Friday, 15 July 2016

Bordeaux Waterfront by Night

For several years I have been interested in the problems of photographing a nocturnal illuminated waterfront from the deck of a ship. I made my first efforts in Gibraltar and Livorno from the deck of the cruise liner Boudicca.  I tried again on the Danube and in Dubrovnik. My most recent efforts were on the Rhone / Saone last year.

Many of the results had certain aesthetic qualities, but sharpness was rarely amongst these. This year I owe a special vote of thanks to the two captains of the Scenic Diamond. They contrived to balance their vessel almost motionless between the current and the tide, providing a remarkably stable platform for photographers.

I set up my travelling tripod and cable remote for the shutter of my new (to  me) Sony A580. For once I did not mess up my choice of settings. The result was a series of photographs that were pretty satisfactory directly from the camera.

The main features of the photographs are the palatial frontage of Place de la Bourse and the many stone arches of the Pont de Pierre. Throw in the spires of the cathedral and other churches, streetlights and beautiful reflections on the surface of the River Garonne and you have a captivating set of ingredients for magical evening scenes.