My wife and I recently returned from our month-long honeymoon in Italy, France, and Morocco. It was amazing and we had a wonderful time, but as is the case on long trips, I’ve returned with so, so many photos. Luckily, I was disciplined enough during the trip to do most of the selecting and editing on the go, but that still left me with hundreds of images. How do you share so many photos while trying to explain the context of what you’re seeing? Of course I turned to Instagram first, but I felt super limited in what I could share and talk about. I also didn’t want to flood everyone’s feed with a bunch of travel photos that would be quickly scrolled past.
So in an effort to share those images and give them some context and a place to live online, I’ve decided to share them and some accompanying stories in an ongoing series called, “‘Moon Phases.” I’ll be sharing photos from each city we visited and giving a little insight into how and why I created the images.
So, let’s kick things off with Naples:
N A P L E S
We landed in Naples early in the morning after a short layover in Paris. Determined to stay on our feet (the jet lag was very real) and maximize the only full day we had there, we quickly got settled in to our hotel, showered, and asked the front desk for suggestions on where to go. We heard and read a lot about Naples before the trip, and a lot of it was surprisingly negative. Lots of “so dirty,” “very dangerous,” “worst experience in Italy,” etc. etc, so we were looking forward to exploring for ourselves.
Unsurprisingly, we discovered an incredible city with the same hustle and bustle as a lot of other major metropolises we had visited, but with a few thousand extra years of history built in (it’s one of the oldest continually inhabited cities in the world). It was colorful and vibrant, gritty and beautifully chaotic (dodging scooters quickly became second nature) with lots of narrow winding streets and layers of texture everywhere. As with a lot of Italian cities, there’s this romantic charm about seeing the ancient and the modern thrown together. In Naples though, the old seems to swallow the new, and you’re reminded that despite all the modernity, this city is still rooted in it’s ancient identity.
Naples, for me, was a hard city to photograph in such a short time. Frame it too wide and you miss the texture and so many small human moments happening all around you. Focus in too tight and you miss the grandeur and beauty of the city. I tried to find a happy medium, but ultimately the humans (and a few dogs) won out. No surprise there if you know me.
To further assist in staving off jet lag, and to get a sampling of Neapolitan cuisine, we booked a food tour! I don’t have many photos from the tour itself (I was too busy stuffing my face), but we did get to try a Naples staple (thanks I’ll be here all night): Pizza! By the time we got to the pizza portion of the tour, we were already pretty full, but I can confirm it was very delicious. Our food tour guide, Rita, was kind enough to take a photo of our semi-delirious selves, as we chowed down.
After a full day of walking and eating (and sweating), we made our way back to the hotel and passed out. It was a great first day in Italy, and Naples was the perfect introduction. On to the Amalfi Coast…