On day 15 of my Paris Photography adventure, I decided to visit the Centre Georges Pompidou, which houses a large library, the largest modern art collection in Europe, and an acoustic research center. Apparently, it was open.
It’s a very bizarre-looking building, most notable for the tubular walkways and escalators on the outside.
The museum itself is huge, and there’s no way to see it all in one day. As with any good museum, it is a visual smorgasbord on which your eyes and camera can feast. I only made it through part of the top level. Here are a few images I thought were especially camera-worthy.
There is an extensive art bookstore on the ground level, including a large number of photography monographs. Perusing these shelves was just as enjoyable as the museum itself.
Another reason to go is the view from the top floor. A couple of friends also recommended the Les Georges restaurant there for the view and food, but the food was overpriced and the view was no better than in the hallway. However, you do get to stare at some nice roses.
In the evening, Dana and I decided to take the elevator all the way to the top of the Eiffel Tower.
By the way, here’s picture of Dana and I from the bus tour the night before. I’m the one in the back.
There are three floors to the Eiffel Tower. The first floor is reached by taking the stairs, and since I was carrying about a thousand pounds of camera gear, we opted for the elevator. The lines were surprisingly short when we got there just after 7 pm. The elevator takes you up to the second floor, where the best angle is pointing straight up.
Those small pyrimad-shaped structures are the lights that sparkle at night.
We then waited in another line that took us to the top. This second line took about 45 minutes, but it didn’t seem bad because you can take in the view while waiting.
Once at the top, you have a panoramic view of the city. It was a perspective I hadn’t gotten from my other aerial views. The downtown and large parks were much more prominent from this view, and I was better able to appreciate the uniform Parisian architecture and the unique road design. What a difference from the grids that characterize most large cities. That’s Trocadero Plaza in the foreground.
I thought this shiny telescope made a nice photographic subject. In this shot, I lined up the telescope as if someone was looking down at the city, giving the eye a nice line to follow. I opened my aperture to f/4 to give me a shallow depth of field focused just on the telescope, leaving the city beyond in a blur.
We ended up staying until just after sunset to see some of the lights come up in the city. While waiting in line on the second floor, the white sparkling lights came on in the Tower. This view was spectacular from where we stood.
It was a great way to end the evening, and it gave me yet one more perspective on the Eiffel Tower.
Tomorrow I’m going to take some street photos and catch up on a few remaining night shots.