Vista from Montparnasse Tower

This is our entry in Dutch goes the Photo!’s Tuesday Photo Challenge — Vista.

Many tourists ascend the Eiffel Tower to see the vistas of Paris. We have.  There are two problems when doing this. The first is that the most iconic structure in Paris, the Eiffel Tower itself, is not part of that vista. The second is that a nondescript skyscraper, the Montparnasse Tower, is part of that vista.

We had a one day stopover in Paris while coming home from Central Europe last month. We decided to take in the vista from the top of the Montparnasse Tower.  It costs less than visiting the Eiffel Tower and the view is better! This is one of the shots we got from the Montparnasse Tower Observation Deck.

 

 

Rustic Round Meets Modern Square

This is our entry in nancy merrill photography’s A Photo a Week Challenge: Squares and Circles.

When we visited Southeast Asia in 2017, one of the highlights was trekking combined with a homestay near Sa Pa, Vietnam. Many homes in the area have added on a room or two to host visitors, providing dinner and breakfast of interesting and filling local food.  Our homestay had a large shared dormitory-style room for guides and other guests, as well as a concrete addition with three private rooms and a shared bathroom.  The wall pictured below separated an inner common room from outside tables. The rustic round gourd hanging on the wall contrasts with the square panes of the modern window wall.  The windows reflect the everyday world of the family, especially the red laundry hanging over the fence to dry.

This photo was taken on February 16, 2017. Specs are:

Olympus TG-4,  ISO 100, f/2.4, 1/40 sec, 5.87 mm

For more photos from this trek, please see our posts:

Pho Bowls at Coc Ly Market,

Walking Bridge in Ta Van Village – Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge: Letters W or X and

Sa Pa Rice Terrace – Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: Harvest – Earth.

Budapest Chain Bridge Light Trails

This is our entry in Dutch goes the Photo!’s Tuesday Photo Challenge – Night.

Following a few hours of after-sunset photography atop Buda Castle Hill and Gellért Hill in Budapest, Hungary,  we set up tripods at the Pest end of Chain Bridge to capture light trails.  There is an island between the inbound and outbound lanes of traffic that is safe for pedestrians. To create the trails in the photo, a series of eight 30 second exposures was stacked in Photoshop layers, aligned, and merged into a single image using the lighten blending mode.

An interesting phenomenon that occurs when you have a good spot is that it attracts other photographers. After a few minutes here, several other people with cameras popped up.  They weren’t using tripods so they can’t have been taking this shot.

Cinderella May and Prince Charming Macron — Street Art

This is our entry in Lens-Artists Challenge #45 Street Art.

This beautifully-drawn street art in Paris, France, features Emmanuel Macron, President of the French Republic, and Theresa May, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom (UK) and Leader of the Conservative Party.  The tableau suggest that Cinderella May, with her iconic pearl necklace and a UK sash, is leaving Prince Charming Macron behind with the UK’s (symbolic) star from the flag of the European Union (EU).  One item missing is a Brexit clock about to strike midnight. We wonder: Had this street art been composed in the UK, how would it have been different?

 

This photo was taken on April 9, 2019. Specs are:

Canon 200D, ISO 200, f/9.0, 1/80 sec, 29 mm.

Freedom of Expression at the Palais de Tokyo

This is our entry in iScriblr’s FREEDOM OF EXPRESSION” Challenge! PHOTOGRAPH!.

A very popular interactive exhibit in the Palais de Tokyo in Paris is a set of white backlit screens. Visitors pose behind the screens for the enjoyment of spectators on the other side.   We spent quite a few minutes here photographing displays of uninhibited freedom of expression.

After a few minutes, it became obvious that the camera, a Canon EOS Rebel SL2 (known in Europe as a Canon 200D), was also exhibiting its freedom of expression. The screens were white, the backlights were white, and the images seen by the human eye were black figures on a white background.  The backgrounds captured by the camera were shades of blue, yellow, green, purple and orange. Not white. The images captured by our other camera, a Fuji X100T, were black figures on a white background, as were the images captured on the smart phones of other spectators near us.

When we have more time, we will try to figure out why the Canon decided to express its artsy side at that time and place: it has not repeated that behavior since.  Was it due to the screen material? The camera sensor?  If anyone else has experienced this false color artifact, or knows why it happens, we would really like to know.

This photo was taken on April 10, 2019. Specs are:

Canon 200D, ISO 6400, f/3.5, 1/250 sec, 22 mm.

The Budapest Eye

We have always been fascinated by Ferris wheels, so it is no surprise that we admired (and photographed) the Budapest Eye from many angles before (and after) we rode it.  The Budapest Eye — also known as the Sziget Eye — towers 65 meters high over Erzsébet Square.  Only St. Stephen’s Basilica (and the Budapest Parliament Building) are taller at 96 meters.

The first photo was taken from Gellért Hill on the evening we arrived in Budapest.  Saint Stephen’s Basilica is the imposing building behind it.  We had hiked partway down from the 140 meter peak of Gellért Hill, which rises above the Danube River. The 25 second exposure captures the rotation of the wheel.

The second photo was taken as we stood in line for our ride just after sunset. At 2700 Hungarian Forint (HUF) per ride, slightly more than $9 USD, for a minimum of three rotations or 8 – 10 minutes, it is a pricey thrill, but worth it.  Calculating from time stamps on our photos, we rode for at least 15 minutes.

The third photo was taken from directly beneath the arc of 42 cabins on the wheel.  Each cabin is sized for four to six people.

This post is our entry in nancy merrill photography’s A Photo a Week Challenge: Three of a Kind and Dutch goes the Photo!’s Tuesday Photo Challenge – Wheel.

Architectural Harmony of the Mysore Maharaja Palace

This is our entry in Lens-Artists Challenge #44 – Harmony.

The Maharaja’s Palace, built in 1907, is a huge building in the Indo-Saracenic style of architecture in Mysore, India. It was the seat of the Wodeyar maharajas until the creation of the modern Indian state.  One fabulous but gaudy area of the palace is the Public Durbar (Audience) Hall. The repeated granite columns and stucco ceilings provide a stunning sense of harmony and near symmetry. It was built to impress and it does. As Mel Brooks said in History of the World, Part 1, “It’s good to be the king.”