The first day of our trip to Israel took us to the holy sites at North Shore of the Sea of Galilee. A first opportunity to take out the Leica and capture some vacation memories. Classic travel photography, so to speak. Being part of a tour group, the day and the evening are fully packed. So I decided to just dump the memory card onto the Macbook and share some out-of-camera jpgs captured with the Leica’s high-contrast monochrome program for a first episode of Israel explored – Sea of Galilee….
After starting off with a morning boat ride on the Sea of Galilee, we first visited the Mount of Beatitude, where Jesus is believed to have delivered the Sermon on the Mount. The sanctuary is situated on the northeastern shore of the lake, on a hill that has an altitude of 25m below seal level, making it one of the lowest summits of the world. The surface of the Sea of Galilee is actually 255m below sea level, making it one of the deepest places on the planet.
At the sanctuary we got a first glimpse of the many pilgrim groups from all over the world that are visiting the Holy Land.
Next we went down to Tabgha. The site with two churches down at the Shore of the Sea of Galilee, was the setting to two major miracles of Jesus. First was the feeding of the multitude, where Jesus fed five thousand people with five loaves of bread and two fish. Then, the rocks at the shore are considered to be the place where Jesus appeared the fourth time after his resurrection, during which he conferred primacy on Peter.
Holy Mass for pilgrims under olive trees
Last on the list of Holy Places we visited today was Capernaum. The ancient fishing village at the shore of the Sea of Galilee is believed to have been the home of Saint Peter. Visible below a modern church are the foundations of his house. Graffitis left behind by pilgrims from the first four centuries pretty much assure that the house was indeed belonging to Saint Peter.
The photograph above shows the ruins of a synagogue dating back to the fourth century. Beneath the foundation of this synagogue lies another foundation made of basalt (the building material used in the village at the time of Jesus). It is believed that this is the foundation of a synagogue from the 1st century, perhaps the one mentioned in the gospels where Jesus has preached, making it the oldest found synagogue in the world.
If you wonder why this post is B&W only, this is quite simple to explain. First, the light was insanely bright and all colors pretty much mute. Best thing you can do in this kind of conditions (and when you are part of a tour group and can’t return for the perfect light at the golden hour) is shoot black & white and focus on contrast, shapes and textures. The other thing is that the monochrome jpgs from the Leica can be used straight out of camera, no post processing is required. Which makes it possible to crank out a post on the day of our trip to the Sea of Galilee, despite the full program.
All Images taken with the with the Leica SL2-S and the Vario-Elmarit-SL 1:2.8/24-70 ASPH
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Have a great Tuesday