The AWAI Travel Photography Workshop, Seville (Day 2)

The first session on the second day was on Adobe Lightroom, the software developed especially for photographers to work a little magic on their images. We all came prepared with a copy on our computers, and spent an absorbing hour while Efrain gave us an overview of this complex program. Class over, we walked to the Plaza de Toros de la Maestranza, the Bull Ring, for our next photo shoot.

The elegant baroque exterior of the Plaza de Toros de la Maestranza

This is the bull ring made famous by Bizet's Carmen and dates from 1761, although the magnificent complex we see today was gradually built up over the following 120 years. We joined a tour so that we could visit the museum, and to gain entrance to the bull ring itself as there was no fight on that day. The arena is huge, much bigger than the one in Ondara, where Clare and Jane played in the Ondara town band. It is also more oval than round, which is unusual for a bull ring, and it is higher in the centre, to give the toreador a downhill run to the safety of the barricade.

The pristine splendour of the bull ring.

Puerta del Príncipe (the Prince's Gate), 
with beautiful 16th-century iron doors.

The Plaza del Toros museum displays artifacts collected through the ages, depicting celebrated toreadors, their costumes, historic posters, and even the heads of heroic bulls. There is also a small chapel, where the bull fighters go to pray before they face the bull, and the possibility of death.

Matadors' uniforms, displayed in the museum

This was a bull of note, killed in a memorable fight in 1915.

The dome of the toreadors' chapel

Our next shoot of the day was at Seville's Gothic cathedral, and from the bell tower of the Giralda Tower. The foundations of the cathedral were laid in 1248 on the site of the Almohad Mosque, after the reconquest of the territory by the Spanish following the Moorish invasion. All that is left of the mosque is the Giralda Tower, from which the Muezzin made the call to prayer. The access to the bell tower is via 35 ramps, rather like the ones in the Aya Sofya, although not as steep. The reason for ramps, rather than stairs, was to enable the Muezzin to ride his horse to the top of the tower for the five-times-a-day call to prayer.

The entrance to the cathedral's Patio de los Naranjos, the Orangery.

Ornate roof detail in Seville's Gothic Cathedral

A cherub from one of the many chapels

The Plaza de Toros de la Maestranza, 
as seen from the top of the Giralda Tower

The view down Mateos Gago, where we often ate in the evenings. 
Our hotel swimming pool can be seen on the left.

In the evening, after a relaxed dinner, Sue and I sat on the rooftop bar of our hotel and sipped a cocktail, while gazing out over the cathedral and the tower - such an amazing view!

This is the other side of the tower from my previous image on day one.


  1. Looks as if you are having a fabulous time, Elizabeth! Lucky you! Enjoy!

  2. I had a great time, Claudia. The whole trip was amazing, and I learned so much. It was really worth while.


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