This is not a particularly good shot I know, but I thought it was sufficiently interesting to warrant a main post. It is the interior of the most important church in Costa Rica, the Basilica de Nuestra Senora de los Angeles (Cathedral of our Lady of the Angels) I hand–held the camera and at 1/3 of a second there is inevitably some motion blur.
According to legend, in 1635, a figurine of a dark-skinned Virgin Mary (La Negrita) was found on the rock on which the Basilica is built. It became important as a Holy shrine when the figurine kept mysteriously returning to the rock. The Basilica was built on the site and the 20cm figurine is kept in a gold and be-jewelled shrine above the main altar. (See WS)
Every August 2nd the La Negrita Pilgrimage to the basilica is made by devout Costa Ricans. Many walk the 15 miles from San Jose; some crawl on their knees, while others carry crosses. They touch the rock on which the figurine was found and collect Holy water from the underground spring which is thought to have curative powers. At the annual pilgrimage the La Negrita figurine is removed from the shrine to be paraded around the city.
At the time of our visit there was a service taking place and some of the people entering the Basilica finished their journey by going down the aisle on their knees. I’m guessing that they were making individual pilgrimages to visit the shrine of La Negrita and obtain help with an illness. They will no doubt complete their visit by collecting water from the spring. If you follow this link you will see the nearest man on his knees here, putting the Holy spring water on his chest – I didn’t follow him – I only noticed while processing the photos.
Edit Marco (colibri) has added a WS of the altar.
Critiques | Translate
rhizomes (15343) 2007-02-22 12:29
Interesting picture showing the inside of the basilic. I like the golden colors and the prayers...
jwmunro (286) 2007-02-22 12:35
Hello Kath -
A very nice image for low light and hand held. I think the blur you see are the penitents moving and not you so much. Exposure looks to be right on the money.
The crawling on the knees is a common practice in Central and South American catholic churches. You should see the penitents in Mexico City, they will crawl across the plaza, up the steps, and down the center aisle of the basilica. Bloody knees are quit common.
Thanks for sharing
bostankorkulugu (42430) 2007-02-22 12:38
they remind me of the crawling women in tinos, greece, up to the monastery of panagia evangelistria from the port... nice dof, beautiful light control and a great note to go along with it... cheers kath :)
besnard (56385) 2007-02-22 12:44
Très bien saisi cet intérieur d'église richement décoré. On sent toute la ferveur des participants.
Merci pour le partage et bonne soirée.
jaywalker (16101) 2007-02-22 12:48
Hi Kath, Great photo with fantastic depth & superb focus, the inside of this basilica looks truly beautiful, you have captured perfect light & magnificent architecture, kind regards Wilson.
gilou530 (34) 2007-02-22 12:48
grosse profondeur de champs de cette cathédrale, avec une perspective centrale des plus belles, les personnages priants font de cette photo, une belle scène de vie
syd1946 (18663) 2007-02-22 12:49
Interesting composition taking from a good point to enjoy the whole scene inside this beautiful Church.Well handled of colors also adding to the result you show us here with your informative note as usual.
riclopes (35577) 2007-02-22 13:43
I disagree with you Kath: This is a great shot. I was hopping to see this interior and here it is. It's quite an impressive architecture and really diferent from what we are used to see in Europe. Love the decoration. In a way makes me remind a raillway station, because of the structure. Excellent capture of the atmosphere with the pilgrimes on their knees. I really like it, Kath!
jan515 (545) 2007-02-22 14:55
Beautiful scenery Kath,
I like such pictures. Large composition thanks to you. Good light and colors on the photo.
nels (2623) 2007-02-22 15:22
hi kath,, amazing sharpness for a hand held shot excellent dof ahowing us the alter your new nikon is performing very well
peter1892 (1681) 2007-02-22 16:29
Hi Kath - actually it is quite a good shot in my opinion! The human element is excellent, the act of pilgrimage with people on their knees like this, it's a sight that's quite interesting. I also like the repetition of the pillars & arches inside the church. As pointed out by others, it's a great result for a handheld indoor shot (with a long exposure too!).
cobbydale (1958) 2007-02-22 16:39
It's a good shot - good POV and plenty of detail to look at. I like the golden arches in the church. I think maybe cropping a couple of centimeters off the bottom would be an improvement but as others have said, it is a good shot.
PS have been working away all week, so just catching up on TE :-)
JCG (35129) 2007-02-22 17:04
The beliefs are really enthusiastic in these areas, this photograph of it is the proof. I like very much this framing which gives much of depth to the image. An great management of the lights, it is very pleasant. An interesting photograph which learns to us much, thank you Kath for the comment.
With my all friendships,
tcht (7565) 2007-02-22 17:07
Not bad shot at all, the motion blur is very effective. Not often do we see church images with people inside praying...I like the gentle swaying of the old man. The perpsective is good and technical quality is fine. Nice documentary from this interesting place.
coco (30439) 2007-02-22 17:38
Not only the photo can show us perfectly the architecture of this church, also we can see how this people pray.
The photo talks about the faith of this country and does in a nice way.
(the note reminds me a similar story in Barcelona and a Virgin called Montserrat, also dark-skinned).
Didi (60588) 2007-02-22 21:33
The inside decoration church is more rich than French ones.
Very nice point of view to appreciate the architecture.
Graal (102858) 2007-02-23 2:46
interesting interior of church, beautiful architecture. Good vertical composition and quality of photo. I like it.
delkoo (68) 2007-02-23 4:40
very nice interior photo of chuch, the depth is well managed as well as the balanced light,the pilgrimes on their knees add a touch of spirituality.
John_F_Kennedy (43665) 2007-02-23 7:15
Gorgeous view! Great capture here the colours and the atmosphere. Good note.
leonorkuhn (16235) 2007-02-23 9:03
Very good view of the church inside. Good capture of the people walking on the knees as a good demonstration of faith and devotion. Great sharpness and perfect light.
chrisnet (22978) 2007-02-23 10:26
You have well captured this interior s'church, good light and perspective, I like the golden colors and the prayers too. Good work.
Paolo (41222) 2007-02-23 10:52
Hi Kath, excellent image, with good quality and exposure, that give a dynamism thanks to the the praying man on the middle.
the POV was perfect.
eza1701 (3345) 2007-02-23 11:06
I disagree with you about it not being a particularly good shot, as I think it is and presents the magnificent architecture of the building really well. The people nearest to you are a bit blurred but I don't think it detracts from the image at all. Great note as usual.
agbonavita (0) 2007-02-23 11:17
Hi Kath, thanks for post the inside view. I love church from out and inside. The floor drwas are very interstins as well as the architecture.
I like the family in the middle in their peregrination on knees.
good exposition. Maybe a little inclinated to the left.
carper (96) 2007-02-23 11:28
well kath I like the moving effect in the shot,\very nice pov and good perspective, goodn details and a fine photo job, well done, have a nice weekend.
lukie (0) 2007-02-23 13:05
it's not bad at all for an inside shot...
have a nice weekend,
sabyasachi1212 (19779) 2007-02-23 13:45
Its not about the motion blur on the persons kneeling (they were obviously on the move) but I am amazed with the sharpness you have achieved elsewhere despite a 1/3 sec hand held shot. Excellent details. Somehow it gives a felling of 'being there'.
With Greetings from India
devimeuxbe (58557) 2007-02-23 16:01
This is a beautifull picture in the church. The light is nice. It's nice to get poeple praying. Most of the picture in the churches are without persons.
danos (97783) 2007-02-23 16:45
Very good view of the church inside,with vivid colours and light control.I like the repetition of the pillars & arches on the dome of the church.Excellent the capture of the atmosphere and the contrition of the staunchs.Well done.
stego (24132) 2007-02-23 17:32
You must be a perfectionist! Why do you say that it isn't very good? Considering the light situation and not having used a tripod, I think it's amazingly well.
The motion blur shows that they are moving and the overall sharpness is good enough. Your pov is careful and shows the interior very nicely.
UlfE (14641) 2007-02-24 5:38
A magnificent shot with perfect symmetry and also very vivid with all the praying people on their knees. I could see that the lighting conditions were not perfect with very strong light coming in from windows in the ceiling. It is always very difficult to handle. The result would have probably have been better with other light conditions, but on the other hand all the pilgrims would perhaps not have been there. Taking into account the lighting condition I think you have done a superb job here. It is definitively your best picture from Costa Rica so far. Have a nice week-end!
plimrn (21344) 2007-02-24 8:36
Again you give a very real sense of being there; This post IS primary because it gives us the whole picture: The soaring arches gleaming with light, the golden shrine, the hopeful pilgrims and those ever-present tile floors. The details of the pilgrims at the spring and the shrine are indeed complementary to the photo. You've conveyed well the sense of hope, which is really what churches are all about. HLJ, Pat
mortijo (12828) 2007-02-24 10:26
Excellent photo. I like the colors and, especially, the note.
john_c (24666) 2007-02-24 10:46
There is much for the eye to absorb in this scene, where you capture not only the penitents but also the splendid artwork of the interior. I agree with John Munro's comment about the motion blur - and indeed until I read your note I thought it was even intentional! The exposure level seems just right and your POV highlights the symmetry to left and right. Well done.
mickyg (815) 2007-02-25 16:00
Interesting capture although a slightly faster shutter speed would have stopped the man blurring as he moved .. colorful and sharp with the pews adding fine lead in lines for the viewer
Stepan (27210) 2007-02-27 17:19
Faith is strong here... The mood is well captured and shared, with a good dof. Good light management too.
Angshu (56758) 2007-02-28 4:11
Superb shot of the interiors...hand held or with the help of your improvised tripod? Love the sombre colours here as also the motion blur which is very effective. The architecture is so different, as Ricardo has said like a Railway station. Lovely symmetry & deep DOF
paura (47186) 2007-02-28 18:02
The composition and lighting are really nice here. Very beautiful the architecture details.
colibri (294) 2007-03-03 1:13
Pura vida Kath!
This picture is exelent I like the clarity of it all.
I apreciate your coment to riclopes that you didn't want to intrude in church.
I had a picture of the altar I loaded it on your workshop I hope you dont mind.
Emile (20352) 2007-03-05 15:34
Very nice shot of the basilica, good colors and lighting, love the way you captured the prayers and the repetition of the arcs with nice colors and sharpness. Good depth and compo. Good note.
kmarscher (2887) 2007-03-15 14:09
Nicely said and done. It reflects the life of the faithful. Very touching.
- Copyright: Kath Featherstone (feather) (51130)
- Genre: Places
- Medium: Color
- Date Taken: 2007-01-29
- Categories: Daily Life, Architecture
- Camera: Nikon D200, Nikkor 24-120mm AF-S, VR, RAW
- Exposure: f/3.5, 1/3 seconds
- Photo Version: Original Version, Workshop
- Travelogue: Costa Rica 2007
- Date Submitted: 2007-02-22 12:08