The main subject, right? Find here a selection of my favorite pieces of urban photography… but also the story behind it!

An unexpected duo

An unexpected duo. Cluj-Napoca, Romania, 2017.

An unexpected duo. Cluj-Napoca, Romania, 2017.

Continuing my love for tunnels and corridors with this new photo from an underground passage in Manastur, Cluj-Napoca, Romania. This time, it was a raining evening, which means that the people preferred to go under the road in this creepy looking corridor rather than facing the rain outside. Good for me!

I spent some time experimenting with backlighting and the dutch angle. I’ve also had an interesting “chat” with two drunk people 😀 It was indeed an interesting evening. And then, a weird duo formed by lookalikes of Annie Lennox and Jean-Michel Jarre appears in front of me at the other side of the corridor. Pretty outstanding in my book 😀 Hopefully my framing was already tested on previously passing people, I just waited for their shadows to be at the right spot, and voilà!

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More about this photo

For me, it’s important to share as much info as possible about the photos I take. Therefore, here are the EXIFs for this photo:

  • Camera: Canon 6D
  • Lens: Canon EF24-70mm f/2.8L II USM
  • Aperture: ƒ/2.8
  • Focale: 50mm
  • Shutter speed: 1/80s
  • ISO: 1600
  • Copyright: Pierre Pichot 2017, all rights reserved

Photo Essay – Urban Exploration: Heavy Machinery Plant – Cluj-Napoca

The forgotten factory. Cluj-Napoca, Romania, 2017.

One of the old, abandoned CUG halls. Cluj-Napoca, Romania, 2017.

First photo essay of the year with a one of my favourite subjects, urban exploration! Today I go to the CUG, Combinat de Utilaj Greu (Heay Machinery Plant), that was created in the 1970’s to become a state of the art plant. 30 years laters and the chute of the regime went by, the CUG is now the phantom of what it used to be.

Come with me for a visit of this highly rated urban exploration spot!

 

Under Marasti Bridge

Under Marasti Bridge. Cluj-Napoca, Romania, 2017.

Under Marasti Bridge, Cluj-Napoca, Romania, 2017. Get a print.

The Marasti bridge is a famous piece of infrastructure in Cluj-Napoca, Romania. Beside its main purpose, being a bridge 🙂 , it is also a place where the street artists of the region can express themselves. It has been chosen as the main canvas for a grafitti contest for the TiMAF, the Transylvanian International Music and Art Festival, a few years ago. This mix of architecture, street art and partial urban decay is a great start for a new Urban Exploration project that will be my main focus in 2017.

I wanted a contrast, with those static but illustrated pillars. Something moving, dynamic. Luckily for me, the roundabout under the bridge is a good opportunity for playing with lights. I just needed to way for the night, and let the magic happen. The magic of longer exposures, 30 seconds in this particular case. I have movement, I have dynamic, and I gain a fantastic light with those curvy rays.

While it was not necessarily a complicated photo to take, I’ve had to be a bit more creative to get an interesting, dynamic framing and avoid boring features such as walls. The solution? My dear dutch angle, that helped me maximise the light rays area, while creating a bunch of diagonal lines and helped me pushing the walls just outside the frame. There was only one caveat: it was a windy night, the camera was hanging over the road below me, it was not very confident. Hopefully, my sturdy tripod didn’t fail and kept everyone at bay!

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EXIFs:

  • Camera: Canon 6D
  • Lens: Canon EF24-70mm f/2.8L II USM
  • Aperture: ƒ/11.0
  • Focale: 24mm
  • Shutter speed: 30s
  • ISO: 100
  • Copyright: Pierre Pichot 2017, all rights reserved

Exit

Exit. Cluj-Napoca, Romania, 2017.

Exit. Cluj-Napoca, Romania, 2017. Get a print.

While I love winter for snowy, high key landscapes, it’s a bit the dead period for my urban photography. It’s cold, boring, there is no one in the streets. At least, I can play with the shops’ showcases and surprise people but, well, that’s a bit limiting in a small city like where I currently live. So, there is still a solution: finding closed spaces!

It got materialised with the newly extended underground passage at the Cluj-Napoca’s train station. The first set of corridors has already been featured on my Strangers in the Dark project, it has actually initiated it! The very first shot of this project was taken in this very underground passage. A new leg has been recently opened to the public, in the form of a looooong corridor. Great!

There is only one caveat: no one goes through this corridor! Besides the classic, full symmetry with leading lines to the exit dead in the center, I wanted to experiment with other, more creative framing. Well, with just 4 people (!) passing by this corridor in 90 minutes, I was quite far from being able to try them all. At least, I’ve been able to get one of the shots I’ve targeted from the beginning, this shot. Framing at an angle, with a clear exit sign, and a person passing by, going through the corridor to the exit. I really like the dynamic of this shot, thanks to the use of negative space and of the dutch angle.

Now… I just have to go back there and hope I’ll be able to get the shots I wanted, including some crazy long exposure ideas. But I think I’ll wait for hotter temperatures, even if it was indoor, it was not heated, waiting in the cold is not that fun 🙂

Do you like this photo? Why not getting an original, signed fine art print in limited edition?

EXIFs:

  • Camera: Canon 6D
  • Lens: Canon EF24-70mm f/2.8L II USM
  • Aperture: ƒ/5.0
  • Focale: 24mm
  • Shutter speed: 1/60s
  • ISO: 2000
  • Copyright: Pierre Pichot 2017, all rights reserved

A cold winter morning in Harghita

A cold winter morning in Harghita. Nagykadacs, Harghita, Romania, 2016.

A cold winter morning in Harghita. Cadaciu Mare, Romania, 2016. Get a print.

While I am definitively an urban guy, I enjoy taking trips to the countryside. It’s the occasion for me to try something else, give a shot (pun intended) to other techniques, target different subjects. I really think that a photographer must get out of his comfort zone once in a while and try different approaches. For me, it’s shooting the nature, searching for landscapes, leaving the fast and noisy urban life for a more relax and peaceful environment. I can take things slow.

My parents in law live in the middle of Transylvania, in Harghita. This region is filled with hills, mountain, forest and wildlife… the exact opposite of my day-to-day life! We spent a few days there for Christmas, and I decided to honour the beautiful, snowy landscapes with a few shots. I am very found of this high key, snow white look for winter landscapes. Making a huge effort to get up early in the morning (yeah, lazy guy in vacation…) I was lucky enough to get a bit of winter morning fog that gives this haze, this particular feeling that something is happening there, behind, but you can’t really see it.

I spotted this field a while ago, woke up early in the winter morning for grabbing a few shots. While unloading my gear, which took forever because I the gloves I had to wear because of the -14 degrees Celsius (!), my immaculate landscape was photobombed… by a dear! It was more than I could wish for 🙂 I really felt like a child on the Christmas morning. 3 days before Christmas.

Do you like this photo? Why not getting an original, signed fine art print in limited edition?

EXIFs:

  • Camera: Canon 6D
  • Lens: Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L II IS USM
  • Aperture: ƒ/8.0
  • Focale: 200mm
  • Shutter speed: 1/800s
  • ISO: 100
  • Copyright: Pierre Pichot 2016, all rights reserved