7 Nov 2014

Playing Parisian Peek-A-Boo

Paris, Landscapes.Peek-a-Boo, Vicki Archer

 

Do you ever become so familiar with a place that you forget to really look at what is around you?

I had that revelation the last time I visited Paris.

I understood that complacency had taken a tiny hold, not in an un-grateful way but in a missing-the-detail kind of way.


Paris, Landscapes.Peek-a-Boo, Vicki Archer


As I wondered the rue de Rivoli I started noticing, really noticing the architecture.

What held my attention was the intersection of angles, the way the grand and the beautiful were also linear and sharp.

Angles soaring towards and framed against the Parisian skies.


OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

 

If Paris were a gender I would think of her as feminine.

On this particular day, as I walked along with my focus held high,  I saw a masculine side for the first time.

A blend of acute edges.

Chimney stacks, balconies, dormer windows and double pitched zinc mansards.


Paris, Landscapes.Peek-a-Boo, Vicki Archer


 I took a fresh look at the courtyard facing the Louvre.

 I.M Pei’s glass pyramid sliced through the softness of the Louis’ reign.

A hard edge conflicting with the grandiose architecture of the classical period.

Contrasts rendering each structure more beguiling, better together than alone.


Paris, Landscapes.Peek-a-Boo, Vicki Archer


Wherever I looked I saw scenes within a scene, a cityscape built of surprise layers.

Arches were framing points and arches were framed within arches.


 Paris was playing peek-a boo.

And now I see you… xv


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19 Comments

Rosalie Carmichael

You are so right Vicki. Looking back at my photo I can see what you mean, especially the doors of which I took a lot of photos.

Reply
Vicki

I am a mad photographer of doors too… last time I focussed on their paint colours, sometines the decorative detailing…
Love the way we see things differently each time… It’s never dull that way.. :)

Reply
Shane

Paris has always felt feminine to me.
Next year I will look for her masculine side through my lens!
I think of masculine architecture as angular – the glass pyramid a perfect example.
You’re so right, each year I visit, I see Paris through fresh eyes and a new perspective.
I’ve got her under my skin!!!
Your last photo with the arches is amazing.

Reply
Vicki

Maybe we chould create a check list of different qualities… a kind of “where’s wally” of Parisian features… and see what we find!
Think of all the different shots focusing on colours alone!
I’m going to create new lists for my December visit… :)

Reply
Mary Karkoulas

Paris is continuously a breathtakingly beautiful city.i do not know where to look first the elegant doors , superb street lamps , gargoyles ,spires balconies and numerous motifs on buildings.
I am a Francophile and can never get enough .

Reply
Vicki

Just like me, Mary… :)
These days I try and pick a focus and expand what I have seen previously… It’s funny how you can go to the same places and yet get an entirely different viewpoint…

Reply
Anita Rivera

An intriguing read this morning chère Vicki – I was to see “her” in May with some students, but our high school trip had to be cancelled. But maybe my husband can take me because the last time I was in Paris, eight days was not enough to process the details. Oh what a city. What must the French think when they stop to look at their mother city, and say, “Moi, j’y habite!” Lovely…

Reply
Vicki

Oh no… you must be so disappointed Anita and your students too… :(
8 days, 80 days .. never enough… :)

Reply
Karena

Vicki, I haven’t been to Paris yet even though I have traveled a great deal. Believe me it is at the top of my list! I love looking at all of the gorgeous images of architectural feats accomplished in that great city.

xoxo
Karena
The Arts by Karena

Reply
Caroline Lacroix

Just to comment what Anita has written: I’m afraid a lot of French people don’t realize how beautiful Paris is. I share my time between Paris and Charente, in the countryside. I know nobody in Charente who would like to live in Paris… This morning I walked from Jardin du Luxembourg to Trocadéro, I enjoyed each minute of my walk! I’m happy to see that you like Paris so much.

Reply
Vicki

Love it!
Maybe we all loose sight of where we live at times… sometimes I return to Provence and am absolutely flawed by the beauty of the scenery or I fly back into London and think that it truly is one amazing city…
but Paris… as a visitor it never lets me down… :)

Reply
Nancy in Naples

My husband and I returned this week from our first autumn visit to this most magnificent of cities and we are already dreaming about our next trip! I agree with you, Vicki, 80 days would not be enough. Paris is inspirational on so many levels, from the physical beauty of its architecture and its people, to the extraordinary service provided by those who take pride in making her visitors feel welcome and appreciated. We had one young woman spend fifteen minutes carefully wrapping an inexpensive Christmas ornament to insure its safe trip home in our very overcrowded luggage! Your photographs are perfect, Vicki. They help to illustrate why we are compelled to return as often as possible. Thank you for sharing them with us. Have a wonderful weekend.

Reply
Vicki

Thank you Nancy and I am so happy you enjoyed your stay… I am only sorry I didn’t make it to Paris during your holiday… I would of loved to see you there.
Enjoy the Christmas decoration… I have carried so many baubles in my luggage over the years and always promise myself that it will be the last… but come December I will be back in Le Bon Marche looking at them again… :)

Reply
Candice @ NotesFromABroad

I carry a camera with me everywhere so I figured out that this keeps me looking at things around me much more than if I were just taking a stroll.
I don’t have to use it but it sort of reminds me to see things in that light .. as photo worthy or not.
Thus I have a gazillion photos of Buenos Aires and now New York State … ( sheep, lots of sheep lol)

Reply
Vicki

Great thinking Candice… I find when I take my camera I am in a different mind set too… Always looking for new angle.. :)

Reply
swan

I agree with everything you say about the buildings in Paris and so well put and photographed by you. I wonder around Paris with eyes wide open, well most of the time, and marvel at the beauty. In fact it makes me not so anxious to visit other cities. Domage, as I used to be a great traveller. Paris has spoilt me.
Bon w/e
Swan – now living in France

Reply
Vicki

That’s the trouble… when I think about where I would like to go… the answer is always Paris… :)

Reply
Janet

There is no other city as enchanting and beautiful as Paris. Romance and femininity are everywhere. The attention to detail in all of its structures is magnificent. I was in love with this city the eye laid eyes on it.

Janet

Reply

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