Sacré-Cœur on Montmartre Hill

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

Sacré-Cœur, or the Basilica of the Sacred Heart of Paris, stands 83 meters above the top of the butte (hill) Montmartre, which extends 130 meters above sea level, for a total height of 213 meters.  (Sacré-Cœur is the tall domed monument surrounded by the green space in the middle of the photo.)  The photo was taken from the top level of Montparnasse Tower, which itself stands 210 meters tall, putting Sacré-Cœur essentially at eye level for the photographer.

 

This photo was taken during the blue hour just before 9 PM on April 24, 2019.  Specs are:

Canon 200D, ISO 1250, f/5.6, 1/200 sec, 135 mm.

 

 

Prague’s John Lennon Wall

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

The John Lennon wall in Prague, Czech Republic, was created following the 1980 assassination  of John Lennon: at that time, it contained only one image of Lennon and the lyrics from a song.  The wall changes continually and has a history of challenging authority.  Exactly one week after we took this photo, on Earth Day, the wall was repainted entirely by the protest group Extinction Rebellion to demand government action on climate change.

 

This photo was taken on April 15, 2019. Specs are:

Canon 200D, ISO 100, f/9, 1/50 sec, 18 mm.

 

 

 

A Road between Eastern and Western Europe

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

The Charles Bridge in Prague, built in 1347, was the only road across the Moldau River — connecting Eastern and Western Europe — until 1841. There is a tiny, almost obscure, door at the base of the bridge’s tower which opens to a long flight of steps leading to the top (for a fee — it’s still Prague, after all).  The tower is the only way to see the bridge without wading through a sea of tourists and vendors.

There is also a good view of the bridge from the deck of one of the scenic river cruises. The view is nice, but the cruise is hampered by all the locks along that stretch of the Moldau.

The final photo is an eye-level view taken while crossing the pedestrian road across the bridge. We found it to be the least interesting way to see the bridge.

38 Seconds Over Paris

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

The Montparnasse Tower juts above the Paris skyline. Its elevators are the fastest in Europe: 38 seconds between the ground floor and the 56th.  A countdown clock in the elevator — where you would expect to see floor numbers — flashes rapidly as the elevator ascends or descends.  38 seconds of elevator plus three more flights of stairs takes you to the 210 meter high Observation Deck hovering above Paris. It provides a 360 degree panoramic view extending 40 km in all directions (on a clear day), including the Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame Cathedral, the Louvre, Montmartre, Sacre Coeur, the Pantheon, the Invalides, the Arc de Triomphe — in fact, everything but Montparnasse Tower.  The photo below shows the one view you can’t see from the Observation Deck.

 

This photo was taken on April 24, 2019, with a Canon 200D.

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.

 

 

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.

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.