Tag Archives: Architecture

An Architectural Jewel

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For an absolute treat in architecture and photography, make a trip down to Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates, and spend the day visiting the Sheikh Zayed Mosque. This is arguably one of the most beautiful, and exquisite, religious structures of recent times.

The best time to go would be between October and April as the weather would be good. You need to take this into consideration, because you can do as much photography inside the mosque as you could outside. Photographing this structure is a challenge, from the sheer magnitude, to the grandeur, and the crowds that come there to visit.

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The columns create a mesmerizing effect, and if you get a few people in the frame, it becomes all the more interesting. If you are really lucky, and you have some clouds in the sky, then the entire appearance of the courtyard changes, it helps to accentuate the tall minarets and the beautiful floral designs on the floor. Getting down as low as possible and using a wide angle lens further emphasizes this.

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The domes are beautiful. They keep having different effects on the viewer, depending on the time of day that you look at them. At night, the lighting on the domes is set to create the phases of the moon. You must stay till after dark to get an entirely different view of this mosque.

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Once inside the mosque, its like stepping into another world. It takes a few minutes for you to fully comprehend the grandeur and magnificence that the interior exhibits. There is so much to see, so much to take in…you can easily spend a whole day inside the mosque.

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Before you leave, and while there is still light, take some time to travel to spots around the mosque,and try and get the entire mosque in a single frame. It is a picture that you will always treasure as structures like this are rare jewels in the world of architecture.

IMG_8113For more information on the mosque, the visit timings and how to get there, please check this link http://www.szgmc.ae

We hope you do make the visit, and have a lovely time making your pictures. We have been there a few times, but still get amazed every time we visit.

 

 

A Time Gone By

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It was only after we took up photography as a hobby/passion, that we realized that there was so much about the United Arab Emirates that we knew nothing about.  We had read in some of the books on the UAE, that there were several tribes that had lived in the mountains in Ras Al Khaimah, but now that things had changed, most of them had migrated to the towns and cities around, and were leading normal modern day lives like all of us.

So after a lot of reading, studying maps, asking questions etc,  we decided to look for the Stone Houses that were somewhere in the mountains in Ras Al Khaimah. We spent most of the morning getting to the area, and then after lunch, we found the dirt track which would seemingly lead us to the Stone Houses. We followed it, and sure enough, there were the houses, or at least the remains of the houses ahead of us. Made with just stones, and in some places a modern looking window, these houses gave us a feeling of sadness…we could almost imagine the whole place as it might have been in its prime days, each house with its little compound (the boundry was a line of stones all around the house); a small community of people tucked away in the mountains….today there was only the ruins of these houses, broken down, dilapidated, and just memories of a time gone by.

We stayed for a while, took some great photographs, wandered around the place – all by ourselves. There was no other sign of human activity around, just a feeling that while the pair of us were all alone in the mountains, we were not really alone!