Près de la Seine

I arrived in Paris from Geneva, and had the first evening by myself, so decided to wander around along the Seine, and then head to the Louvre after sunset. It rained a bit when I was travelling from Orly airport to Paris, so there were plenty of puddles. I took the cover photo above from a bridge, then spotted a few puddles down by the river, and decided to head down there to see if I could get some reflections.

I took this photo of Notre Dame lying down on the ground to be able to fit the entire reflection in the frame. Normally I almost always prefer people in my photos, but now I can start to understand landscape photographers a bit more.

After a quick pizza I headed over to the Louvre.

One of the pyramids at the Louvre. This time rather than lying down on the ground I instead used the camera’s live view feature holding it down just above ground level.

I headed inside, and started to wander around. I had heard that the Louvre was big, and the buildings looked pretty sizeable from the outside, but I had not quite realised how big it actually was. The Louvre is huge. You turn a corner, expecting a small room, and a whole new museum opens up.

Some Roman statue. I probably should have made a note of what it was.
It is pretty fascinating how they could turn a block of marble into something that looks quite life like.
All over the museum there were people sitting or standing drawing statues and paintings.
Willem Stueuerwald “Ruines de l’abbaye de Heisterbach” (1863). I am amazed at how the old masters managed to capture the light in the scenes.
There are big paintings and there are big paintings. Here I wanted to include a person for scale.
In the south section of the museum they host Mona Lisa. There were signs shepherding people to the painting.
There was a barricade a few steps away from Mona Lisa. This must have been low season, because I have seen photos of bigger crowds. Without too much hassle I made it to the front and got a picture of the painting.
Mona Lisa. I had heard it would be small, so was surprised that it was actually not all that small. It is 77×53 cm according to Google.
Anne-Louis Girodet-Trioson “Atala Portee au Tombeau”. Some of these master painters had an amazing sense for light.
This painting was so big that I could not fit it all in the frame no matter how far back I went.

Exhausted, but quite content, I headed back to the hotel after only having seen what must have been a fraction of the artwork on display at the Louvre. I had an early start the following day. You can see the Paris dance photos in the “Sous Le Ciel de Paris” blogpost.

— Johannes

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