What comes to mind when you think about Venice?

I have had a number of memorable visits to Venice. The first was as a teenager as part of a trip across Italy by train, with my brother. We rented a small room at the top of a house in Venice and my main memory was the smell of the canal outside. It was hot weather and in July at that time there was always a bit of a stink. However, Venice is so wonderful the smell hardly seemed to matter.

Later visits include the time I had to walk across St Mark’s square in my favourite high heels with water over my ankles. The shoes were never usable thereafter, but the memory of St Mark’s stayed with me.

This year’s visit has turned out to be my only foreign trip so far, and it took place in January when Venice is all fog and mystery – a wonderful environment for photography with changing light and emerging scenes.

My favourite shot of the main part of Venice is the ghostly gondolas resting by the quay at the edge of St Mark’s square.

I love the ghostly effect of a long exposure capturing the random movement of the boats on the swell of the Grand canal.

In complete contrast a trip one day to Burano allowed me to capture the fabulous vibrant colours of the houses.

It is said that the house colours were determined by the colour of the boat that belonged to that house’s occupant. Rather sadly there’s a practical reason too, so that if a boat went down, people would know which house to go to with the bad news.

Nevertheless we can enjoy the glory of the often discordant colours with purple featuring quite strongly alongside orange and yellow

The Piazza Baldessare Galuppo – a large square on Burano with the main church also captured my attention. You may think I made a mistake with the choice of lens, but there’s a limit to the photographic ‘correction’ of a church tower that is in fact leaning alarmingly! Nonetheless people hurry to the service as the bells toll.

I loved the alleyway where the washing is hanging out and two old men are walking along in opposite directions. They are destined to cross soon. What will happen? Do they know each other? Will they stop for a long talk, or just nod and pass by? It’s almost the start of a story! What’s your expectation of them?

Of course, as with all of Venice transport is by boat, and the way markers were interesting and attractive

My other main photographic passion (horses) were nowhere to be seen, but I did rather like the way this cat posed in front of an old dilapidated, but still ornate and stylish door.

I am planning to show several of these images and others not shown here, at the Contemporary Art Fair at Sandown Park on October 3&4th so do come along and see them, if you’re ready for a shot of really vibrant colour.

I’m on Stand 134, and if you would like an invitation to the Private View on the evening of Friday 2nd October, please let me know, I still have a few available. It’s always fun, and there’s wine and nibbles too, and the organisers have managed to arrange a COVID secure set up. Lots of space between stands, sanitiser of course and all it now needs to bring life to the event is art lovers like you!