Somehow it wasn’t until this winter that I noticed how wonderful December light is in Paris. The low sun casts a wonderfully theatrical spotlight, and shorter days mean you’re more likely to experience the feeling of early morning or dusk. All those layers of extra atmosphere between the light and the lens…it’s like nature’s Instagram filter.
I must be getting more into photography because I find myself doing something new: chasing sunlight. I often quicken my pace, sometimes to a slow jog, to reach a sunny spot before a cloud steals away its ambiance.
When I come across a scene and the mood is right I feel an excited sense of urgency, as if I’m playing Hungry Hungry Hippos and all the potentially award-winning photos surround me like white marbles. I’ve got to gobble up as many as possible before time’s up.
When giving tours of Paris I sometimes talk about the Impressionists, and how that beyond all the charming subject matter what they were really painting was light. For those guys, the light of 2pm was vastly different from 4pm, 6pm.
It’s something we mere mortals rarely notice, but it’s one of the lovely nuances of our world, isn’t it?