Stark Beauty

September 18, 2014  •  1 Comment

I have been trying to capture the stark beauty of this building for years and am still not content with the results I am getting.

 

 

EDF HQ La DefenseEDF HQ La DefenseCopyrighted Digital Photograph

Obsession?

 

Some things get stuck in your psyche and gnaw at your memories and thinking. I was already working in La Defense when this building grew out of the earth and took its place among the varied behemoths housing french corporate excellence. Opposite is the square, massive, financially and industrially dominant Total building, nearby is the ominous, black KGB-like headquarters of the nuclear industy’s Areva structure and this one - the headquarters of the French electricity industry EDF, unites the “energy“ of Total with the “industry” of Areva.

 

I loved at first sight the colour, shape, materials and overall “glitz” of EDF’s home. However, due to the constriction in space on the ground and the physics of optics, it is really hard to get either close to or distant from this building and capture it in its totality, without distortion.

 

I find myself trying to capture sections of it. Either the Starship Enterprise cover to the main doorway (not visible here), the gash sliced into its frontal area (partially shown here) or a portion of the upper levels, as captured in this image.

 

Persistance

 

On this occasion, there were scudding dark clouds in a powder blue sky, which enhanced the natural blue of the glass frontage and framed it in grey and blue. This is the look that has always entranced me.

 

Patience

 

I thought carefully about what kind of sky effect I wanted to choose as a frame to the building. I wanted to both include the fluffier, white edges, as well as the more menacing darker clouds. I knew from years of observation that this combination would deepen the colours and highlight the surface characteristics of the materials in a deeply intense way.

 

I took different exposures, watching the both their shape, as well as their positioning relative to the structure. This one is my personal choice of , perhaps a dozen captures.

 

 Settings

 

Camera: Nikon D800

Lens: 60mm f2.8

Focal Length: 60mm

Focus Mode: AF-C

Aperture: f/13

Shutter Speed: 1/1000s

Auto Focus -Area Mode: Single

Exposure Mode: Aperture Priority

Exposure Compensation : -0.7EV

Bracketing set to 3

Metering: Matrix

ISO Sensitivity: 320

Mounted on a Monopod

 

Does this sight please you? Do you hate it? Does the modernity of La Defense succeed or fail, according to your aesthetic preferences? Let me know.

 

Copyright Paul Grayson 2014


Comments

Eric(non-registered)
This is not so bad. Patience and I'm sure you'll get the exact feeling you have in your picture.
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