For the past week I've been in Paris with my 11-year old son, Cole. It's the first time for both of us. He's been on spring break and I've been taking a break from work. We've also both beeen trying our hand at street photography Paris-style. This is, after all, where street photography got its start, first with Eugene Aget and followed soon after by Brassai (a Hungarian shooting in Paris) and Henri Cartier-Bresson. By no means do I place myself in such great company; I'm simply inspired by it.
What has not inspired me is the unseasonably cold weather (a high of 4° C or 41°F), the crowds, and the rapid pace. Shivering plays hell with image sharpness, even if your camera or lens has image stabilization. The crowds offered plentiful subject matter; that is, if you like shots of people clothed for Arctic conditions. You've got to move fast though, because busy, distracted people think nothing of stepping between you and a prospective subject. And then there are the countless other tourists with their smartphones and tablets, attempting to frame and focus photos with the sun at their backs and shining directly onto their screens. Tourists or not, scenes of people staring dumbly at their smartphones while they play games or listen to music are so common that I refuse to photograph them any more.
This was shot just outside of the Eileen Gray exhibition at the Georges Pompidou Center. It's the sort of place I could shoot all day, especially because it's indoors and the crowds are less insane that at the Louvre.
I haven't regretted my decision to travel light though. My son doesn't mind carrying either one of my cameras as we walk for miles each day and neither do I. I'll publish a portfolio of my results when I get back. These two shots will have to hold you in the meantime.