Sicilia I | The clue to everything

“To have seen Italy without having seen Sicily is not to have seen Italy at all, for Sicily is the clue to everything.”
— Goethe

Sicily- Jewel of the Mediterranean

Placed in the middle of the Mediterranean, with continental Europe above and Africa below, Sicily has been a meeting point and melting pot of cultures since prehistoric times- the Phoenicians, the Carthaginians, the Romans and the Greeks all left their mark on this isle. And it shows. The past becomes present. The landscape is dotted with ancient monuments and cities from another era, beautiful scenery and sleepy little fishing villages. 

I was there to attend a friend's wedding. The ceremony took place in a picturesque little village situated in the mountains west of the city of Catania. The ceremony was followed by the most amazing culinary indulgence I have ever experienced at a wedding, a true feast... and then live music, dancing & dessert by the pool. Sicily certainly knows how to do weddings! But it knows how to do so much more besides -the seafood, the wine, the coffee, the weather, the baroque towns, the nature reserves, the beaches, the people... 

 Street stall selling DVDs in central Catania

Street stall selling DVDs in central Catania

 Graffitied Building in central Catania

Graffitied Building in central Catania

Black Clouds, White Clouds, Sunshine...

There was sunshine. Lots of it. Which meant, of course, there was harsh light and harsh shadows too. Harsh light and harsh shadows are something we don't get too much of in Scotland. Harsh weather, yes, certainly. Although highly changeable, anyone who's ever been here will know that the Scottish weather usually manages to incorporate some form of cloud no matter what season it is- black clouds, white clouds, large clouds, small clouds, fast moving clouds, slow moving clouds. Always clouds. Sometimes, these clouds act like a giant diffuser in the sky, producing a particularly pleasing quality of light which can be great when producing photographic work outdoors.  Sicily was different. Taking photographs there was different. In photographic terms it could be compared to working with a giant soft-box everyday and suddenly having to use just a bare flash bulb. That's what the difference in light felt like. And it was great. Not only was the subject matter different and new (well, actually very old I suppose) but the the light was different and new too.


Comments welcome below:

Archie MacFarlane, The Royal Mile, Edinburgh, , EH8

Photographer and Designer based in Scotland.