Unlike many British people, I love olives and, when we came across this stall on market day in the Plaza del Mercado in Port de Pollença, I was in Heaven. Every type of olive you could wish for - black ones, green ones, ones stuffed with pimento peppers, others with garlic cloves, anchovies or onion - fabulous!
The cultivation of olives and the production of olive oil have deep roots in the history of Spain. The olive, a symbol of peace, and the tree which produces olives (Olea Europea) are known to have been cultivated around the Mediterranean about 6000 years ago. Its origin could be the eastern Mediterranean, but most probably it originated in Greece. Stone tablets found dating back to 2500 BC from the court of King Minos of Crete make reference to this plant.
The olive tree was brought to the Iberian Peninsula by the Phoenicians and the Greeks. Olive cultivation was expanded considerably by the Romans, who also improved the techniques of oil production. Olive oil from Hispania was highly regarded by the inhabitants of Old Rome, as well as by the rest of the Roman Empire, that considered it of superior quality.
Later, the Arabs continued perfecting the technique of olive oil production. The importance of the Arab influence is evident by the fact that the Spanish word for oil - aceite - comes from the Arabic - al-zat - for olive juice. As a result of a stable, thousand-year-old tradition, today Spain is the major producer and exporter of olive oil in the World.
Nevertheless, until a few years ago, Spanish olive oil was relatively unknown since almost all of it was sold by bulk and packaged outside the country. Today, gradually, oil producers, and especially those of the best quality oil, are packaging and placing their own names on the bottles, just as the producers of California wine are now selling more and more of their wine as their own product instead of selling the grapes. This is increasing considerably the knowledge and admiration for Spanish olive oil as an exceptional product.
Olive oil is good for you too: through its oleic acid, it helps to reduce the level of "bad" cholesterol and increase the level of "good" cholesterol; it has a high contribution of Vitamin E which protects against arteriosclerosis; and helps to reduce blood pressure, thereby helping to reduce the incidence of thrombosis.
Critiques | Translate
SnapRJW (23678) 2012-09-23 4:55
Hello John - We also love olives and even our 5 year old grandson eats them like sweets! We picked up a super recipe in Turkey for combining olives, lemon zest and juice, garlic and rosemary and letting them steep together for a while. Delicious. These you present here look so big and juicy and very tempting. A lovely daily life shot of a way of life that eschews the supermarket for a traditional market, what a pleasure to buy goods like this. Wonderful colours and areas of dappled sunlight, a shot with a lovely summery feel. Warm regards rosemary
luckys (124) 2012-09-23 5:21
Hello John.Excellent shot,i love olives,would like to be theare.Bravo!!!
mjw364 (6142) 2012-09-23 5:56
Like you I LOVE olives! I also love the way you have used the bowls of olives as a leading line into this shot. This depth and line is added to by the line of supporting poles that hold the roof up and the line of sellers who carry your eye right through the shot.
The contrast between the green olives and the blue material acting as a shade really makes this a visually strong shot too.
Also, the social interaction is well captured adding to the "story" of the shot.
I took more images of Cemaes bay whilst away, I just have to work my way through the hundreds I took to process and select and I will upload to trigger your memory banks as soon as I get around to it.
Take care - have a great day
CLODO (26462) 2012-09-23 7:58
Bargaining for the price of olives? Good market shot well enhanced by the human presence, as if they don't notice you with a superb perspective of the olives baskets.
saxo042 (33930) 2012-09-23 9:04
We also love olives and i also enjoy your very interesting note here. The photo is very good with the diagonal line of olives. An abundance of colours!
bayno (18334) 2012-09-24 6:30
very strong resemblance to the Italian markets, I think you've done a great job here in PP for the management of light and clarity of details even in the shadows, I really like the theme, the colors are vibrant and excellent sharp, but for the production of olive oil I think that we have not rivals in the world....
very good work...
Glint (5911) 2012-09-24 9:17
I love olives too. Especially black olives unpitted.(The stones have plenty of flavour too -I suck them!).
This is an appealing image.I like the compo, on a diagonal. Mostly though I like the olives, nice and sharp and colourful and good enough to eat.Excellent excerpt from daily life.
kathryn_weir (1746) 2012-09-24 11:01
Thank you for your wonderfully informative notes and expert health advice espousing the positive benefits of olives :)
Your photo has a great summer feel made even warmer by the smiles and relaxed stance of the shoppers. Your perfect depth of field has given great sharpness and the olives look like we could reach out and grab one from those delightful terracotta urns. The dappled sunlight and gentle shadow has added a really lovely patchwork feel. My husband has re-discovered olives since moving to the UK-and travelling to Greece on business- I shall have to show him this shot. Maybe it will convince him we should visit Spain together :)
Thanks for sharing
Silvio1953 (105553) 2012-09-25 3:19
Ciao John, lovely daily life composition, nice scene at market, wonderful colors, excellent perspective and splendid light, very well done, my friend, ciao Silvio
delpeoples (48654) 2012-09-25 4:07
This photo is making my mouth water. I'm so glad to hear that a Briton likes olives, you really are in the minority. It took me several years to "convert"Le Petomane too. What wonderful lively colours and a dazzling, dynamic situation you've captured. Excellent vertical frame, impressive sharpness and I like the dappled light from the netting overhead. The play of light and shade is really attractive and so summery. Thanks for sharing.
Great shot, have a beautiful day
amaryllis (32065) 2012-09-27 8:13
un superbe étal de ces olives vertes et noires, la présence de ces clientes donnent un plus et j'aime bien la posture de la vendeuse
une belle lumière, de belles ombres également
merci de ce partage
agjika (4309) 2012-10-01 10:56
My mouth is watering looking at this olive stand. I love olives. I bet they were cheaper than here!
Thanks for sharing
holmertz (31322) 2012-10-08 10:33
I have been away from TE for just a fortnight and yet I feel so far behind. Looking at your recent photos I couldn't resist this for its splashes of colours and mouthwatering theme. I just returned from Turkey where various kinds of olives are an essential part of every breakfast buffet. The light was difficult here but you (or your camera) handled the problems very well. This is really such a nice picture with a beautiful diagonal of olives and great texture of the wooden poles and the blue canvas roof.
thebest (4116) 2012-10-14 17:50
How I love Olives - My husband & I visited a manufacturer of Olive oil in Argentina they have their own Olive groves & I believe they produce around 70 tonnes per year.
This is a very interesting & colourful photo - excellent clarity & taken on a beautiful day.
I love it.
- Copyright: John Cannon (tyro) (15717)
- Genre: Places
- Medium: Color
- Date Taken: 2012-09-05
- Categories: Daily Life, Food, Decisive Moment
- Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark II, Canon 24-70mm f/2.8L USM, Hoya 77mm Pro1D UV(0)
- Exposure: f/14.0, 1/125 seconds
- More Photo Info: view
- Map: view
- Photo Version: Original Version
- Date Submitted: 2012-09-23 4:34