Monday, December 27, 2010

California Spanish Missions (Part 1)

Still in the spirit of Christmas and celebrating Christianity, I am going to highlight several of the southern California Spanish Missions.  I started this project about a year ago, and my goal is to photograph all of them.  This week I will post photos of several of the missions I have visited this past year or so (except for Tech Talk Tuesday).

Twenty one missions were built as part of the Spanish colonization in the 18th century and are scattered along the coast from San Diego to San Francisco.  All have a similar layout with a large whitewashed church and bells next to an enclosed quadrangle with various other buildings.  The missions were to serve as bases from which to explore the surrounding territory and spread Christianity to the native American Indians.  Most have been restored and are now well known southern California landmarks with museums and beautiful gardens, and many are still used for regular Catholic church services.  (My Catholic blogging buddies might be interested in seeing a bit of their history!)

I grew up just 5 minutes away from the San Gabriel Arcangel Mission and remember going there as a child.  This past fall, when we were in California visiting family, I took the time to once again tour this mission, and this time I brought my camera.  The following photos are of this mission:

San Gabriel Arcangel Mission







20 comments:

Sandra said...

i especially like the second photo with the shadows on the wall. I love this type archtecture and would really like to visit one of these. i like dropping back in time and this would take me far and away into the past. it is beautiful and i am waiting for the rest of them

Char said...

i'm always amazed at the craftmanship from the years ago, with much more crude tools.

beautiful

From the Kitchen said...

We used to live in La Jolla and very much enjoyed visits to many lovely missions. Your photos are wonderful reminders of our time there The other lovely reminder is our two sons who were born while we lived there.

Best,
Bonnie

Robin said...

Karen, lovely. I can just feel the warm breezes through the palm trees!

boromax said...

Great idea, and gorgeous photos!

I have always harbored a desire to visit all of the California Missions. We have been to seven of them, I think; so a long way to go!

I'm eager to see the rest of your photos of California Missions.

Ginny said...

Very lovely pictures. I love the palm tree shadows on the wall and the beautiful candles. It seems your photos have captured that there is a different kind of atmosphere in there, I would love to go inside and stand in it.

TONY65 said...

Luogo meraviglioso come le fotografia complimenti.

Linda (PA_shutterbug) said...

Your project sounds like it would be a good one for a photo book. I looked at file names and see HDR mentioned in several of them. The photographs look colorful but not overly so ... nice job!

SouthernSass said...

Beautiful pictures! Congrats on your photos being featured - they are always great!

Don said...

Wonderful pictures... I can't wait to see the others.

Thoughtfully blended hearts said...

Gorgeous photos Karen...even the name of this mission is beautiful...applause!!!

Chad said...

Great photos all,my favorite was #2.Have looked forward each day for your next Christmas photo;thanks.

Naturedigital said...

A beautiful series Karen.
Costas

Joop Zand said...

These pictures are very nice Karen, especially the second one.

Greetings from Holland, Joop

Tricia said...

My goodness, soooo beautiful!!! =)

Bare bilder - Pictures only said...

Hello Karen,
This is a beautiful series of photos.
Thanks for visiting my blog and leaving so nice comment. I understand that you have/had relatives from Norway. Do you know where they came from in Norway?
Hope you can visit my country in the future. It's a small country with many different landscapes, and a lot of different weather.
I think the most beautiful part of Norway is far north. In the winter there is darkness the hole day, and during the summer the midnightssun makes the night bright.
Well, that was a little bit about Norway.
Wishing you a nice day.
Greetings from Berit.

darlin said...

You take magnificent photos Karen and these here are beautiful. I have a strong opinion of American Indians being "taught" Christianity but won't go there. I get on rants when it comes to assimilation, marginalization, oppression, etc., but I'll save it for my essays.

Tanna at The Brick Street Bungalow said...

LOVE these photos! And, after the little one is gone, I'll be studying the home studio tutorial! Wishing you and yours a very happy new year!!

RedWillow said...

Wow.. Just wow. These are gorgeous.
I would have thought that St.Francis. Loved these also Karen. Would also love to do a series on churches. I have but is very small. Nothing like this.
All the best in the New Year and always have a full card.

RedWillow said...
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