Sunday, 7 September 2014

Paris Through the Viewfinder - La Louvre

Paris is known for many things, from its beautiful architecture to its delicious cuisine. I visited Paris in 2011 with my wife and was shocked by the unlimited opportunities to capture great images through the viewfinder of my camera. While wandering around Paris with my wife, my camera never left my eye. This blog will showcase some of the most amazing sites from a photographer's standpoint. Although most of the attractions here are the typical cliche touristy hotspots, I tried to capture the sites from unique vantage points.

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The apartment we rented for our stay in Paris was very close to Notre Dame, so we walked past the Louvre almost every day. It's a huge old palace that spans many city blocks and has tons of history. It has been added to and it's appearance has changed over time, and that alone makes it interesting. It is also the home of a huge collection of art, including the Mona Lisa. 

The Louvre has a huge open courtyard, surrounded by the amazing old architecture of the palace. It's amazing to see hundreds of tourists and locals just having around in the courtyard, sitting on the edges of the pools and steps to the buildings, reading or jut hanging out. It's a relaxing atmosphere as you sit surrounded by the beautiful architecture. 
There are a lot of people who don't like the glass pyramids sitting in the courtyard. People feel they are too modern and ugly to be placed around the ancient palace. By I feel the opposite. Typically I like ancient stuff and I think the modern stuff is ugly. But I actually thought the contrast was perfect in this case. The glass pyramids complimented the existing architecture really well, and I think they really added to the photos of the Louvre. 

I spent a few hours at the Louvre one night. My wife sat on the edge of one of the pools and read a book while I ran around the courtyard taking pictures. There aren't too many different things to shoot, but you can get all different angles of the pyramids, pools, and pieces of the palace architecture. 
The architecture and pyramids are very well-lit, so it's pretty easy to get the right exposure without too many over- or under-exposed areas. It's easy to get pictures of the pyramids with the buildings, or the pyramids with the pools, or all three together. The water in the pools is almost stationary, so it looks smooth in most pictures. I'm a huge fan of taking photos at nigh, and even shorter exposures make the water look like glass, and the reflections are crystal clear. 

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