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Spinalonga, Crete #8

Fortified sea wall in sunlight on the island of Spinalonga, Crete

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The story behind this image

During the two week holiday that my wife Liz and I enjoyed on the beautiful Mediterranean island of Crete one of the places we kept on driving around was the northern end of Mirabello Bay,.

Specifically, the stretch of coast between the towns of Elounda and Plaka, with the island of Spinalonga just offshore.

Spinalonga is a fascinating place, with a rich and diverse history culminating in its use as a leper colony up until 1957.

Liz had a special interest in Spinalonga, having read the book 'The Island', which was based here, so Spinaonga was on our list of 'must visit' places during our stay on Crete.

I was also keen on a visit, having viewed Spinalonga from afar and noted the rather imposing fortifications, a relic from Venetian rule in the middle ages, which looked highly photogenic if you're into dereliction like me!

There's a path that you can follow that takes you right around the circumference of the island at sea level, passing a number of those imposing fortifications in various states of dilapidation.

It was getting on the afternoon as we arrived on the far side of Spinalonga, with the sun tracking lower in the sky and shadows starting to lengthen.

I was arrested in my perambulations by the sight of this stone seawall, in a relatively good state of reapir compared with most of the stonework I'd seen previously, but what really grabbed my attention was the play of light and dark across the scene, with the lip of the wall brightly lit by the sun set against the dark blue of the Mediterranean sea and the brown of mainland Crete beyond.

More than anything I love to compose images based on light and shadow, or chiarscuro as the technical term, as this sort of lighting is so much more emotive that more even illumination.

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Image data

Filename - crete spinalonga 08.jpg

Camera - Canon 6D

Lens - 24-105mm zoom @ 55mm

Exposure - 1/40sec @ f11, ISO400

Filters - Polarising filter used to reduce glare and enhance colours.

Location - Spinalonga, Crete

This image - 533x800px JPEG

Conversion - Adobe Lightroom

Comments - Image slighty underexposed to preserve highlight on the brightly lit wall.