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Photo Notes

Blenheim Palace - United Kingdom of Great Britain

Blenheim Palace, near Oxford, stands in a romantic park created by the famous landscape gardener 'Capability' Brown. It was presented by the English nation to John Churchill, first Duke of Marlborough, in recognition of his victory in 1704 over French and Bavarian troops. Built between 1705 and 1722 and characterized by an eclectic style and a return to national roots, it is a perfect example of an 18th-century princely dwelling.

Trying to sum up Blenheim Palace in one picture was extremely difficult because of the shape of the main face of the building. The only way to include the whole Northern face was to back away about two hundred metres, down the path from the front entrance. I borrowed a ladder from one of the gardeners so I could see over the crest of the hill and waited until the sun was at its most northern point to illuminate as much of the facade as possible.

This wrought iron is on the edge of a gate to the palace courtyard. Some of the details of the palace were incredibly lavish and it's amazing to realize this is effectively just 18th century barbed wire! I used the live view on the L1 and held the camera above my head to get the balanced composition.

The column of victory is a 40-metre high monument to commemorate the Duke of Marlborough's victory over the French in the battle of Blenheim and is topped of with a statue of the Duke himself. On this afternoon I went out shooting with only my L1 & a pocket full of SD cards because I knew the light was going to be strong enough not to need my tripod. It's a lovely feeling to strip yourself down & work with just one small camera which you trust.

The row of trees in the background of this picture were supposed to have been arranged as the Duke's troops were before the battle of Blenheim. I like the figure in the foreground - as if the advance guard of an opposing army. The Leica lens rendered the sky very effectively with punchy contrast between the clouds & blue sky, adding a touch of drama to the scene.

Photo Notes:
Blenheim Palace - United Kingdom of Great Britain
Historic Centre of Brugge
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