Ilkbahar, Hoşgeldiniz! Welcome, Spring!
|Interior of Fethiye Camii|
I took advantage of the sunny weather by heading to Fatih's Çarşamba neighborhood, for a visit of Fethiye Camii, also known as Pammakaristos Church, with the intention of sketching it. Set atop of Istanbul's fifth hill, Fethiye Camii is a small island of tranquility with few visitors compared to other Istanbul attractions. Once a Byzantine church, Fethiye Camii boasts some spectacular and well-preserved mosaics that echo those found in Chora Church (Kariye Camii) and Hagia Sophia. After the fall of Constantinople, the church became the seat of the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate and was later converted into a mosque in 1591 and given the name Fethiye, or "conqueror", in commemoration of the Ottoman conquest of Azerbaijan and Georgia. On the day I visited, the lawn in front of the church was carpeted with daisies- their fresh faces an ode to spring time. It was the perfect spot to sit and sketch. After taking some time to gawk at the meticulous mosaic work inside, I sat outside in the sun to sketch its exterior.
|Mosaics, Fethiye Camii|
|Fethiye Camii and a daily field|
|Fethiye Camii sketch|
We take the ferry back and run into other friends. The sun is shedding its last golden glow for the day and passengers throw bread up at the trailing gulls who follow the ferry like a bridal train. It is an eased transition back to the bustle of city life. Spring is here, finally, and everything feels lighter.
|Sunday view on Burgazada|
|Ferry back to Istanbul. These two were clearly exhausted from their day on the island. It was fun to imagine these two as older men, catching up at the local çay evi.|