In two weeks, I will be heading back to Paris and I am beside myself with excitement. I have been carefully planning possible locations and times to capture photographic images, but let’s get real. There are other reasons to be there. And it is entirely likely that my blog postings will cease entirely during the 15-day trip as we use the too-short time available to concentrate fully on whatever experiences we may encounter. But, at the moment, this begins the final count-down, a retrospective of past trips to help set the mood.
The Louvre Pyramid at Twilight
I like to learn a little bit about subjects that I photograph and there is a lot to know about this place. In 1981 President François Mitterrand launched a major expansion of the Louvre, a project headed by I.M. Pei and including Yann Weymouth as Chief of Design. The project was completed in 1989, featuring glass manufactured with Fontainbleau white sand to attain a perfectly clear white color supported by a metal structure designed by Navtec, a U.S. firm known for its rigging on America’s Cup sailboats. (Technical Data: Nikon D200 with 18-20 0mm f/3.5 lens set at 18 mm; exposure: 1/40th sec. @ f/3.5, EV at -1.0 at ISO 400)
The Eiffel Tower at Night
And no trip to Paris can be complete without a photo of the Eiffel Tower. Named for its designer Gustave Eiffel, it was completed in 1889 to mark the centennial of the French Revolution and served as the entrance arch for the 1889 World’s Fair. Its completion also ended the short reign of the Washington Monument as the tallest building in the world. The unusual blue lighting and circle of 12 illuminated stars in this image were a temporary celebration of France assuming the Presidency of the European Union in the summer of 2008 for a six-month term.
I didn’t have a tripod, but there is a wide ledge on the balcony of the Place du Trocadero that is perfect for a platform. (Technical Data: Photographed from the Place du Trocadero with a Nikon D200 with 18-20 0mm f/3.5 lens set at 29mm; exposure 4 sec. @f/4.0, ISO 500)
Inside the Musee d’Orsay
The Musee d’Orsay originally was a railway station built in 1900 for the Universal Exposition. It served this function for 39 years and was used for other purposes until 1970 when it was about to be destroyed. The Ministry of Culture blocked the plan, directing that it be preserved and transformed into an art museum to bridge the gap between the Louvre and contemporary art of the Georges Pompidou Centre. It was opened in 1986.
I found an upper balcony overlooking what must have been the original train shed and made three handheld exposures. It was one of my first attempts at Photomerge. (Technical Data: Nikon D700 with 24-70 mm f/2.8 lens set at 24 mm; exposure: 1/80th sec. @ f/4.5, at ISO 400)
Phone Call, Paris 2008
“Street Photography” is not my strong suit but sometimes one gets lucky. In this case, I noticed the coincidence of the color of the young woman’s purse and the display in the store window. She very kindly remained engrossed in a lengthy cell phone conversation giving me plenty of time to get my act together. (Technical Data: Nikon D-200 with 18-20 0mm f/3.5 lens set at 80mm; exposure 1/125th @f/5.6, ISO 400)
If anyone has a favorite photo location in Paris, please let me know. You might see it in a future post.