Tag Archives: photos

12 Favorite Photos from 2018

2018 was another busy year for my camera. Here are my 12 favorite photos:

Mural, Dénia

Dénia is a coastal city on the Costa Blanca halfway between Valencia and Alicante. I was there during a record-breaking winter wave of deep cold and, somehow, this bright mural made me feel a bit warmer!

Photo taken in February 2018

Bicycle, Valencia

Thanks to an initiative from the local government, Valencia has quickly become one of Spain’s best urban areas for cycling.

Photo taken in April 2018

Street Art Fallera, Valencia

A little different from most street art in Valencia, this is a creative representation of a fallera, an essential part of the Fallas Festival.

Photo taken in April 2018

Giant Eggplant, Valencia

One morning in early June, a giant eggplant (!) appeared in my neighborhood plaza as part of a celebration of Valencian fruits and vegetables.

Photo taken in June 2018

Shrine to Our Lady of Mount Carmel, Bisbat de Girona, Palafrugell

While wandering around Palafrugell trying to figure out directions to the town center, I came upon this small shine in the courtyard of the local parish house.

Photo taken in August 2018

Catalan Curtain, Palafrugrell

In small towns or old neighborhoods in Catalonia, simple linen curtains with a touch of lace adorn many windows.

Photo taken in August 2018

Blue Lights and a Guardian Angel, Girona

The first word that always comes to mind when describing Girona is “bohemian”. The pace of the city is relaxed but at the same time full of creative energy. Distinctly Catalan in style and spirit, I never lack inspiration in Girona.

Photo taken in September 2018

Door, Girona

Doors are practical, but they’re also there to be admired. This door, just around the corner from in Girona’s city hall (ajuntament), caught my eye.

Photo taken in September 2018

Lion, cloister tomb, Girona Cathedral

The Girona Cathedral (in Catalan: Catedral de Girona) includes the widest Gothic nave in the world, with a width of 22 metres (72 ft), and the second-widest of any church after that of St. Peter’s Basilica. Its construction was begun in the 11th century. The Romanesque cloister’s columns depict fantastic figures, animals and plant motifs. The cloister has tombs of prominent members of the monastery, dating back to the 14th century.

Photo taken in October 2018

End of Season, Girona

Autumn is always bittersweet on the Costa Brava. As the tourist season ends, it always feels abrupt, and a bit melancholy, with the cold north wind (Catalan: tramuntanya) bringing an end to long nights on la terraza.

Photo taken November 2018

Window, Casa Sensat, El Masnou, el Maresme

The beautiful county of the Maresme stretches along the Mediterranean coast just north of Barcelona. It has long, sandy beaches, pine forests, and towns with Catalan Indiano mansions where the nouveaux riche used to spend the summer. They are called Indianos, or Americanos because the mansions celebrated the newfound wealth a lucky few locals found in Latin America and the Caribbean. The lavish mansions are a mixture of styles inspired by the architectural fashions of the day – mostly modernist (Catalan art nouveau) and neoclassical.

Casa Sensat, located on the Passeig de Prat de la Riba in the town of El Masnou, was built in 1901 as a summer residence for the  Sensat-Pagès family, whose fortune was made in Argentina.

Photo taken in November 2018

Modernist (Catalan Art Nouveau) Door, Palamós

Located on the narrow main street (Carrer Major) of Palamós, this door is very familiar to me. It reflects the Catalan prosperity of the early 1900’s — missing some hardware, now a bit neglected but still beautiful.

Photo taken in December 2018

12 Favorite Photos From 2017

I take a lot of photos here in Spain — the 12 selected represent what (and where) inspired me the most in 2017.

...Gothic Spiral Staircase, el Museo de la Seda (The Silk Museum), Valencia…

El Museo de la Seda (The Silk Museum) is one of the most important buildings in Valencia. There are many spectacular features, including a Gothic spiral staircase, which remained hidden for centuries behind a wall until restoration of the building began in 2014.

Photo taken January, 2017.

Classics, Valencia…

The window of an abandoned workshop I pass on a weekly basis.

Photo taken February, 2017.

 …Moon Boat, La Vila Joiosa…

I wrote a blog entry about La Vila Joiosa last year. It is a place I enjoy visiting as often as I can and, back in “La Vila” (as the locals call it) in early February of this year, I came across  an abandoned boat on the beach.  Must be a story there.

Photo taken February, 2017.

…Hanging plants and Our Lady, Star of the Sea, La Vila Joiosa…

In the old neighborhoods of La Vila Joiosa, many houses are decorated with hanging plants and images of saints or the Virgin Mary.  The image in this photo is of the Virgin Mary, Star of the Sea — a guide and protector of seafarers.

Plaça del Mercat, Xàtiva…

Xàtiva, about 40 minutes south of the city of Valencia by train, has been inhabited continuously since Iberian times. Tourists visit the city to see its (very) impressive, mountain-hugging castle. Xàtiva also has an atmospheric, well-preserved historic city centre with a charming Market Plaza (Plaça del Mercat). This photo is captures a small corner of it, on a quiet afternoon in early March.

Photo taken March, 2017.

Falla del Pilar (detail), Fallas Festival, Valencia…

The Falla del Pilar this year was designed by local artist Paco Torres. The title of the Falla: Que li tallen el cap (“Cut Off his Head”) reflects its theme of class struggle. This detail is part a carriage carrying aristocrats.  As always, the Fallas festival in Valencia was spectacular!

Faces on Pipes, Xàtiva…

I have discovered (and photographed) many iron pipes with faces in the city of Valencia and this year was surprised to discover more fascinating and mysterious faces in Xàtiva’s historic center…

Photo taken April, 2017.

…Monumento a la Vaquilla (Monument to the Cowboy), Teruel…

The work is a composition of welded iron sheet, integrating three important figures in the history and celebrations of Teruel: an angel, a bull and a cowboy. Crowning the sculpture, a star — the symbol of the city. I took the photo in the late afternoon on the kind of beautiful day that makes Teruel special.  José Gonzalvo Vives was the designer and sculptor  of the monument.

Photo taken May, 2017.

Borja Palace Chapel Ceiling (detail), Gandía…

The Ducal Palace of Gandía was the residence of the Royal Dukes of Gandía, and from 1485, the historically controversial Borgia (spelled Borja in Catalan and Spanish) family held the title. It is also the birthplace of Saint Francis Borja. The 15th century Palace is in the Valencian Gothic style, with a remarkable interior, including the chapel, with a ceiling that captivated me.

Photo taken June, 2017.

Estelada Blava (white-starred flag), Girona…

In Catalonia, Estelada Blava (white-starred flag), the pro-independence flag, has a ubiquitous presence — in fact, I think many non-Spanish visitors mistakenly think it is the official flag of Catalonia.

Photo taken August, 2017.

…Olive Tree (detail), Palamós…

Olive trees are often found in old town squares here — this one is in Palamós, providing shade for a patrons, including myself, of a small café in the center of town. The olive tree arrived in the Iberian peninsula with the Phoenicians approximately 2,700 years ago and, aside from producing wonderful olives and olive oil, olive trees have inspired some fine Spanish poetry including: Antonio Machado (Olivo del Camino), Federico García Lorca (Arbolé, Arbolé), Miguel Hernández (170 Aceituneros).

Photo taken September, 2017.

Teixits, Palamós…

This is a little fabric store just off the main shopping street(Carrer Major) in Palamós — I seems to be from another time, before the shopping became impersonal.

Photo taken September, 2017.

All photos © La Gringa Ibérica