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Glendalough irish landscape photo by Barry Hendrickson

Captivating Glendalough

Barry and I were just a few days into our first trip into Ireland, when we drove to Wicklow County to see Glendalough. The word Glendalough in Gaelic is Gleann Dá Loch meaning Glen of the Two Lakes, which is so fitting for this serene photograph. Not too far from this beautiful lake is the home one of Ireland’s most impressive monasteries. I found this ancient site captivating....

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Famine Cottage, Dingle Peninsula by Barry Hendrickson @Hendrickson Fine Art Photography

Driving the Dingle Peninsula

If I had to name one of my favorite places in Ireland, it would be hard to choose. However, the Dingle Peninsula is definitely one of my top spots. Barry and I took the road out of Dingle to travel on one of our favorite drives in Ireland — Slea Head Drive. This route circles the stunningly beautiful Dingle Peninsula. One stop along the way was this Famine Cottage.   Stepping inside this preserved cottage gave me a small idea of what living was like for the Irish in the mid 19th century. In such a picturesque setting, it is hard to imagine the suffering that took place during the Famine. The Irish Potato Famine, also called The Great Hunger, devastated Ireland between...

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Fairy Tree by Barry Hendrickson

Finding Fairy Trees

These lone hawthorn trees sprinkled throughout the Irish countryside are thought to be a sacred home for fairies. While we were traveling on the West side of Ireland, we kept finding these lone fairy trees. We were drawn to them.   What we learned that trees were worshipped in Ireland for centuries and most were believed to have magical or healing properties. For example Fairy trees, typically a Hawthorne, are found all over the countryside. Certain Hawthorne’s are considered sacred in Ireland. Stories are told that these trees are a favorite gathering place for fairies. Irish beliefs say never to disturb the home of the fairies or it will bring you bad luck.   When we Irish look at our history, our literature and...

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Burren by Barry Hendrickson photography

The Burren

Western Ireland's Limestone Landscape   Giant boulders are tumbled upon this bizarre, lunar-like landscape. Billowing clouds blow over the North Atlantic Ocean, this is the west coast of Ireland.   While we were traveling in County Clare, Barry captured this panorama with the ocean beyond. This place is called the “Burren” which comes from the Gaelic word “Boíreann” meaning a rocky place. A fitting name for so much stone. The bare exposed rocky land really was cool to see for me, because of how different it is from ‘the green’ I had expected to see in Ireland.   The Burren covers an area of 160 square km, in north County Clare and parts of south County Galway. This unusual landscape, which includes the Cliffs of Moher,...

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Claddagh by Barry Hendrickson photo

Claddagh, an Irish Icon

  Claddagh County Galway, Ireland Barry Thomas Hendrickson, © Hendrickson Fine Art Photography   I learned about the Claddagh ring from my mother. It is a long lasting Irish symbol of love and faithfulness. The heart stands for love, the hands for friendship and the crown for loyalty.  My mother gave a Claddagh ring to each of her three daughters. So, I happily received my own Claddagh ring a few decades ago. I later learned that the ring is often used as a wedding ring, and how it is worn has meaning too. If the heart points inwards, you are spoken for, or when the heart is points away are open to a new love.   While Barry and I were visiting Galway City, we stumbled across...

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Ruins in the Valley, County Wicklow by Barry Hendrickson

Wandering the Wicklow Mountains

The Wicklow Mountains are not that far south of the city of Dublin. In the past centuries, these mountains were remote enough to have provide a refuge for opponents to the English rule. Rebels that took part in the 1798 Irish uprising, hid out in this region for years.   In 1800, the frustrated British started building a military road. This road was devised to help flush out the rebels, and in the end has only made this area more accessible. Currently, this winding road makes for a spectacular drive with many views of breathtaking scenery.    While wandering though the Wicklow Mountains, Barry and I discovered these ruins. One can only imagine what this structure was used for in the past. Barry...

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Rock of Cashel, County Tipperary, Ireland by Barry Thomas Hendrickson

Stone, Texture & Ancient History

Bring it on! This photograph ties all of these elements -- stone, texture and history -- together.  These carved Romanesque arches are believed to be from the 12th century. Barry and I found them in Cormac’s Chapel, one of the older structures atop the Rock of Cashel. I just love how the black and white medium shows off the texture and composition. A common theme woven among our photos.   We were traveling from Dublin to Kinsale, when we saw this giant stone arising out of the Tipperary plains. Hard to miss and super cool was the Rock of Cashel (Caiseal Mumhan in Gaelic). This ancient site was a symbol of power for Kings who ruled over this region for over a...

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St Benens Church Hendrickson Fine Art Photo

Desert in the Sea

It is an adventure to journey to the Aran Islands. These rugged islands are found in Western Ireland, in County Galway. Having heard stories of these islands, Barry and I couldn’t wait to visit. We took the ferry from Rossaveal to visit Inishmore, the largest of the three islands. We were prepared to leave our car behind. When exploring this island sprinkled with ancient stone sites, it is necessary to bike, hike or take a pony and trap. Our trip on Inishmore was in October, often a cold and windy time of year. But we had lots of sun, glorious sun. Barry however, was frustrated by photographing in all of that super bright sun. It was reflecting off the limestone...

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