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User / andyrousephotography / Sets / Florence - 2015
Andy Rouse / 42 items

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Florence

The story...
I’ve been toying with the idea of creating an album titled “Icons”. Something to develop on an ad-hoc basic, as and when I think of them with no real pressure to complete it. The obvious items:- red telephone box, red pillar box, Big Ben, original Mini... the list keeps growing and changing. I’ve already found a Vespa scooter in Positano, which I quite like so that’s my starting point.

While sight-seeing in Florence I kept an eye out for an original Fiat 500 (not that I know much about them, but they must be the equivalent of the original mini in the UK). Didn’t spot a single model over the four days... went down the back streets away from the tourist routes (got lost several times), still nothing.

Sunday was our last day and we had planned to visit the Uffizi gallery as it’s free on the first Sunday of each month (little tourist tip there for you all). It absolutely lashed it down in the morning, and by the time we came out it was lunch time and still raining heavily, logic dictated we eat inside. By the time we had finished lunch we only had a couple of hours to kill before heading to the station for the trip back to Pisa and the airport. Just enough time to have one last walk around the Duomo... when Mrs R spotted this in a side street (Piazza del Capitolo) right next to the biggest tourist attraction in Florence... what a find!

The history...
The Fiat 500 (Italian: Cinquecento) was a city car produced by the Italian manufacturer Fiat between 1957 and 1975. Launched as the Nuova (new) 500 in July 1957, it was a cheap and practical town car. Measuring only 2.97m (9 feet 9 inches) long, and originally powered by an appropriately sized 479 cc two-cylinder, air-cooled engine, the 500 redefined the term "small car" and is considered one of the first city cars.

To meet the demands of the post-war market which called for economy cars, in 1949 a front engine Fiat 500 was released. It had a 2-door coupe body with sun-roof, which was later complemented by an Estate (Station Wagon) version. Both continued until 1954 when they were replaced by an all new, lighter car. The new car had a rear-mounted engine, on the pattern of the Volkswagen Beetle, just like its bigger brother the 1955 Fiat 600. Several car makers followed the now uncommon rear engine configuration at the time and were quite successful. The Neckar version of the 500 was manufactured in Heilbronn under a complicated deal involving NSU, and was introduced in October 1961. Steyr-Puch produced cars based on the Fiat 500 under license in Upper Austria.

Despite its diminutive size, the 500 proved to be an enormously practical and popular vehicle throughout Europe. Besides the two-door coupé, it was also available as the "Giardiniera" station wagon; this variant featured the standard engine laid on its side, the wheelbase lengthened by 10 cm (3.9 in) to provide a more convenient rear seat, a full-length sunroof, and larger brakes from the Fiat 600.

Production of the 500 ended in 1975, although its replacement, the Fiat 126, was launched two years earlier. The 126 was never as popular as its predecessor in Italy, but was enormously popular in the former Eastern Bloc countries, where it is famed for its mechanical durability and high fuel economy.

In 2007, the 50th anniversary of the Nuova 500's launch, Fiat launched another new 500, stylistically inspired by the 1957 Nuova 500 but considerably heavier and larger, featuring a front-mounted engine and front-wheel drive.

Tags:   Fiat 500 Cinquecento car icon small Italian classic red Andy Rouse Canon 5D 5D3 MkIII

N 53 B 3.3K C 11 E Oct 4, 2015 F Jan 22, 2016
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Ponte Vecchio, Florence

A fellow Flickr photographer Mark Waidson was in Florence the week before me and has posted some excellent images including a shot of the Vasari Corridor from the corner of the Ponte Vecchio, which we have produced near identical images. We have swapped images over the preceding months and I particularly liked his “First Light” image of the Ponte Vecchio with the early morning pink skies. I was reviewing my own and came across this version.

I’ve called it First Light II in homage to yours Mark... hope you don’t mind.

Tags:   Florence Ponte Vecchio bridge River Arno historic street shops jewellers Renaissance dark dawn morning low light water reflections exposure long exposure Andy Rouse Canon 5D 5D3 MkIII

N 26 B 2.8K C 7 E Oct 4, 2015 F Oct 27, 2015
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Vasari Corridor, Florence

The Vasari Corridor (Italian: Corridoio Vasariano) is an elevated enclosed passageway in Florence, which connects the Palazzo Vecchio with the Palazzo Pitti. Beginning on the south side of the Palazzo Vecchio, it then joins the Uffizi Gallery and leaves on its south side, crossing the Lungarno dei Archibusieri and then following the north bank of the River Arno until it crosses the Ponte Vecchio. At the time of construction the Torre dei Mannelli had to be built around using brackets because the owners of the tower refused to alter it. The corridor covers up part of the façade of the Chiesa di Santa Felicita. The corridor then snakes its way over rows of houses in the Oltrarno district, becoming narrower, to finally join the Palazzo Pitti.

Most of it is closed to visitors.

Footnote:
For the Manchester crew... you know who you are!
It's an ok shot but I think its lacking a couple of red phone boxes!!!

Tags:   Florence Ponte Vecchio bridge Vasari corridor passageway secret Palazzo Vecchio Palazzo Pitti Uffizi connected River Arno Andy Rouse Canon 5D 5D3 MkIII

N 29 B 3.9K C 7 E Oct 4, 2015 F Oct 10, 2015
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Florence

The Basilica di Santa Croce (Basilica of the Holy Cross) is the principal Franciscan church in Florence and a minor basilica of the Roman Catholic Church. It is situated on the Piazza di Santa Croce, about 800 metres south-east of the Duomo.

The Basilica is the largest Franciscan church in the world. Its most notable features are its sixteen chapels, many of them decorated with frescoes by Giotto and his pupils, and its tombs and cenotaphs. Legend says that Santa Croce was founded by St Francis himself. The construction of the current church, to replace an older building, was begun on 12 May 1294, possibly by Arnolfo di Cambio, and paid for by some of the city's wealthiest families. It was consecrated in 1442 by Pope Eugene IV. The building's design reflects the austere approach of the Franciscans. The floor plan is an Egyptian or Tau cross (a symbol of St Francis), 115 metres in length with a nave and two aisles separated by lines of octagonal columns. To the south of the church was a convent, some of whose buildings remain. The neo-Gothic marble façade, as shown in the image, is by Nicolò Matas and dates from 1857-1863.

The Primo Chiostro, the main cloister, houses the Cappella dei Pazzi, built as the chapter house, completed in the 1470s. Filippo Brunelleschi (who had designed and executed the dome of the Duomo) was involved in its design which has remained rigorously simple and unadorned. In 1560, the choir screen was removed as part of changes arising from the Counter-Reformation and the interior rebuilt by Giorgio Vasari. As a result, there was damage to the church's decoration and most of the altars previously located on the screen were lost.

Santa Croce is also the burial place of some of the most illustrious Italians, such as Michelangelo, Galileo, Machiavelli, Foscolo, Gentile and Rossini, thus it is known also as the Temple of the Italian Glories (Tempio dell'Itale Glorie).

Footnote to previous image:
Still didn’t manage to capture a people free shot... during the entire shoot, a street cleaning van slowly worked across the church jet washing the steps. You can see the van on the left and the faint orange ghost of the cleaner in his visi-vest.

Tags:   Florence Santa Croce Basilica church Roman Catholic historic dawn blue hour Renaissance Andy Rouse Canon 5D 5D3 MkIII

N 27 B 1.7K C 16 E Oct 4, 2015 F Oct 10, 2015
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Florence

Last morning of our city break I was determined to capture an early shot of Santa Croce as it is impossible to get a people free shot during the day. Although Florence is compact it is easy to get lost in the side streets with no visible landmark to navigate by so I decided to stick with the major streets of the three main bridges. The middle bridge is the Ponte Vecchio and I managed to grab this quick shot of all the closed jeweller shops on route to Santa Croce.

For such an historic landmark full of history it was a little disappointing to see modern steel roller doors on some of the shops... I much prefer the old wrought iron and wooden doors seen on the right of the shot.

Tags:   Florence Ponte Vecchio bridge River Arno historic street shops jewellers dawn Renaissance Andy Rouse Canon 5D 5D3 MkIII


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