Photo Friday – Institut de France

Here’s an old favorite of mine from when I was just starting with photography.  This is a photo of the Institut de France (home of the Académie Française), which sits across the Seine from the Louvre.

This was taken during a weekend trip to Paris when I was studying at Oxford in the summer of 2008.  I originally took the photo in color but when looking at it afterward, there were a lot of problems with it.  The clouds were horribly blown out, the sky was a weird color of blue, and the because the two biggest things in the shot (the sky and the building) were mostly one color, the image became dominated by those bipolor colors.  Because I still loved the shot because of this beautiful building with great symmetry, I converted it to black and white.  By doing this you force the viewer to pay less attention to color and more attention to detail and texture.  For instance, you don’t notice that the building is all the same color because now you see the texture and patterns.  And the clouds being blown out is a cool style choice instead of an exposure mistake (would have been a great use of HDR but I didn’t know that at the time).

Institut de France – Home of the Acedémie Française
14 July 2008
Nikon D50  –  18-55mm kit lens
Aperture: f/10
Shutter Speed: 1/400
Focal Length: 18mm (27mm equivalent)


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