Dark clouds threatening again. Commuters wait eagerly for the next boat to dock for a lift to the center of the city. (click on picture to enlarge)
Leica M9 with 60mm Hexanon at F1.4, 1/4000, ISO200
We are already at week 6 of the Street Photography Now Project. This week instruction was « Never overlook a cliché » by Artem Zhitenev. It got me to reflect on what can be considered as a cliché picture, especially in Paris. Indeed Paris, together with New York, is historically the city most concurred by street photographers and has probably been shot upside down throughout the last century. It makes it difficult to innovate and showcase the city in a different way then what has been done before. In some ways, any shot taken in Paris becomes almost instantly a cliché and when I look at my archives, I am sure that a very high percentage would fit the cliché category. But in the end, does it matter ? What has been done before has never been done in 2010, so even if so themes and composition are recurring throught the years, we shoot yours times with our own vision.
Making abstracton fo it, if I would have to define a cliché shot in Paris, I would mention, love, glamour, art, bohemia and the great humanist tradition. This is what I think I found in the shot I submitted. It was taken by the Alexander III bridge as this girl waved towards her boyfriend for a reunion. (click on picture to enlarge)
Leica M9 with 35mm Summilux Asph at F1.4, 1/3000, ISO200
I took a picture of this Mercedes in a street by Les Halles, probably attracted by its weird orange color. A couple of minutes later, I crossed path with that lady and automatically took her picture. That reason became clearer while reviewing the sequence of these shots : it looks like our brain has an inconscious short term memory of colors and structures, or who knows, a special ability to detect a link between a car and its owner. (click on picture to enlarge)
Both shots with Leica M9, 50mm Summicron, 1/500, ISO200