Tuesday, December 25, 2012

And the Glory of the Lord Shall be Revealed

I was exhausted. I had just flown into Paris on the red eye flight and just wanted to go to my hotel to catch a couple of hours of sleep before heading out into the city. I had even let the hotel - a small boutique hotel in the 5eme -  know on my reservation form that I'd be checking in early. But upon my arrival to the front desk...

"Desole monsieur, but check in is at 1300."

"But I said that I'd be arriving early. See, it even says it on my confirmation."

"Mais monsieur, check in is at 1300"

There was nothing more to be done other than to head to a nearby cafe and suck down a enough cafe to try to remain conscious. That worked well for a while, but even I can only drink coffee for so long and besides, the morning rush was winding down, making the people watching less interesting by the momment. My maps indicated that there were several churches nearby and, with not much else to do, I figured I'd go exploring.

Whereupon entering one of (the?) oldest churches in Paris, I was greeted by the silence that comes from visiting at 0900 on Friday and nearly blinded by the early morning light streaming in from above the altar. I worked the scene with multiple cameras, trying to capture the majesty of the moment, but presently the light began to change, telling me it was time to move on.

The real fun came during editing time though. Getting the shot is usually half of the problem, but in this case, whatever challenges I faced at the scene, paled in comparison in trying to bring it all out through the editing process. I went through fully three versions of this photo (about six hours of work - easily a record for me) before finally managing to balance the blinding sunlight with the subdued foreground.

I'm still not sure if I fully achieved that balance but, as these classic cathedrals were deliberately made with imperfections, perhaps thats reflected in the photo as well.

Merry Christmas.

"And the glory of the LORD shall be revealed"

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