Siena is one of the most beautiful cities of Tuscany. One of Italy’s best preserved medieval towns, located in the heart of Tuscany. We went for a day to this beautiful town.
Siena is built on three hills and surrounded by well preserved walls, is filled with fine examples of Gothic architecture and has one of the world’s most unique piazzas – Piazza del Campo.
We visited Siena by train from Florence. It’s an easy ride and you can walk from the train station to the city. (about 10 min). When you get out of the train station, walk through the shopping mall across and you have to take about 10 escalators to get to the top (!). Once at the top you have a nice view over the landscape.
I am not going to tell you about the history and when the city was founded and by who. There are plenty of websites who do that. See links at the ‘More info’ section. Siena is a very nice town from the moment you walk through one of the gates you immediately see the rich and well preserved culture, history, etc. Only by walking around in the city you can see the tons of small streets, feel the atmosphere and get lost in the hundreds of nice buildings. Eventually you will make it to the impressive Piazza del Campo and Piazza del Duomo.
Siena is a tourist hotspot. So it is busy, very busy. When we where there (Sept. 2016), it was packed in the city center. When you move a bit to the outskirts of the city it is less busy (in some streets even quiet) and you still get a good impression of Siena.
I will leave it here, because on the web you can find plenty of info and I have nothing to add to that info. Have a look at the photos instead 🙂
Siena is a challenge for photographers. Architecture and landscape goes hand in hand. So what to bring: a camera body with high dynamic range. Lenses: you can take zooms and primes. For the landscape and walk around lens, a 24-70 or 24-105 will do fine. For architecture: go wide. A 14mm or a wide zoom (16-35mm) is a must. If you got a tilt shift lens, this is the place to use it. Use filters, CPL, ND and gradient ND.
Shooting the scene.
Well it’s not easy. The contrasts are high, especially on sunny days. HDR lovers will have a very good time here. You really have to check on which time you want to shoot in which direction because of the bright sunlight. (depends also on the time of the year). For example: In the morning, I came down walking from the train station towards the city and you walk against the sunlight. Speaking about light: it is ever changing. I have seen (in 1 day) bright blue skies, harsh sunlight, clouds, grey sky, overcast, rain and again blue skies. Focus recompose technique will help you to get the scenes light out better.
I was on a time limit, but if you have the time (a couple of days) use it and you will shoot some of your nicest photos.
Below some links with more info.
click to view larger size.