Taken at Florida Botanical Garden, Largo, using F8, 25 sec exposure, iso 50, 24mm focal length.
This office building is named The Gherkin. You can find it in London, UK. Its shape is most unusual. I loved the description of the building from an article in The Guardian so I am copying a small portion here – (fishnet stockings – remember those?)
The following is from the The Guardian article from May 5, 2014 by Oliver Wainwright. Here is the link – https://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/architecture-design-blog/2014/may/05/londons-top-10-towers
“Also likened to a pine cone, a bullet and a stubby cigar – and perhaps least like its knobbly pickled namesake – the Gherkin was a mischievous arrival to the City skyline in 2003. A lovable, chubby creature, it has stood the test of time, holding its own in an increasingly choked cluster. Wrapped with a diagrid structure that makes it look like it’s bulging out of a pair of fishnet stockings, its rounded form was justified for reasons of aerodynamics (might it lift off?) and internal ventilation.”
I submit the most photographed castle in Scotland for my Aged/Aging shot.
Eilean Donan Castle
Here is what I found out about this castle.
Eilean Donan is recognised as one of the most iconic images of Scotland all over the world. Situated on an island at the point where three great sea lochs meet, and surrounded by some majestic scenery, it is little wonder that the castle is now one of the most visited and important attractions in the Scottish Highlands.
Although first inhabited around the 6th century, the first fortified castle was built in the mid 13th century and stood guard over the lands of Kintail. Since then, at least four different versions of the castle have been built and re-built as the feudal history of Scotland unfolded through the centuries.
The name Eilean Donan, or island of Donan, is most probably called after the 6th century Irish Saint, Bishop Donan who came to Scotland around 580 AD.
The first fortified structure was not built on the island until the early 13th century as a defensive measure, protecting the lands of Kintail against the Vikings who raided, settled and controlled much of the North of Scotland and the Western Isles between 800 and 1266. From the mid 13th century, this area was the quite seperate “Sea Kingdom” of the Lord of the Isles where the sea was the main highway and the power of feuding clan chiefs was counted by the number of men and galleys or “birlinns” at their disposal. Eilean Donan offered the perfect defensive position.
Over the centuries, the castle itself has expanded and contracted in size. The medieval castle was probably the largest, with towers and a curtain wall that encompassed nearly the entire island. The main keep stood on the island’s highest point. Around the end of the 14th century the area of the castle was reduced to about a fifth of its original size and, although the reason is unclear, it probably relates to the number of men required to defend the structure. By the 16th century a hornwork was added to the east wall to offer a firing platform for the newly introduced cannons.
Eilean Donan also played a role in the Jacobite risings of the 17th and 18th centuries, which ultimately culminated in the castle’s destruction…
In 1719 the castle was garrisoned by 46 Spanish soldiers who were supporting the Jacobites. They had established a magazine of gunpowder, and were awaiting the delivery of weapons and cannon from Spain. The English Government caught wind of the intended uprising and sent three heavily armed frigates The Flamborough, The Worcester, and The Enterprise to quell matters. The bombardment of the castle lasted three days, though met with limited success due to the enormity of the castle walls, which in some places are up to 14 feet thick. Finally, Captain Herdman of The Enterprise sent his men ashore and over-whelmed the Spanish defenders. Following the surrender, the government troops discovered the magazine of 343 barrels of gunpowder which was then used to blow up what had remained from the bombardment…
For the best part of 200 years, the stark ruins of Eilean Donan lay neglected, abandoned and open to the elements, until Lt Colonel John Macrae-Gilstrap bought the island in 1911. Along with his Clerk of Works, Farquar Macrae, he dedicated the next 20 years of his life to the reconstruction of Eilean Donan, restoring her to her former glory. The castle was rebuilt according to the surviving ground plan of earlier phases and was formally completed in the July of 1932.
The view from where I stood looking up. This was taken underneath the chandelier at Glasglow’s Grand Central Hotel in Scotland.
At a cathedral in Scotland, there were some sheep. It was difficult to only get 8 to show up in the image, as they kept moving. I would count then compose and then there were 10. Re compose and now there were 5. I don’t know about counting sheep to get to sleep, but doing it for a photo is ridiculous. Look close you will see 8 sheep butts. Yes, they don’t face you. When you walk in their direction, they turn their backs to you.