Fireworks in Avignon 14.07.2010

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The 14th of July is not our ‘Independence Day’, come on now, for France has always been an independent country! Our National Holiday commemorates the capture of the Bastille, a castle in Paris that was used as a prison, by the city’s inhabitants, in the beginning of the French Revolution (1789). Let’s mention that the Bastille was razed just after and a large square -that is round, by the way- established at its place. After the next revolution in 1830, the ‘July column’ was erected in the square centre and can still be seen nowadays. Tarascon castle, still in perfect state at present, looks very much like the former ‘oppression symbol’, when seen from the town. See a pic HERE. That anniversary day, in the evening, or the night before, balls and fireworks are very popular everywhere in France. From the photographer’s point of view, fireworks are a good and easy subject. A tripod is of course necessary. Choose a long exposure (2 to 5 sec.) in order to record a lot of long coloured streaks and to get luminous pictures. Focus the lens manually, disconnect the flashlight and try different apertures during the show. Good results seem to be guaranteed but beware of overexposure that ‘kills’ the colours. I think however that a fine photo of firewworks needs a good background and/or foreground illustrating the setting. The town’s monuments and reflections on water are particularly worth.

Where is the good spot to be found, for our good city of Avignon? We opt for the Fort-St-André at Villeneuve and we settle at the foot of this castle’s walls, near its gate. During the evening picnic, we can appreciate the sunset light. The air is not very limpid to-day, though. After dusk, the show begins and the shots take place right in front of the city. But I’m yet a bit disappointed: The monuments are poorly lit and the town seems to be plunged in the gloom!


Fortunately, the software enables us to enhance the light and to make appear the background more clearly. The show was worth spending the evening there, anyway. By the way, should we assault the Bastille again? I think we should.                 Huberaime

About Huberaime

Enseignant, né en 1955, passionné de photo, nature, rando et patrimoine provençal. N'hésitez pas à m'écrire si vous voulez gratuitement des photos non filigranées, faire des sorties avec nous ou simplement échanger des impressions:
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