On Sunday, March 15th I was invited with all members of Travel Bloggers Greece to the opening of the retrospective exhibition of the artist Alexandros Androulakis at the Grecotel Pallas Athena hotel.
The amazing work of the artist from Rethymno was a real pleasant surprise for me. His works represent the modern world while having a purely Greek character rests firmly in the tradition of Byzantine iconography and Greece folk painters.
A pleasant surprise was also the buffet at the lunch that followed the opening of the exhibition which included only outstanding products of the traditional Cretan diet. The food reminded family gatherings in my childhood holidays in Crete. All dishes were as if they had cooked by my grandmother or my aunts. I met the tradition of Crete in Athens and was excellent that this happened to one of the most modern Athens hotels.
This Sunday, January 18 was an interesting day. I was invited to the first presentation of Travel Bloggers Greece at Pallas Athena a Grecotel boutique hotel in the center of Athens.
During this first briefing Elena Sergeeva and Marissa Tejada the founders who had this wonderful idea explained to us in detail the objectives of Travel Bloggers Greece. Also the bloggers who attended the event we made a short presentation of our blogs. This was followed by lunch and a very pleasant conversation that helped us to know each other better. The first day of the presentation included an interesting limo tour but unfortunately some obligations forced me to leave after the lunch.
Travel Bloggers Greece is a non-profit networking group with a mission to promote the interests of travel bloggers that cover Greece as a travel destination. Travel Bloggers Greece also wants to educate about travel blogging, promote authentic travel and the most important for me increased awareness of Greek travel destinations. For all these gentle goals I decide from the first moment to participate as a full member.
More information: Travel Bloggers Greece
December light and some Athens Reflections…
I visited once again the Metropolitan Expo Event Center for the Greek Tourism Expo an international Tourism Fair for Greek destinations. The weather was fine and I grab the opportunity to take some photos.
The Metropolitan Expo – Exhibition Center is the largest, most modern and functional venue for exhibitions, conferences and events in Athens, designed to the highest standards, ensuring thus functionality, flexibility and aesthetic integrity of facilities.
Metropolitan Expo building is located just 2 km after Athens International Airport “Eleftherios Venizelos” in Spata, Attica. Although the exhibitors usually offer free transportation in their events, you can easily visit the venue in the same way someone can visit Athens International Airport.
When I think of my past in photography I can’t ever remember feeling such a sense of satisfaction as I felt when I bought my first SLR camera. It was a Zenit 12XP. The Zenit 12 was first released in 1983 and the XP model was intended for export and so it was named XP from the word export.
I bought my XP in 1987, in Athens, from a Russian immigrant paying a 1/3 of my salary at the time. I had been thinking about getting a SLR camera for years, but my economical situation didn’t permit me to. From 1984 to 1986 I served my military duty in the Greek army, so it was impossible for me to buy any such equipment. When I was finally dismissed from the army, and started working more consistently I bought a Honda 50cc moped and then a guitar with my first savings. The camera was my third serious investment.
This camera became my faithful companion for four years and we studied photography together on the road before I seriously took up photographic studies at the Focus School of Photography. I betrayed her in 1991 and dumped her for a Nikon FM2 and locked her away in a closet to be forgotten.
Mykonos was an insignificant island in the Cyclades until it was discovered by travelers in the late 19th century as it was necessary for them to pass by en-route to the nearby and uninhabited Delos. Several decades passed and by the 1960s Mykonos had become the Mecca of the international jet set and even in more conservative times it had been a gay-friendly island.
Despite the development of tourism that Mykonos has seen in recent years, it still remains a stunningly beautiful island of the Cyclades. Sometimes, it can become a little intolerable because in fact there are a lot of people on the island especially during the summer, but there are always opportunities to explore Mykonos at a more relaxed pace besides high season.
What make’s Mykonos stand out is its unique atmosphere and the light that brings out the best colours of the Aegean, the colors of the sky and the sea, the dry Cycladic stones and the white-washed walls with their colorful window shutters.
The idea of an SLR camera with a pentaprism finder that gives a proper viewfinder image existed before World War II, thus the first SLR cameras were created. During the war we can’t talk about the development of cameras, except maybe that of different systems that were used for military purposes. Immediately after the war when photographic companies became active again, the first SLR cameras started to be produced.
Historians disagree among themselves about which camera with a pentaprism finder was actually first released onto the market; therefore I will present to you the first 2 cameras that are considered to be the mothers of all modern cameras. These 2 cameras were presented to the public in 1949.
Alpa Prisma Reflex
Alpa was the brand name which was manufactured by a camera design company from Switzerland that made parts for Swiss watches, the Pignons SA. In 1949, Pignon introduced its first 35mm SLR camera sporting a pentaprism finder, the Alpa Prisma Reflex.
Contax S was another 35mm SLR camera with a pentaprism finder that was also firstly introduced in 1949 by VEB Zeiss Ikon this time by a company in East Germany.
However observing their shape it is clear to be seen that the Contax S was the camera that was the stantard in terms of design of all the future SLR cameras though even the more sophisticated like the current DSLR ones.
Since this post is about the Mother of all modern cameras, I want to show you a model that was the first camera SLR with pentaprism from Japan; this showed the world that Japanese companies besides copying European prototypes could design originals that could be regarded as archetypal of technological evolution. Please admire the Asahi Pentax of 1957 a wonderful camera and an excellent example of a combination of simple design and flawless functionality.
On the south side of the Acropolis is located the remains of the ancient Theatre of Dionysus. In this area there was the sanctuary of Dionysus whose worshipers came from Eleutherae of Boeotia and for this reason he was called Dionysus Eleuthereus and was celebrated every year during the month of Elafivoliona in late March to early April, the Great Dionysia festivities were held in glorious celebration in honour of the god and was one of the most important festivals of ancient Athens. On this side of the Acropolis was created The Ancient Greek Theatre as a place of significance and all of the plays that were written during ancient times were to be shown firstly at the Theatre of Dionysus.
In the first years of its operation there were wooden stands in the Theatre of Dionysus. During the period of the archon Lycurgus, the Theatre was expanded using stone. It is estimated that at that time The Theatre of Dionysus could hold an audience capacity of more than 15,000 people. In the first series of rows there were 67 marble seats for the officials. This was the custom of Proedria (presidency) and each seat was inscribed with the name of the person for whom it was intended.
Over the subsequent centuries, the theatre was destroyed. For several years works of excavation, maintenance and restoration of the Theatre of Dionysus using materials similar to those used in ancient times has been in progress and the ancient theatre slowly returns to its original form. When you walk around the orchestra and the stands you are dominated by a sense of awe, when you think that here on this site, 2500 years ago, Theatre was born.