Sunday, February 22, 2009

sunday stills - architecture

This week's Sunday Stills challenge was architecture. I decided early in the week that I would try and capture this theme by shooting churches. Sophie and I don't follow one particular faith, but have an appreciation for the power and beauty of all of them....a power and beauty that is often reflected in the architecture of different places of worship.


Church of Our Lady

We headed out on a road trip early Saturday morning in search of churches in Southern Ontario. Sophie rode shotgun and the sun was shining, all the right country tunes were blasting from the radio and the coffee was made just right. We had stopped half a dozen times to shoot various sizes and styles of churches and were starting our route back when we saw her....away in the distance and I knew we had one more location to hit.


sunlight streaming through the stained glass windows


detailed arch above the front door

This is the Church of Our Lady in Guelph, Ontario...sitting atop a hill and watching over the city. She took my breath away. My camera could not do her justice. The rising peaks and detailed arches, the colourful stained glass windows, the sheer reverence of her. Sophie and I sat on her front steps after we finished shooting and my eyes wandered over the horizon and the city below. I thought about how many people must have found comfort within the walls of this church over the last hundred years and more...about how many times that front door swung open as a groom and his new bride took their first steps into their new life together or about how many times that front door closed behind a congregation gathered to say final good-byes to a loved one.


front steps and doorway

The architecture was magnificent....but I sensed that the foundation of this church was not built on bricks and mortar, but on the solace, love, and joy found here by the human spirit.

46 comments:

Jen Mo said...

That is a beautiful Church! Very good photographs!

Ed said...

Very nice, I like shooting churches, the angles always amaze me.

CTG Ponies said...

Very pretty. I really like the one with the sunlight through the stained glass.

Barry said...

My daughter Heather and her family live in Guelph and the Church of Our Lady is a powerful spiritual presence that seems to guard the downtown core of that city.


The photos are stunning and a beautiful tribute.

The Wife said...

Just beautiful. And I love the stained glass pic.

Mildred said...

Majestic!

Jan said...

Wow! Love the pictures. My brother is a member of an old church in Pittsburgh with beautiful stained glass windows like those. He has always taken pictures of interesting architecture sometimes in not so nice neighborhoods. Once he got hit on the head and had his camera stolen. Glad you were out in broad daylight with Sophie riding shotgun!

Stacey's Treasures said...

What a fantastic church! It is amazing they could build something so magnificiant!

Craig Glenn said...

I am so happy you found you way to my little corner of the blogosphere. I too look forward to discovering your world and reading the adventures of Andrea and Sophie!

Thanks for the visit!

Craig

Joanne said...

Magnificent indeed! I love the gothic architecture of older churches. Reverence for the building and the faith is so apparent.

Carolina said...

Lovely photo where you just captured the sunlight streaming through the stained glass. Beautiful.

gtyyup said...

Breathtaking!! Love all of the shots; especially the light through the stained glass window...fantastic job!

Sharon said...

Very beautiful post (both words & photos). What a nice outing for you & Sophie:)

Mountain Woman said...

Beautiful photos! My favorite photo was of the sun streaming through the stained glass.

Bruce said...

Thanks for the nice comment on my blog Andrea. I love your blog...you have the nicest & prettiest doggie in the whole world!!

Sabrina said...

Breathtaking!!! I have a soft spot for churches as well! Love the stained glass pic!

Shirley said...

I wanted to do a church for this challenge, but any worth shooting are an hour and a half away. THanks for taking the time to show us this lovely Cathedral. Churches are meant to lift our souls up to God, and this church does that! Much more so than some of the modern architecture we are forced to worship in!

Kitty said...

Beautiful shots! The windows are amazing.

VioletSky said...

Beautiful chruch - must go visit it one day.
And the sun in the stained glass - great catch!

word verification - sacre!!
Perfect.

Maggie May said...

totally beautiful. i love Churches.

Muddy Boot Dreams said...

Just a wonderful post, loved the text, and the photos.

Jen

prairierunner said...

In a word? AWESOME!

Flo said...

Wow, great photos. Ontario has some really serious churches!! My church is much smaller and less ornate.

Mine is up over at my photo blog.

Far Side of Fifty said...

Andrea, Absolutely beautiful! If I had been wearing socks you would have blew them off with these photos and the accompaning post..wonderful! We have nothing nearby that even begins to compare..as you will see from my take on this subject:)

Pete said...

The last one almost makes me feel like if I enter, I might be saved.

Caffienated Cowgirl said...

I love the third photo with the stained glass - gorgeous!

Robynn's Ravings said...

Absolutely beautiful! I doubt I would have ever seen this in my life but for your sharing. The sunlight on the stained glass....wow.

And THANK YOU! for your kind words on my guest essay over at Red Pine Mountain. :) Come by anytime.

Rising Rainbow said...

Beautiful church and great pics.

The Write Girl said...

Hi Andrea,

The church photos are stunning! Very beautiful. Thank you also for post on my blog. I will definitely check out your blog also. Very nice site.

Take care

gigi said...

You out did yourself here. I really like love the grandness of this church. Just beautiful. Did Sophie enjoy as well?

Oz Girl said...

This is such a beautiful old stone church with such a history and your eloquent story puts so much emotion into it!

Mason Dixie said...

Such a beautiful church, my church back home is old and beautiful not like these power house churches anymore that just got way too much money to build.

Kathy said...

What a beautiful church and the pictures were magical too. I love the sunlight through the stained glass.

Dughallmor Beagles said...

I'm with you....not a particularly religious person....but can appreciate the beauty of some churches and that one is stunning!Love the detail in the arch :o) Gorgeous photos!
Slobbers xx

Regular Guy said...

Beautiful job. The stained glass shot is real nice!

Katherine Aucoin said...

Gorgeous shots. The architecture if the cathedral is magnificant!

uought2b.a.dog said...

Those are terrific photos!!!

Paula said...

Incredible beautiful, Andrea! I couldn't stop looking~ You're words are perfect with this post as well. You can almost feel all the emotions coming from this gorgeous old building. Makes me want to go to Church~

a corgi said...

beautiful!! I'm so glad you and Sophie took this road trip to find this church; it must look awesome in person

I loved your description of it too; taking the time to pause and imagine those going out as man/wife and those that had passed on

very nice entry :)

betty

Neas Nuttiness said...

Gorgeous - just gorgeous!

SassyDog said...

Heavenly!

T said...

Very nice photographs. I think Churches make some of the best photos.

Nikki-ann said...

What a wonderful church! It's beautiful :)

J9 said...

I particularly like the arch detail. The vibrant colors struck me!

Samantha ~ Holly and Zac ~ said...

Beautiful photo's...

MariesImages said...

Beautiful shots of the church, especially capturing the stain glass, lovely detail.
Thanks for stopping by my blog, I appreciate your kind words...Ü
Marie