I can’t remember when I first saw ‘Les Horloges’, the statue by Arman that stands in front of St Lazare train station in Paris. I do know that I’ve been fascinated by it from the start, and have tried to shoot it in interesting ways repeatedly. The pigeon couple and the wide-angle shot make it more interesting, don’t they?
*Matter and Anti-Matter*
Powerful sunlight low on the horizon will create these deep projected shadows that I love. As I mentioned in a previous post I’m starting to experiment with how to capture them in an esthetic way, and this is one of those attempts.
*On a Break !*
Paris has more old stone and churches than you might think. I like it when old and new clash in interesting ways. I think these guys were renovating a nearby church or something…
One of the things I love about winter light, besides the soft quality of the light itself is the fact that you get long shadows for a long period of time in the afternoon. I haven’t done much with them, but this is an example of what I’d like to do better going forward.
*The Portal of Shadow and Light*
I love winter light. I know it’s only October, but in Paris the light felt like winter already. I was walking around North of Les Halles when I stumbled upon this church. I think it’s Saint-Nicolas des Champs. Anyway, this door, half in light, half in shadows had the most wonderful detail, and felt like something from a mysterious movie.
Shooting from the hip is hit and miss. In fact, it’s a lot more miss than hit. But when you hit you get photos from an angle you wouldn’t normally get without kneeling, which would be conspicuous, to say the least.
To me (and probably to most other Europeans) it’s really funny to see, since early October and while it’s still 25-28 degrees outside, these staples of winter appear on the streets: sweet potatoes, chestnuts and what I believe to be quail eggs. I should try all three one day, just to compare with what we get in Europe, but there’s no way I’m eating that in this heat!
Asian Crouch Again
I have often talked and illustrated what I (and many others) call the Asian Crouch, this particular waiting posture that you see everywhere in China and in other parts of Asia also. I don’t know what people did when crouching before mobile phones existed, but I know what they do now… Incidentally, this is when I’m really glad I’ve worked on my hip shooting skills. The shot would be entirely different (and less effective in my opinion) at eye level.
The Lantern Girl
The Tai Hang Fire Dragon festival happens every year around the mid-autumn festival. Locals carry a long and sinuous Dragon body made of rope in which thousands of lit incense sticks have been planted through the streets of Tai Hang. This year I went to the festivities, and despite the massive crowd it was really great to witness it. In the area where the Dragon was getting « refilled » with fresh incense, there was a cordon of lantern carrying volunteers to stop the crowd, and this girl’s expression in the light of the lanterns struck me.
Canon A2, Lensbaby, Ilford FP4+
In French circus fiction (is that a thing?) the ringmaster is often called Monsieur Loyal (Mister Faithful). Apparently, like many such things, the name derives from Anselme-Pierre Loyal (1753-1826) who was a famous ringmaster and circus manager. The top hat and the moustache are part of the trademark look, and Thomas here has the former, and the lensbaby makes his goatee half blurred, which give the illusion of a moustache. Hence the name for the photo.