From Russia With Love... Part 3
When we last left Monte he was making his way through the Kremlin's incredible interior...
One of the highlights of my visit to the Kremlin was undoubtedly seeing some of Russia's greatest treasures that are housed there. We entered by an incredible staircase into a wondrous collection of some of the finest artifacts that I'm sure I'll ever see during my lifetime. Fortunately, I was allowed to photograph some of these great treasures. I used my new 24-70mm Canon lens wide-open at f/2.8 with the ISO set to 1600. I was amazed at the quality of the images I got at such a low-light level.
Being a clock collector, some of the first things that caught my eyes were the unbelievable gold clocks that were in abundance. This one in particular seemed to stand out for me because of its setting. The fact that everything was just sitting out there in the open--the gold table, the clock, the candlesticks, the statues--was amazing to me.
Have you ever seen real Faberge eggs? They defy description. They are intricately designed with gold, jewels, and sometimes intricate statuary built into them. They unquestionably live up to their reputation. Many of the eggs were on display in locations around the world, so only a few were on display. Those that were, however, were displayed together with other magnificent artifacts once used by some of Russia's most famous rulers.
One entire section of the museum was a display of crowns. No figment of your imagination could ever come close to the actual crowns. I photographed this one individually, because Nadir told me that this is one of the most famous. All of these pictures were made by photographing directly through special glass windows. I shot them all by available light.
Window after window contained
the actual gowns that were worn by Russian royalty. Each was displayed
with the actual accessories that were worn with each of the dresses. Unbelievably
gorgeous tapestries were hung on the walls with each of the gowns. Each
of these tapestries had originally hung in the palaces from which the
gowns came. I photographed this particular gown from the back because
its train was over 24 ft in length. Yes, that's real gold thread
woven into the fabric.
For my real final evening in
Moscow I celebrated at Dolf's restaurant with both Roustam and Nadir.
Here's what the front of the restaurant looked like as we entered
for our farewell dinner. If you're ever in Moscow you can't
consider the trip complete unless you've dined at Cafe des Artistes.
It's the only restaurant with outdoor seating on the one street
in Moscow that's closed from cars. It's right in the middle
of the theater district.