• wear some flowers in your hair

    This striking window display is from Brown Thomas in Dublin yesterday. I stopped to snap it as I swayed down Grafton Street after an enjoyable evening with a visiting friend. We’d just attended the Dublin Literary Pub Crawl, which combined culture, history and theatrical renactments with stops in landmark pubs. Clear and temperate weather made the excursion even more pleasant. During the 2-hour tour a lot of information was imparted about figures such as Joyce, Beckett, Jim Larkin, Oscar Wilde and Brendan Behan. My favourite quote of the evening was attributed to the rambunctious Behan. who described himself as a ‘drinker with a writing problem.’ We raised our glasses several…

  • waiting in Madrid

    Many people were surprised when I told them during my trip to Mallorca this February that I had never been to Spain before. Spain has always been a popular holiday destination for Irish people. But, there were no foreign holidays while I was growing up, apart from the rare trip to America. My family always looked West, not East. I’ve slowly been seeing more of Europe, but I never did the inter-railing thing during the summer off from college or the sojourn in France or Italy. It was always a race to the first flight to New York once exams were over so I could work in the city for…

  • never enough time

    This was taken on the metro in Stockholm, Sweden when I visited in April. It was night-time and we were heading back from the pub. This summarises for me the rather hectic pace of our life these days. We are always rushing somewhere, our minds on the clock, agendas and errands. It’s hard to leave that behind you on holiday. You’ve got to stuff those concerns into a left-baggage locker at a station, hop on a train and allow it to carry you far away from schedules, into the potential of night.

  • take a seat

    This is another image from my February trip to Mallorca. I snapped this in a tiny pebble beach in Santa Ponsa at dusk. Someone had set a plastic chair on the beach and left it there. Probably one of the locals or off-season residents, who would climb down the short set of wooden steps to enjoy the magnificent sunsets, even in Winter. There are many things I love about this image: the colours, the light, the contrast of the cheap and artificial with the natural and beautiful. But I also enjoy the sense of how you can project yourself into that seat, and how you can add details such as…

  • off with her head

    My trip to Mallorca earlier in the year provided me with opportunities to capture a number of cool or odd images. Some of you might remember my blog post called Gothic Sacraments, which had photographs from the astounding Chapel of the Holy Sacrament in the Catedral de Mallorca. One of the most impressive Gothic cathedrals I’ve ever visited. Another section of the Cathedral that fascinated me was the Chapel of Saint Jerome, which contained several paintings. A set of two were particularly striking. Here’s the bottom image: This is Saint Catherine of Alexandria, a famous Catholic martyr. In typical fashion she refused to recant her faith and was eventually decapitated…

  • time to stop drinking

    A rather Dalí-esque clock on the side of a pub in Dublin, snapped during my last visit. I’ve seen this before, but I took the time to stop and take a picture of it on this occasion. Often, the landscape/cityscape that surrounds us becomes so familiar we don’t really see it any more. Then, during temporary sunshine in between downpours, an old element becomes new again.

  • very important clothes

    This is a weirdly cool window display from Stockholm in Sweden. Yes, the jacket is decorated with plastic skeletons (the buttons are made of little skulls). Perhaps it’s a mad dictator’s formal wear. The little ferret under the bear lady’s chair is wearing a hat. We are surrounded by the odd all the time. Hurray, I say!

  • golden bag

    This window display in Brown Thomas in Dublin literally stopped me in my tracks and made me reach for my camera. It’s a pity about the window reflections, but it remains a stunning image. I realise they’re just flogging a bag, but this is a great way to do it. Of course, I didn’t buy it – that’s the Louis Vuitton window!

  • a busy period

    I’m coming into a busy couple of weeks and I’m unsure of how much time I’ll have to allocate to blogging. While there is a certain requirement these days for people to blog/tweet/etc. on a regular basis, it does impinge upon my allotted ‘free’ time. Over the coming two weeks that free time is shrinking considerably as a large project with a tight deadline just landed with a thud on my desk. I also have two active projects that are simmering, with one of them coming up to a whistling boil. So, here’s a photo I took in Stockholm, during my recent trip. It’s one of a series of murals…

  • Gothic sacraments

    This is an image from my visit to the Cathedral de Mallorca in Palma city in February. Technically, I was being rather naughty taking this image, but I couldn’t help it when it came to this startling section of the Cathedral, which is the Chapel of the Holy Sacrament. I have a thing for massive, elaborate Gothic churches. It goes back to my time studying art in school. We had a section called History of Art, which I loved, and that’s where I learned about Gothic architecture. The Cathedral in Palma has to be one of the most outstanding examples of Gothic cathedrals I’ve ever been in. In Spain the…