Nick Pegg

Word and Imagery Artist from Canada.

Tag: France

Is it broken?

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After jumping off the stage at the end of his set… Marcel, Lead vocals and guitar of band called Die Hexe , announced to the audience that he thought he broke his ankle.

For the rest of the show, he was be asked probably around 100 times.. if it was broken..

no word yet from the doctor whether or not it is actually broken.. but pretty punk rock regardless of the outcome.

Canon 60D Kit lens blah blah blah

Brent.

Brent Rambler

Brent Rambler of August Burns red at #KOIFest15 KOI Music Festival in Kitchener ON.

An Hour On A Street Corner. (and I post 5 pictures)

On May 29th, 2013, I spent an hour on the corner of ‘Place Charles De Gaulle’ et ‘Champs Elysee’ waiting for some of our group to get Ice cream. Which takes an hour in Paris near tourist areas.

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I guess I should mention that this corner is the famous tourist spot to take pictures of the ‘Arc de Triomphe’. The fact that we had to spend a whole hour in one of the most cliche tourist spots in Paris, really drove my inner hipster quite mental. – Because of this, I decided to sit on the curb of Champs Elysee street and only take pictures from that vantage point. (I don’t really know why I thought this was a good idea, but I did it.

Anyway, here are some of the pics I liked.

Then I walked to the cliche photo taking spot

Arc De Triomphe

I could say lots about these pics. – But…..

Etiquette.

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So, let us observe this gentlemen here.

At first glance, we see he is playing an accordion on a bridge. – This photo was taken May 29, 2013 in Paris, Somewhere near Notre Dame. So it is a very well tourist populated area, loaded with street performers and beggars.

Now that we have our pre-stereotype-label-homeless-poor-old-guy image in our head we will take a look a little deeper at this photo.

While walking to find a coffee shop that would give us a free glass of water (impossible to find in Paris) we crossed this bridge. – If you have been reading my other posts or following this blog you will, again, know I was trying to push myself out of my photography comfort zone and point the lens at people on the street. –

I spotted this man from a distance and started to brainstorm how I was going to capture the essence of him without being to obvious. The reason I try to be discreet is because I don’t want people to strike a pose. Example whenever I would shoot my friend Graham he would pose. – When people see a camera they instantly feel they need to change who they are in that moment to become a more photo-better-them…. –

I snapped a few shots from an angle, but knew that wasn’t the shot I wanted. – I was imagining the straight on black and white cliche shot of a person on the street. – Well the above picture is my attempt at that.

In order to get the shot, I walked directly in front of the guy cranked my lens to 50mm, half pressed to shutter button to focus the lens, and took the picture. – Buy the time all of this happened, my friend here… smiled. – He spotted the camera and boom became someone else. – – A side note, in France, smiling in a photo is known as a very American thing to do. The french think you look like a joke or a Jim Carey goof when we crank out a big smile in a photo. – So, upon review of this photo I was taken back by the fact that he smiled a little bit.

I took a few more shots of this guy and threw a euro into his coin box. – I gave the guy money for two reasons. 1. He was playing music on the street. 2. When I take a picture of someone I feel like I am in a sense stealing or raping that person of who they are and all their private being of what they are doing. It’s hard to explain, but a picture can label a person as so many things that they are not. So after making him subject to a on the spot photo shoot, I gave him a few euro’s of compensation. Just so I felt better about myself, even though I did not nearly give enough money in comparison to what “he” is worth,

OK, continuing the theme of picture labeling people. You may look at the above photo and see what you would say is a lower class man without a job trying to make enough money to live. You may even be hesitant to give money to this man because you worry he may spend the money on alcohol, cigarettes or even worse, in your precious opinion, drugs. – well, let me explain, just by looking at the photo, why that would be a wrong impression.

Side note, I could be wrong, I do not know this man and I also had thoughts of the above sentences.

First notice the instrument. A world renowned Honner. That, is not a cheap instrument. Observe its condition. Second, his hat, Mint. Third, his playing posture, says to me he has had formal training in the instrument, probably at a young age. Fourth, His pants are wrinkle free with s sign of a seem on the left leg, tells me they were ironed recently. Also, they are rolled up above the shoe, showing proper outdoor etiquette. Fifth, shoes are shined. Sixth, his over all attire was perfectly planned for the weather of that particulate day in Paris. To me that says he probably checked the weather before leaving the house this morning.

I would say, This man is just bored and loves to play his accordion for people as a hobby on the street of Paris.

It’s funny, because I’m using stereotypes to explain why this guy is not a stereotype.

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We carried on our way to a coffee shop for a hour or so, then realized we need to go back to Notre Dame to meet up with some friends. – We crossed the bridge again, this time on the other side of the street. I was able to grab some more shots of this guy on the way back, this time hoping he wouldn’t spot me and smile. – He did notice me, but didn’t pose. –

I really like this picture because the blur in the feet of the man on the cell phone. This is fairly accurate of culture now a days. Showing how wrapped up we are in our lives and failing to see the beauty of the music being played by the accordion player right next to us.

I messed the focus up on this shot though. Its a real crisp shot of the railing of the bridge.

oops.

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This is the shot I imagined when I spotted the man playing. – I love this photo and am proud to post it. – For many reasons.

I think I like it so much because the shot actually bugs me now after editing it. – I look at it and kick myself for not walking a few meters to the right and take the picture square on parallel with the railing. – You can tell I’m standing on an angel because of the sidewalk on the lower third of the photo. As well, the slant of the railing. I could fix these things, but that would be like showing something that I am not. It would become a fake picture.

I should have taken the extra time to properly set the shot up, but in my defense the rest of my group was already across the busy intersection to my right and I was waiting to attempt to get a shot of the man without any pedestrians walking by and that took some time and fear of loosing the group I was with.

The French Subway.

The Subway in France is quiet and built by Canadians. – That’s all I have to say.

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Not sure what station this is from, you could probably zoom in if you are familiar with the french subway system and figure out where it is. –

This shot may seem like it is taken of a lady walking away from the train as it is leaving. – But I actually took this shot to try and capture the older lady in the background. I noticed when we pulled into the stop that she was sitting on the bench. I assumed that she would get up once the doors open on the train and get in. But she did not. She remained sitting in that position. –

A helpless wonder came over me and I couldn’t come to a conclusion of what her story might be.

I don’t ride the subway a lot. Where I’m from we only have buses. So the idea of someone just sitting in a station and not eager to jump on the train is a totally new perspective. – In fact, the next time I’m free in a city with a Metro, I am planning on spending a few hours sitting in a station to observe and interesting culture that I would say is rarely observed with intent.

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Graham

This is Graham. He is a friend of mine. – I like this photo because over the course of the trip I tried to get a shot of Graham acting natural but he always spotted me pointing the lens at him. – I quite possibly have over 50 shots of Graham making a funny face. Anyway, this was one of my favorite shots that I snapped of him. – Also, I think the Black and White really turned out nice. –

The best part of this photo is that it is actually out of focus. – My attempt was to focus the lens on Grahams face, in which I did, but if you have ever ridden on A subway before you will know that it is not the smoothest of rides. So, Initially I focused on his face, but just as I did my body swayed backwards a bit just slightly pulling the face out of focus enough that (to me at least) it makes this picture hard to look at because your eyes are searching for the focal point. –

The thing I don’t like about this shot is the ladies head to the left side. – It almost makes the entire photo rubbish. – However, It dawned on me that, having the the head in the picture gives another accurate depiction of a subway car, and shows just how crammed we are in the moving metal veins of the city.

I Guess He Fell Eh?

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To soon?

I don’t know much about the Eiffel tower other than the fact it was built for a worlds fair pre World War II, and they told the people they would be tearing it down right after. Not sure if they were lying about that or they realized it was a cool thing after they built it. I heard it was built in the Italian sector of Paris.
Also, that Hitler chose not to destroy any of Paris during WW2, the tower as well obviously.

I also, know nothing about this Mr Eiffel fellow they named it after, nor, did I wikipedia it or read the plaque located about a meter out of frame of this photo.

I am posting this picture because I am ashamed to say that I don’t know who he is.

I noticed that once every 5 minutes someone would stop to look at it. This monument/Statue is located directly under the belly of the tower near the most populated of the four legs of the structure. Yet, no one was there. A thousand people at any given moment,  handful to see the man himself. –

Think about it.

Eiffel.

Continuing on the tour of Paris. I had to have a blog post about the Eiffel Tower.

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So, this is the crew I was with in France. (Me on the far right) – Here is the Cliche pic in front of the Tower. – Great shot though taken by our tour manager, pretty much sums up the people on the team. – To me at least.

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So, the first thing we did once we reached the under belly of the Eiffel Tower, was check to see if it had Wifi. The Funny part was that it did. – Well not really actually, it had its own network that teamed up with various add companies and the Official Eiffel Tower app for Iphone to better aid your intricate tour of such a marvelous structure. – Basically, a money grab to make you pay for something that will tell you to look left and right. – We chose to just shadow tour groups and get the tour for free.

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So here it is, Nothing special About this shot, It’s over exposed, Cropped terribly, focus is just good enough to be acceptable, and just a crap photo.

This is a picture of the 669th step of the Eiffel Tower and I absolutely Love this photo for how it looks. – To me, a picture can be beautiful even if it looks like rubbish. –

We ended up taking the stairs because, we could not justify in our college/musician budget heads to pay the 20 Euro’s for the lift, when the stairs only cost 3.50 Euro’s. – The main reason I love this picture so much is because I took it in great anguish and despair from my friggin legs feeling like there were on fire and being remarkably out of breath for just climbing some surprisingly shallow steps. – There was a line of people going both up and down these stairs, so I took this shot really quickly on the way by. Immediately after this I went a fell to the ground over exaggerating my fatness and trying to be funny about it.

But at the end of it, I can say I took that “I took the stairs of the Eiffel Tower” – I recommend it actually.

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I love this photo, Because everyone looks like Ants. – Taken from Level 1 of the tower only accessible by the stairs.

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Eric

The most common pose on the main level of the tower is this of the horizontal smart phone attempting to capture as much light as possible to gather the outlines of each building in the distance. Truly a remarkable task for such small devices without just capturing a complete overexposed sky.

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Graham

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I never intended to show a picture of the skyline in this blog post. Reasons being 1. I thought it would make for an interesting perspective if I only posted pictures of other things from the tower rather than the view 2. I’m terrible at editing anything other than a sunset of a glassy bay. So, I am self-conscious of posting a world famous view all hacked and over edited. But I felt I should at least post a taste of what the view is like.

I don’t remember what side of the tower this is from. But this pretty much sums it up. – I like this black and white because the red from the roofs (rooves?) really makes a great contrast. – and it doesn’t have any sky in it. Sort of birds eye.

You can spot Notre Dame if you know what you are looking for. 🙂

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Eric, Graham, Chris

Just a few dudes on the Eiffel Tower.

Eric, the guy with the awesome Mustache was really affected by the allergies on this trip.. look, you can tell.

Chris on the right is actually Vlogging this picture. He vlogged our entire tour in France. Over 20 days. Check them out here – http://www.youtube.com/channel/UCfIYwihd9QROhAZWdT0Ug2Q

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We walked around for a bit, but the view get continuous and boring quite quickly if you let it.

We also saw some undercover security guards tackle a pick pocket. They hit him so hard it knocked his shoes off. We just happened to be facing the right direction at the right time. Sorry no pic.

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We walked down after about 30 mins. The final stretch of stairs on the way down are spiral, I stopped traffic to grab this shot. – I thought it was worth it.

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Eric and Graham made it.

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Chris, Eric , Solveig

A perfect end photo.

No comment.

Thanks for reading.

Intrigue.

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This picture intrigues me.

Again, If you have read my other posts, this shot was taken as an attempt to step out of my photography comfort zone and start pointing the camera at people rather than objects.

I spotted this guy underneath the Eiffel tower by a garbage can. I assumed right away that he was a local of the area here in Paris. The picture shows him reaching in his pocket. The context is, this man was feeding the few pigeons that you see scattered around him.

A lot of people would label this man as something of strange. Example, the old lady that feeds the birds in Central Park, New York or the guy that talks to himself under the CN tower in Toronto. Well, this guy was simply feeding some pigeons underneath the Eiffel tower. Nothing wrong with that. – Some people, including myself would have a form of label on this man, and even go as far as label him an outcast. – All he is doing is feeding some seeds to some birds.

The part of the picture that intrigues me the most, is the one thousand people behind him, waiting in line to climb up a giant metal sculpture. And we label him the strange one.

But maybe my perspective is wrong because his shoes are very shinny. And that means something.

You be the Judge.

Sketch.

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So, while footloose in Paris. I made the effort to step out of my photography comfort zone and intentionally take some pictures of people. – This was the first photo of that effort. – This guy just screams character and some form of story to tell. – He was sitting on this window ledge and sketching Le/La “Bibliothèque Mazarine“. This is located directly across the river from the Louvre, as well the “Lock Love Bridge”. (or what ever it’s called)- 

Come to think of it, This guy could have been one of those street painters who sold their quite impressive art work around these parts of Paris. But, I’m not sure, this guy just seemed way to relaxed to be one of those high strung street hustlers.

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Bikes in Paris.

While in Paris, France on May 29, 2013. – I came down with a slight obsession with trying to capture some moving bokeh motorcycle shots. – I first tried shooting these at 18mm but found the shot to just be to big, so it wasn’t until I cranked my 18- 55mm lens to around 45-50mm that shots started to turn out. – Here are a few shots that Turned out alright, with some help of Lightroom.

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This was the first one that I snapped, while waiting to cross the street. Behind it is the famous “Lock Love bridge” – I was pretty excited when I looked at this photo. 1. because the rider and bike are in focus, and 2. because the composure of the rider and the size of the bike is just fantastic. – Along with capturing the parallel’ness of the cross walk lines.

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This one was just a few blocks down from the first shot I took. – I gained a few strands of patience to get this shot.|| I noticed a the street was fairly busy, while thinking about this a few guys on European Harley Davidsons flew by me while passing and weaving through traffic. – I decided to stand for a few minutes and wait for the photo opportunity to come buy again. – I saw another couple guys on large motorcycles coming and as they wizzed by I missed the shot, due to some out of focusness of moving the camera. – By this point I had committed to obtaining the shot, so I waited another minute, all while keeping an eye on where the rest of my group was heading. – Finally this fello’ on a moped zipped by, and I snapped this shot. –

Some times a little patience can turn out cool.

That’s the world famous Louvre museum in the back ground.

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This is an actual Harley Davidson in Paris France. – The catch is that, there is a law in France that says your motorcycle cannot go over 100HP. So, these Harleys didn’t have much kick to them when they rode by. – For this shot, I was standing on the south side of the Arc de Triomphe, right on the corner before the cars enter into the massive round about surrounding the Arc.

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Here is another a few meters from the last shot. This time two bikes cruised by. I love this shot because the one bike is out of focus but the left one isn’t. Also, the is a nice solar lens flare happening that really sharpens up this photo as a black and white for some reason.

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A common theme I was noticing, as I was taking my fare share of shots and trying to watch my back for pick pockets. Was that when I pointed the lens at people riding motorcycles by, it some how instantly drew their attention to me as to send their glare through my lens. Which they did most times. As I was making eye contact through with them through my Canon 60D and 18-55 kit lens, for some reason i felt like I was invading peoples personal worlds or bubbles. A few times the glares shocked me enough to not take the picture. But eventually I found it quite tasteful to grab the shot of someone glaring at me while I capture them speeding by. It’s like locking a moment in time that would happen so fast our brains would really process or be seen by others but you and the other person of glare. – Here is an example.