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Book Giveaway: Nichole Robertson’s Paris in Color

We have been fans of Nichole Robertson ever since we first discovered her blog, Little Brown Pen, many moons ago. She manages to capture details of our favorite city that render it accessible, touching, intimate — even to those who haven’t walked her streets, ogling marché produce and perfectly coordinated café chairs in many years. We’re delighted to be offering a copy of her latest book, Paris in Color, to one lucky reader today — simply leave a comment below and we’ll pick a random winner on June 29. Want an extra entry? Pin this post and leave a link to it below in a separate comment (to ensure you have two entries!) – Geneviève. UPDATE: We have now selected winner. Congratulations to Jessie K. from Nova Scotia!

In January 2009, I moved to Paris with my husband, and two young sons. Despite the damp cold and relentless gray, we enjoyed exploring our new neighborhood. One day, I noticed a few objects in a similar shade of red, and shot them. As I walked, I found other things I liked in that shade and photographed those as well. When I returned home and uploaded them to my blog, the response was, “more!”

I quickly became obsessed, and spent weeks singling out different shades. Searching for colors is a surprisingly democratic process, as it’s just as likely to appear on something spectacular (Notre Dame) as it is on something pedestrian (a trash can). I didn’t question whether the object was famous, old, or important, I just shot it. The serendipitous nature of the process meant that I never had a plan, and that was part of the fun. Continue Reading »

Posted in Arts, Events | 393 Comments »

Photographing Paris: Tips from a Travel Photographer

You’d think that as a travel photographer who’s endlessly enamored of Paris, finding infinite inspiration for things to shoot in the City of Light would be proverbial cake. Well, you’d be wrong. At least where this Francophile photog is concerned!

My problem with Paris (and what a wonderful challenge to have) is that after so many visits, what was once a mysterious new wonderland to discover and dissect through the lens is now a favorite, intimately familiar old haunt. So when I found myself “stuck” in Paris for two weeks last spring per that little volcanic kerfuffle in Iceland instead of down south in new-to-me Nice, I was actually un peu perturbed.

After settling into the reality that I’d be in Paris awhile — and potentially a really long while if that blasted Eyjafjallajökull didn’t pipe down already, I finally began to relax and reflect on how best to start a fresh relationship with this city I had captured through my lens so many times before. In the end, I don’t know what I was so worried about! With a few simple adjustments to my habitual Paris routines, seeing the city anew was easy.

Even though you’re not in Venice, go ahead and get lost.

Armed with my trusty copy of Michelin’s Paris par Arrondissement, I wandered sans worry. One of the most important things I learned was to take the time to explore and absorb at a leisurely clip – day or night. Rather than defaulting to the subway, the bus became my primary mode of public transportation. Better to survey large, unfamiliar chunks of the city that way, and scout new nooks and crannies to tackle à pied. Similarly, if I did ride the metro, I used it to reach pockets of Paris that I’d never seen or strolled before. It was fantastique.

Get up early, or stay out late.

As on any trip, I set my alarm to rise and shine before the sun and the city. I love doing this and particularly in a place like Paris, both for the dreamy photo opps and for the priceless experience of watching timeless cityscapes come to life. Plus it’s just about the only way you’re going to score some private time with landmarks like La Tour Eiffel. Unless you’re willing to stay out way after dark, which isn’t really my thing, but man — talk about interesting photo opportunities. Continue Reading »

Posted in Arts, Events, Travel | 7 Comments »