We’ve already received a lot of wonderful feedback, and we’d like to thank you very much for that. Our main driver for the project was your experience. We wanted to deliver something that mimics what would catch your eye on a walk as closely as possible, so you could take a break and escape to the streets of Paris whenever you like.
Currently, The Paris Journal is available for iPad and iPhone. We are working on making it available for Kindle, Galaxy and Android.
Thank you so much for your comments and support. We really hope you enjoy the virtual escape.
To provide a little background on how The Paris Journal came about, I wanted to share a little of the long process that lead us here, including a few failures along the way.
Although there are many things about this project that are breaking new ground for us, the aesthetic point of view behind it hasn’t changed since Nichole first started posting photos in 2009. The aim then, as it is now, was to take the viewer to Paris on a vicarious walk around the city.
While Nichole was shooting the Paris Color Project, I was with her every step of the way. Because of my background in film, I was thinking about video as a narrative vehicle, and how it could compliment the intimate details she was photographing to bring the viewer as close to Paris as possible.
The first foray into video was a series of test videos called “One Place, One Time,” shot around Montmartre and the Marais, and partially shared on the old blog at the end of 2009. The idea was to keep them unedited and un-hosted in order to create a direct, voyeuristic experience. The hope was that a series of these unedited, one-minute snapshots would cumulatively capture the essence of a neighborhood.
But the videos were, well, awful. By refusing to edit, they had no real point of view, and by being formulaic, they had no story. However they made it clear that if the videos were to create the sense of walking around a neighborhood, they would need to be:
1. Focused. You can’t capture the essence of a place by filming everything.
2. Chronological. 50 videos of 50 street corners don’t add up to a cohesive story of a neighborhood just because you shoot them the same way. You need to create a sense of time.
3. Local: If you want to deliver a human experience, think on a human scale. Go for a slow walk and see how much ground you really cover. It’s less than you think.
The real revelation happened about a year ago while working on a potential project about Paris Light for Chronicle Books. I realized that Nichole’s photography and my videos could work together to tell a simple, intimate story of a walk if they were actually structured like a walk – linear (morning to night) and local (where we walked during that time). Each book would only cover one neighborhood over the course of one day.
Along the way, there were many more experiments, including writing commentary as if it were an actual journal. In that case, we found that the more we editorialized, the more it became about our experience instead of yours. The story had to be exclusively visual.
Creating The Paris Journal was a very slow and sometimes frustrating process: Years of trial and error, seven trips, months of editing and compiling, and some pretty steep technological learning curves (apps!), but it was worth it. We are really thrilled with the final concept and with the first volume. 125 photos and 14 videos are integrated into a digital book that tells the story of one day in one Paris neighborhood, from morning to night. It’s a true labor of love, and we can’t wait to share it with you this Tuesday.
After many months, THIS is happening in two weeks.
Coming to iPads and iPhones May 14.
We can’t wait to show you more!
The Pont Saint-Louis is no stranger to entertainers. From a lone guitarist to jazz bands, there is usually something or someone to listen to should you want a place to pause and polish off your ice cream.
A few days ago, we were on our way back to our apartment and this gentleman was setting up for a show. Or so we thought. For the next ten minutes, he rolled the piano back and forth over the bridge, would pause, pose and start rolling again. He would sometimes stop and situate himself on the chair, position his fingers for playing, then jump up and move the piano ten to fifteen feet and do it again.
I looked around for a photographer or videographer, figuring perhaps it was a photo shoot. None in sight. So this goes on for about ten minutes. He never played, he never stopped moving and fidgeting.
Then after about the twentieth reposition, he picked up the (then clear to me) fake piano and carried it down to the Seine.
Headlines like this don’t come along too often. I had to seize the opportunity.
On our last trip to Paris, we completed a new project (more on that in a few weeks!), but I couldn’t help snapping a few reds for old time’s sake.
Just a quick note to let you know that Paris in Color Notes are finally available in stores.
I collaborated with Chronicle Books on this companion set to the book last year, and I am very pleased with how they turned out. They are all occasion notes, including a quirky favorite for use as a get well card: the green pharmacie sign.
Also, in case you missed it, I finally added signed copies of Paris in Color to the shop, here.