Carnival Venice, Italy

In the Spring of 2013, I reluctantly accompanied Jennifer on a three week tour of Italy.

Our most recent out-of-country trips had been to Africa, which I loved!

Prior to going, I had semi-complained that Italy didn't have any wild animals or even a zoo.

Spoiler Alert: I had a great time in Italy and would even love to return one day.

We traveled by bus with 22 other tourists plus our Italian guide and a professor of art history from the University of Virginia.

We began in Amalfi and ended in Venice.

Jennifer had arranged for two extra days for us in Venice, which we really enjoyed.

Venice was other-worldly; colorful and vibrant.

I got caught up in photographing the Carnival masks on display in Venice and Burano.

Carnival Masks were everywhere

After we got home I began reviewing and editing my photos from Italy.

And later I began using Photoshop to eliminate the background from the Carnival masks.

My first idea was to create 4X6 images with black backgrounds and black holes for the eyes and then paste these onto note cards.

I isolated the masks from the background and created Note Cards

Recently I began using photographs of the eyes from my grandchildren, nieces, nephews, etc. behind the masks.

After posting these images on Facebook, it drove my realtives crazy trying to identify the eyes on the masks.

Based on this attention, as well as my own intuition, I began trying to create an image using the Carnival masks with the background of Venice.

When I think of Venice, I think of the water surrounding this unique Italian city and gondolas.

I began trying to incorporate the photo that I took from Saint Mark’s Square with gondolas tied to moring posts.

Below are several of the more than 15 attempts that I tried, and tried and tried, but to no avail.

I was beginning to think I was "beating a dead horse".

But I just couldn't let it go.

My next idea was to add clouds to the background and make the mask images more transparent.

These are some of the cloud images I photographed.

I thought that possibly a sunset sky image and a few of the masks added in semi-transparency would help.

Finally, I got the idea to duplicate a cloud image, mirror it and paste the cloud images end to end.

This was beginning to look promising.

And this image of the clouds and sky looked like a natural fit.

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