Archive for the ‘Paris’ Category

Pere Lachaise Cemetery, located in Paris’s 20th arrondissement, covers 110 densely-used acres. Roads and paths between the graves can be narrow, cobblestoned and, in the case of a rainy afternoon, more than a little slippery. Among the million or so people who have been interred here, the well-known, little-known and the unknown rest side by side.  Edith Piaf, Oscar Wilde, Frederick Chopin…and of course, Jim Morrison…are here, as well as Colette, Heloise and Abelard and American author Richard Wright.

I honestly wasn’t interested in finding specific gravesites. I was there for the statues, the sepulchers and the mausoleums and…oh!…they were most beautiful.

Today’s offering is just to give some sense of what the cemetery looks like.

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We’ll look at the statuary in the next couple of posts.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Happy Monday!

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Good morning!

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As seen from our seventh-floor apartment.

Actually, I think this first shot can be titled “Paris in the Rain as shot from Standing in Barbara’s Bathtub” if you really wanted to get all GPS on me.

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At this point in the trip, my wide-angle lens had pooped out on me and I was left with the 50mm f1.4 lens. So, while other folks were swilling wine and comparing notes on the day, your friend, Wabi Sabi, was playing around with what the lens could do with rain on the rooftops and in the street below.

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My primary use for the 50mm is close-ups with great shallow depth of field or magical bokeh…but not distance shots. So really, for me this was like getting to know a brand new lens.

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As a bonus, there were no screens on any of the apartment windows and all of them cranked out. I was free to play with focus and depth of field from inside the windows or to hang out and go for a perfectly unobstructed view of the street.

No one was paying attention to me and I am grateful for that. When I get into the “Zone,”  I actually process aloud: “Yes!…Okay, okay…wait, no. Try this… All right!”

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Fortunately for me, this is a pretty opinionated AND vocal group given to excited utterances, so my own brand of hyper-enthusiasm has plenty of space to blend in.

Like everyone, I have my own list of “Things That Give me Great Joy.”  Rain is one. A splash of red is another. Blessings on the woman who showed up in my frame with a red umbrella.

 

I saved my favorites for last.

La Monocyclette: a vertical printing machine.

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Details of Marinoni’s rotary letterpress printing machine. (1883)

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Plus…though I cannot correctly identify the proper name or purpose of the Centrifugal Frammis avec Wires et les Numbers Totally Random in my post from Monday, I will share that this next device sat on the top of it. Looks pretty darned electrical to me. And the whole thing was housed in the wing designated Mechaniques.

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Seriously? That’s still not enough information?

Sigh…

I give and I give and I give…

 

Let me give you a sense of the physical setting here.  Room after room in the three story building looked like this:

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Windows! Lots of windows spilling sunshine onto warm wooden floors. Outside walls were lined with orderly display cases and this interesting set of narrow rail tracks ran through the middle. Since the tracks often ended at a wall, we concluded that it was an artifact from an earlier time.

Smaller machines and devices generally were in the glass cases. Bigger machines, like this one, dominated the centers of the rooms.

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Sorry, but I don’t document well when I am in an altered state of Photo-Joy. I do not know what that wonderful circle is, but I think we can all agree that it is a thing of beauty.

I can identify the next three. (I’ll bet you could, too, without my input.) They were a part of the Communications wing and are examples of early movie-making equipment.

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Still to come: gears, gears and more gears.