Don’t you just love it when they slap a KFC sign on beautiful Baroque façades like this? Perhaps the next initiative of the Council here will to be remove the cross on the silver cupola to make way for some golden arches.
This is picturesque Piaţa Sfatului (which translated has the somewhat more inelegant name of ‘Council Square’) in the centre of Braşov, which my Lonely Planet guidebook tells me was “where witches were once burned and prisoners tortured in the Council House”.
My guidebook also mentioned that the setting sun puts a golden hue on Braşov, so I timed my arrival in Braşov for the late afternoon, and was rewarded with this lovely warm light on the beautiful medieval buildings around the square.
Founded by the Teutonic Knights in 1211, Braşov, in central Romania, has been known by many names through the ages including Corona, Brasco, Brasso, Stephanopolis and Kronstadt, and has some of the best preserved buildings from the late Middle Ages of any city in Europe.
Wikipedia describes Braşov as the ‘capital’ of Transylvania and “possessing an almost Disney-esque charm” – a description with which I have to agree, at least as far as the old Germanic town in the middle of the city is concerned. The rest of Braşov is a sprawling industrial city with not-too-many and not-too-clear roadsigns which resulted in me driving around in circles trying to find the highway north to Sighişoara. I ended up on the Sfântu Gheorghe highway instead, so had to cut across country through Hărman and Bod to join the Sighişoara highway. This turned out to be a delightful drive, through old Saxon villages where the main mode of transport is horse and cart. You feel like you have gone back hundreds of years in time, so the difficulty I had in finding my way out of Braşov turned out to be an opportunity to see a part of rural Romania that few travelers seem to visit.
PP: The foreground of this shot was in heavy shadow and the people were virtually black silhouettes. I lightened the shadows a little in Photoshop, but not too much as I wanted to avoid having too much detail in the foreground which would take the eye away from the colourful façades of the buildings. I guess some will say I should have left the people as silhouettes, others may say I should have brought out more detail from the shadows – I tried to find a compromise that I was comfortable with.
Critiques | Translate
Paolo (41222) 2007-05-21 9:57
Hi David, good view, colorful and full of light, with a good quality and a good POV to see many buildings and a large part of the square.
cessy (13647) 2007-05-21 10:13
I think you managed to get good compromise of the shadow on the foreground. The combination of shadow and light here, made the picture not flat, three dimentional.
About the KFC sign .. yes sometimes it spoils the view like this beautiful Baroque façades. but once a while, I relieved to see this familiar sign in a strange place in a country - where I could not understand the language at all.
isabela_sor (47722) 2007-05-21 10:33
A beautiful square so well captured in this pic!!I have all the time the same problems with the light when I'm trying to shoot there.Later I will post one WS (a pic taken in the same place 3 weeks ago :))
I hope you liked my country
A very nice week
AleGaro (269) 2007-05-21 10:33
nice photo of an unknown place to me. Good exposition on the buildings so that the persons in the foreground are in the shadows and do not distract the view.
Buin (42330) 2007-05-21 11:09
A colourful and vivid photo with very interesting and beautiful buildings! You caught it in a wonderful light. The dark foreground emphasizes the scenery in a skillful way. I as astonished about the word German "Altstadt" at one of the houses, but your note explains it. In German this region is called "Siebenbürgen".
Greetings from Germany!
photo_radoo (265) 2007-05-21 12:08
Such a beautiful clarity of the image and its colors! Good POW and contrast too.
ben4321 (9875) 2007-05-21 12:58
It's a colourful and well composed shot of this interesting looking place, and I think you struck the right balance with the darkness of the foreground. Talking of the foreground, I do think the image would be improved with something in it, don't really know what, just 'something'.
Other than that, this is very well executed.
I remember on my first trip to Eastern Europe in the early nineties there were no American fast food places, at least I don't remember any. Nowadays you have to go further and further afield to escape them. Still, the sign isn't really that intrusive here.
pboehringer (770) 2007-05-21 17:17
David, usually I have a pretty good eye to see such idiosynchrasies as KFC on such a place. However, it took me a while to spot it and just because you mentioned it. Gosh, I wish you wouldn't have done it! It is a marvelous place. The colors are so beautiful against this blue sky and you were able to document the happy life going on there, despite it being on the dark side. Good balanced light conditions. And ... yes I have to agree the golden Double Arches would be a good add to the tower. Let's remove the cross. It seems to be outdated. Hail globalization and commercialism.
asajernigan (21330) 2007-05-21 19:58
Nice composition with good contrast between sun and shadow. The lighting and colors are great with good sharpness and detail. Nice capture of the architecture with the added human element.
vincz (19113) 2007-05-22 3:32
Beautiful image, very well contrated. deep blue sky over thiese colourful facdes works reall well. Good PP as well, not excessive just enough to get out som deails not too much.
delkoo (68) 2007-05-22 6:51
Effectively light is very beautiful and lit this charming facade, as you say god compromise of light and shadow.
teutza (10590) 2007-05-22 10:16
hope u had a great time in Romania, i like how you cought this beautiful spot in Brasov!:)
krakowiak (4762) 2007-05-24 4:30
This square in Brasov in amazingly beautyful, but ver well managed composition and exepctional light on your photos gives to it an extra glance! Brilliant colours of the sky and buildings!!!!
elmec (12210) 2007-05-25 17:50
Great architecture and perfect details of the architecture.
Very good light and good line of shadow in the forward!
axiotea (21649) 2007-05-26 3:04
A nice and sunny POV on that part of the square, with lovely architecture, somehow defaced by the logo you mentioned.
Great vivid colors and and perfect sharpness.
riclopes (35577) 2007-05-26 15:37
It's impossible to satisfy everybody, David :) I prefer stronger contrasts and sillouettes, but this result is quite satisfatory for me. The architecture is gorgeous and the KFC isn't that bad in there. I actually can think of so many worst examples of integration bettween new and old architecture...
The composition is perfect, as usual in your photos and the colors are very appealing. Again, I enjoyed reading your looong note. Getting lost is usually the best way to find fantastic non-touristic places :)
AiresSantos (56155) 2007-05-27 2:05
Amazing picture of the Brasov's Council Square. Good POV, excellent satured colours and very interesting note
TFS and greetings
clnaef (6289) 2007-05-27 3:38
Belle ambiance sur cette place de Brasov !
jhm (140563) 2007-05-27 8:17
The facades are very lovely and certainly the building in middle with the tower, very well of quality, a pity for the dark shadow in foreground, nevertheless a nice composition.
rbcy1974 (20758) 2007-05-28 9:02
Very nice view of this square
the view is excellent
and the colours of the buildings are well captured
John_F_Kennedy (43045) 2007-05-29 6:27
Excellent view. I like the vertical composition and clear image. Good framing and sharp.
Henryk_Bilor (20799) 2007-05-29 12:56
Interesting architecture. Good capture with ideal light on buildings and dark silhouettes in the foreground.
Angshu (56040) 2007-06-14 23:45
Really beautiful, with the typical architecture. You did a good touchup job to the FG to coax out certain details & yet keeping the interest in the BG buildings. Well composed & executed.
veve (4189) 2007-06-16 13:31
Very good quality of image!
Great composition and excellent contrast light-shadow!
plimrn (21344) 2007-06-18 8:31
Hi David, Whjat I like best aboiut this photo is the detail of the tower against the blue sky. Next I like the constrat between the bright buidings and the people walking in the shade. After reading your excellently wide-ranging note, I must say, you struck the perfect balance in your shadow lightening work. Anymore would have looked fake, but darker would make me wonder why you didn't just crop the photo more tightly. The photo is so beautiful that at first I didn't see the KFC, it's actuually rather low-key for one of their signs. It's that ugly banner that annoyed me. So we agree, no signs except road signs and all utility wires must be placed underground and more than anything we should roll things back to 2000 and let Al Gore assume his presidency. :-)
- Copyright: David Astley (banyanman) (7789)
- Genre: Places
- Medium: Color
- Date Taken: 2007-05-03
- Categories: Architecture
- Camera: Nikon D100, Nikkor AF-S 24-120/3.5-5.6G ED, Circular PL
- Exposure: f/8, 1/320 seconds
- Photo Version: Original Version, Workshop
- Theme(s): Blogger slideshow [view contributor(s)]
- Date Submitted: 2007-05-21 9:52