In Paris, you’re never short on beautiful views and sights to see, but getting that perfect, Instagram-worthy shot isn’t always as easy as it may seem. I moved to France full-time in 2011. Being an expat is sometimes challenging, but I’m already enamored with the beauty and charm of the city, I wanted to share with others what makes Paris so special to me.
I work with and create images every day, and in doing so I’m also able to share my perspective and view of Parisian life. Now, almost seven years later, I feel lucky to call this city my home.
To help you capture Paris like a pro, here are my top tips for capturing the best views of the City of Light.
1.Think outside the box
Sometimes the best view isn’t the one you might expect. While it’s nice to get a close-up view of the Eiffel Tower, some of my favorite shots of the Iron Lady are actually in the surrounding area, not right in front of it. Think side streets such as Rue de l’Université or a bit farther away, Avenue de Camoëns. Both of these streets provide stunning views of the Iron Lady and create a more interesting scene.
2. Take the road (or bridge) less traveled.
The Pont Alexandre III is gorgeous, but one of my favorite little Parisian bridges is the Passerelle Debilly, which is more industrial but offers a great view of the Eiffel Tower in the background.
3. Timing is everything
To take your photos from basic snapshot to postcard perfection try to photograph Paris at sunrise for beautiful light, and as an added bonus, far fewer tourists crowding your shots. Golden hour is also a beautiful time for photos, and you may be surprised to hear, but shooting on an overcast day will also provide lighting perfection.
Cloudy, overcast weather is perfect for bright photos with beautiful, even light because the clouds act as a natural softbox.
4. Try a new perspective
Favorite sights such as the Louvre and Notre Dame Cathedral make for lovely images, but they usually come with the inevitable crowds of tourists. Instead, try to angle your photo up to capture the details and cut off the crowds below. These shots can be especially pretty during cherry blossom season when you can try to capture the cathedral with beautiful blossoms. Another favorite shot of mine is the view of Notre Dame peeking out from Jean XXIII Garden, taken from Pont Saint-Louis. Capture it close-up for a detail shot or wide and you’ll get the lovely Café Esmeralda included.
5. Don’t be afraid to get lost!
Exploring the streets of Paris is one of the best ways to come across interesting scenes to photograph. There are charming streets and cute corners all over the city, so explore the surrounding area of various famous sights and you’ll discover some amazing places.
With breathtaking views, stunning architecture and sights to see, Paris is already one of the most photogenic cities around, and I hope these tips will help you capture some memorable moments in the City of Light.