Sketch Canal

Sketch Canal by Mauricio Alas
Sketch Canal a photo by Mauricio Alas.

Another interesting fact about the Venetian lagoon is not just that Venice is currently sinking, although that makes for some seriously good story telling. But the fact most of the other islands in the lagoon go largely ignored by visiting tourists.

Granted quite a few of them are private or out of bounds for anyone but locals or in cases like Lazzaretto Nuovo and Poveglia, where thousands of people have died there throughout history either through battle or plague, a special permit is required to even consider a tour of the ruins there.

Another thing to discuss are the prices, while a plate of sauced pasta is 14 Euros in Venice proper, you can easily get a plate of rabbit at Sant’Erasmo for 8 Euros. Why? Because it is not an island heavily visited by tourists and they are mostly known to be the fruit basket of Venice rather than for any renaissance art. The island is flat, and very agricultural and in fact while there, I only saw two other tourists who seemed more lost than exploring and next to no inhabitants. Although on a wonderful note, it was really fun to have a nice impromptu picnic near a small dock on  the south side of the island, away from the everyone else and looking into passing ships as they made their way into the Adriatic Sea.

Now, after a delicious mix of wine and local cheeses, I found myself in Murano, known throughout most of the last millennium (circa 1291) as a Mecca for glassmaking.
Interestingly enough, Murano is not famous by choice as all the glass makers were actually forcefully removed off Venice due to concerns of them setting the city aflame and relocated onto a less important island, you know, to set that on fire… and so in Murano, “Glass History” was made. Whether they had liked it or not.

Now the capture here was taken on Murano’s main street on a rainy day. Aside dozens of glass boutiques and stores catering to visitors and well-off Venetians, the main canal is also used as a social center and small market. The older man here, was selling fruit to residents and tourists alike. This of course is not something you would see in Venice, just 1.3km away; as it might offend the sensibilities of Venetians to be sold fruit directly off a boat in the Grand Canal but I was glad to see life here flow down more relaxed waters.

As he sold his wares, a painter had set up shop just west of him. As such,  this scene was just too good to pass by. The moody colour palette provided by the the gray cloudy sky adds a certain gravitas which personally I enjoy and if anything, makes this simple day-in-the-life capture a favourite of mine.

This photo was taken with a Nikon D700 and a 50mm at f1.8.



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