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Photographer's Note

Odile is the evil reflection of Odette in Tchaikovsky's Swan Lake. The title refers to that character instead of the good one, because of its dark mood. The photo was made after sunset, almost in darkness, also under a heavy December 31st sky. Thanks to f4, ISO 800 and 1 sec. exposure, the lighting is a bit weird. The clouds reflected the city lights in a pinkish haze. The yellowish tones were obtained by warm white balance.

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For most visitors the Minnewater and its lovely park are the entrance to the beautiful city of Bruges. The Minnewater is a canalized lake. From the bridge (1740) one can already enjoy a nice panoramic view over the town. Because of the idyllic surroundings it is mostly referred to as 'the lake of Love', the Dutch word 'Minne' meaning 'love'.

Actually, the origins of the lake are less romantic. It was here that the coastal river 'Reie' entered the city. The river was later canalized and made to continue until the center of town. It is not sure where the name 'Minnewater' comes from. An explanation could be 'water van het gemeen', which could be translated as the 'common water'. The lake was used as a water reservoir, to keep the water of the canals at a constant level. Next to the lake is the Minnewater park, where sometimes in the summertime (rock) concerts are organized.

One of the symbols of Bruges is the swan. There are always plenty of them on the 'Minnewater'. There exists a nice legend about the swans of Bruges. In 1488 the people of Bruges had executed one of the town administrators belonging to the court of Maximilian of Austria, husband and successor of duchess Mary of Burgundy. The town administrator was called 'Pieter Lanchals', a name which means ' long neck'. The Lanchals family coat of arms featured a white swan. Legend has it that Maximilian punished Bruges by obliging the population to keep swans on their lakes and canals till eternity. Most of these legends and romantic interpretations come from the 19th century. Believe them or not : the beautiful 'Minnewater' deserves them.

Photo Information
Viewed: 1915
Points: 28
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Additional Photos by Deniz Taskin (rigoletto) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3083 W: 399 N: 6739] (34109)
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