battle of Bannockburn (1314)

Bannockburn lies on the southern boundary of the town of Stirling, and the battlefield itself is marked by the above statue and the Bannockburn Heritage Centre, which houses the history of the battle. Bannockburn has a significant place in the history of the Scotland Wars of Independence against the occupying English forces!

Robert the Bruce - King of Scotland

Robert the Bruce – King of Scotland

Robert the Bruce - King of Scotland

Robert the Bruce – King of Scotland

The history of this period, and its famous characters, is known worldwide and much romanticised by the movie ‘Braveheart’! However fictitious the content of the movie, the people did exist, and there is no doubt that the story of William Wallace (Mel Gibson in the movie) still stirs the heart and soul of every patriotic Scot (including myself)! ‘FREEDOM’!

To finish this post and bring us back to the present time, and to end on a lighter note, here are some photographs of a ‘modern statue’ which I found, totally by chance, in the middle of a minor roundabout near Stirling, surrounded by nothing but fields!

Rhythmic Gymnast

Rhythmic Gymnast

Rhythmic Gymnast 2

Rhythmic Gymnast 2

Rhythmic Gymnast - in a roundabout surrounded by fields?

Rhythmic Gymnast – in a roundabout surrounded by fields?

She is beautiful, isn’t she? All done with tiny pieces of metal! Sometimes you find the strangest of things in the most unlikely places!

Cheers!

John

Firth of Clyde, Scotland

The West of Scotland can often be stormy, wet and downright miserable but I still love the place because it is ‘home’! Quick post of a stormy, Firth of Clyde!

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Heads of Ayr and Firth of Clyde

Stormy sky and kite surfer

Stormy Sky and Kite Surfer

Stormy Skies, Kite and Jet from Prestwick to the USA

Stormy Skies, Kite and Jet from Prestwick to the USA

The Storm Clears!

The Storm Clears!

Cheers!

John