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AF-S Prime Nikkor 58mm f/1.4G

Waiting for Boarding at Kadikoy Iskelesi

Istanbul (Turkey). Some days ago, I was browsing a set of photographs taken last December in Istanbul, during a solo walk around Kadikoy (a popular district on the Asian side of the city, which was counting more than 520,000 people in 2012). I found this photo posted here above particularly interesting and representative: it has been taken at the Kadikoy Iskelesi (the harbor of Kadikoy), a very chaotic transportation hub. Here, every day, thousands and thousands of people – from Kadikoy itself, but also from its neighborhoods – come and go using taxis, dolmus (a typical multi-sharing taxi service), buses and boats: it’s easy to imagine the continuous human flow!

When I took this photo, I was just disembarking from the ferryboat coming from Besiktas, another populous suburb (on the European side). There was a “human wall” pushing me from behind, so I had to be particularly fast to compose the image and shoot! From inside the big waiting room, another large mass of people was waiting for boarding to cross the Bosphorus strait, and I was impressed by their faces against the main doors patiently looking at us.

I thought that this was one of the many double-faces of Istanbul. This wonderful city is normally described as “a city across two continents” in the romantic acceptation of the term – and me too, I’m comfortable with this. But for the same reason, it’s also “a city living on two continents”, which means limiting daily movements, enlarging the distances among people, complicating what – in other places in the world – is the so called “daily routine”.

But Istanbul takes large part of its charm in its many contrasts; and within this photo I could capture one of them. Ah, sorry for explaining this, maybe I should let the observer arrive to the same conclusion without my help…

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Waiting for the Ferry to Leave

Istanbul (Turkey). This photograph was taken some weeks ago: while waiting for the ferry to leave from Besiktas to Kadikoy, this man isolates himself from the rest of the world. I think it gives perfectly the sense of loneliness that you can experience in Istanbul – which is ironic, if you think about the several millions of people living there. As I always say, Istanbul is a city of contradictions, and this is one of them

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Fish Farmer Along the Mekong River

Chau Doc (Vietnam). Navigating along the Mekong River’s delta is an amazing experience, no need to say. People living on the floating houses – mainly fishermen and fish farmers – populate this part of Vietnam and make it unique in the world. I was enjoying a solo-cruise at sunset looking for fishermen to photograph, when my attention was captured by this young man sit on his house’s entrance. The perfect light, typical of the “golden hour”, together with his face, his position and the house framing him, made the entire scene very nice to be photographed. I could not resist!

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Landscape of Chau Doc on the Mekong Delta

Chau Doc (Vietnam). Chau Doc is an intriguing destination on the Mekong delta, close to the Cambodian border. I definitely loved this place: I spent some hours photographing the life along the river’s banks, watching people farming fishes and moving with their boats. There’s something of magic here, it’s difficult to explain: a sort of “Vietnamese Venice” that made me thing that if Canaletto were from Vietnam, he would had painted Chau Doc.

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Ticket Window of Haydarpasa

Istanbul (Turkey). Haydarpasa Gar was the major train station in Istanbul and was serving the Istanbul – Baghdad and Istanbul – Medina lines, as well as the Istanbul – Ankara one. It was built in 1909, and it became one of the busiest rail terminal in the entire Asia. Today, Haydarpasa Station is a very silent place, almost unrealistic: no people – except for a couple of tourists – and commercial activities completely closed (I just saw a barber shop and a restaurant open). Probably, the Haydarpasa Station will become the Ankara – Istanbul high speed train line station; others say that the entire building will be transformed in a luxury hotel. I don’t know: it’s not easy to have information about the official master plan. I can only hope that Haydarpasa will not cancel its heritage to become something completely different. It would be a big loss for Istanbul.

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