Friday, November 16, 2007

Headless in Montmartre


Got a funny feeling I've already posted this one, but never mind. Can you spot this chap's rather serious problem?

He's called St. Denis, the first bishop of Paris, who died around 273 of the modern era.

Apparently, the Romans were already sick of fighting the natives and when this guy started getting up their noses too they decided to torture him and finally chop his head off on the slopes of Montmartre.

'Denis l'Ennemi' (Dennis the Menace, in English), as he was known at the time, was having none of it though. Unperturbed and undaunted, with a faith as strong as his (so the fable goes), he calmly picked his head up and sauntered off to a town a few miles north of Paris which is now named after him.

Almost all of my shots were straight up and down, or horizontal, (i.e. no tilting) but the subject was tricky. I wanted to clearly show the fact that his head wasn't attached to his body, which isn't actually extremely obvious when looking at the statue in real life. I also wanted to keep the cross on his tunic, which is an important element in the story, but his head being well ahead of his body made the composition an unusual challenge.

In the end I went with the only shot I took at an angle. I both helped the composition, still giving him some space to gaze wistfully into, and adding a little drama because the head now looks as though it might be falling having just been chopped off. That's my take on it anyway.

=> (View Flickr Slide Show - November 2007)
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© 2007 Sab Will / Paris Set Me Free

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