Blue Mosque

As I mentioned a few months ago, I had found a trove of pictures from a trip to Istanbul which I had thought I’d lost. The task of editing them has been sporadic, so related posts have been random and occasional. The recent lull in fresh photo trips has given me a bit of time to catch up, so hopefully I can put up a few of the better shots now. Incidentally, this was the last trip I took with my old film camera. Given digital’s instant results (at least on a small LCD screen), I don’t miss the Schrodinger’s box aspect of film photography, where you are uncertain of your results until long after taking the shot. So maybe I’m deluding myself, but I found myself really enjoying the grain in these photos. The digital counterpart to grain, noise, seldom adds anything to a shot. But I will leave it to the viewer to decide whether the pictures below have a pleasing graininess, or are just tourist-level soft-focus snapshots.

These images are all from inside the Sultan Ahmed Mosque, commonly called the Blue Mosque for the predominant color of Iznik tiles which decorate its interior. It was built in the early 17th century, partly to provide an Ottoman answer to the Hagia Sofia, a massive Byzantine church the victorious Turks converted to a mosque after capturing Istanbul (then called Constantinople, just like in the They Might Be Giants song) in 1453.


Ceiling tile.




Stained Glass and Light Fixtures.






9 responses

  1. nice pics!

    December 22, 2013 at 8:30 am

    • tabularasa88

      Thank you Hannah!

      December 22, 2013 at 9:28 am

  2. What an amazing site to see! Personally, I would have to agree with you observation of the difference between film grain and digital noise. I love the grain and thinks it adds to the image.

    December 22, 2013 at 10:03 am

    • tabularasa88

      Thanks, Cynthia. I was hoping I wasn’t just deluding myself.

      December 22, 2013 at 10:09 am

  3. Wow, nice pictures!

    December 22, 2013 at 2:08 pm

    • tabularasa88


      December 22, 2013 at 2:21 pm

  4. Brilliant, TR!

    I am a fan of film, and like you I appreciate the grain and noise – the “analog” feel you get from vintage photos. It’s like preferring records to mp3s, manual transmissions to automatics… I’m right there with you.

    I think these shots are warmer through film. And the deletion of instant gratification through a digital screen meant whatever shot you grabbed was all the more magnificent afterward since it was a total surprise. Even the candid ones of the dog that ran across your shot, half off-frame, were excellent. These are great, TR, thanks for sharing. :)

    December 26, 2013 at 12:24 pm

    • tabularasa88

      Thanks, SI, glad you like them. I’m not a luddite, however; I’ll stick to digital for all the advantages of that medium!

      December 27, 2013 at 11:40 pm

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