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The Photography Blog from Beastmaster.co.uk


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Venice For The Carnevale February 2015

Carnival MaskOk so Wikipedia is my friend but it does explain the Carnevale in Venice:

The Carnival of Venice (Italian: Carnevale di Venezia) is an annual festival, held in Venice, Italy. The Carnival ends with the Christian celebration of Lent, forty days before Easter on Shrove Tuesday (Pancake Tuesday or Mardi Gras), the day before Ash Wednesday. The festival is famed for its elaborate masks.

It is said that the Carnival of Venice was started from a victory of the “Serenissima Repubblica” against the Patriarch of Aquileia, Ulrico di Treven in the year 1162. In the honor of this victory, the people started to dance and make reunions in San Marco Square. Apparently, this festival started on that period and became official in the Renaissance. In the seventeenth century, the baroque carnival was a way to save the prestigious image of Venice in the world. It was very famous during the eighteenth century. It encouraged licence and pleasure, but it was also used to protect Venetians against the anguish for present time and future. However, under the rule of the King of Austria, the festival was outlawed entirely in 1797 and the use of masks became strictly forbidden. It reappeared gradually in the nineteenth century, but only for short periods and above all for private feasts, where it became an occasion for artistic creations.

After a long absence, the Carnival returned to operate in 1979.The Italian government decided to bring back the history and culture of Venice, and sought to use the traditional Carnival as the centerpiece of its efforts. The redevelopment of the masks began as the pursuit of some Venetian college students for the tourist trade. Today, approximately 3 million visitors come to Venice every year for the Carnival. One of the most important events is the contest for la maschera più bella (“the most beautiful mask”) placed at the last weekend of the Carnival and judged by a panel of international costume and fashion designers. Continue reading

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Venice In February – The Photography Mission

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We had a recent holiday break in Venice for the Carnevale and to enjoy St Valentine’s day together and you can see our holiday photographs for this here. We also took a collection of photographs of people celebrating the Carnevale and these can be seen here. We were sold on going to Venice in February by our good friend and keen photographer Andy Williams, who explained how the people dressing up for the Carnevale would happily pose for photographs etc. He suggested we get up before breakfast as the models are around then and you can photograph them without all the tourist being around. Continue reading


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Venice In February

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We had dinner with an old friend of ours Andy Williams sometime this winter before Christmas and we were telling him of our love for Venice and our recent adventures there. He mentioned that The Carnevale was on in February and  to cut a long story short he inspired us to go there. We looked at this and then found out that it fell over Valentine’s Day so that was it, we were hooked and the trip was booked. We went for Hotel Ambassador Tre Rose which is just off St Mark’s Square and right in the thick of the action and for once we decided to fly.

We overnighted at my cousin Lorraine’s in Ashtead from where we booked a taxi to catch an early flight on Wednesday morning. I don’t like flying, not because I hate flying as I love that part, but I don’t like the whole airport experience anymore. Too much queuing and The Easy Jet model discourages hold luggage. Anyway Gatwick was fine and in truth we got through very quickly and were able to enjoy a mooch around the expensive shops post passport control.

At Venice airport we had a long walk to the water buses where we soon boarded one  that meandered its way to St Mark’s square  and by about 2 pm we were unpacking in our centrally placed but frankly small bedroom. I learned to love this room though as it was very warm and cosy and to be honest I feel that any city break demands a centrally placed hotel and tin truth it doesn’t get more central than the Tre Rose! Continue reading