New Series: Paris Noir

Paris Noir, Black and White Photography, Nichole Robertson

Paris Noir, Black and White Photography, Nichole Robertson

Paris Noir, Black and White Photography, Nichole Robertson

Paris Noir, Black and White Photography, Nichole Robertson

Paris Noir, Black and White Photography, Nichole Robertson

Paris Noir, Black and White Photography, Nichole Robertson

Paris Noir, Black and White Photography, Nichole Robertson

Paris Noir, Black and White Photography, Nichole Robertson

Unlike New York and the internet, Paris sleeps. And because I’m often jet-lagged and up all night when I’m there, I get to experience the city when it’s dark and quiet.

I appreciate the silence and shadows, and those late nights are a cherished respite. A respite from the instagram-ification of everything. From staged shots of breakfasts, shoes and homes. From polished online personas. From being connected to everyone, yet feeling disconnected. From fearing that we are no more than the sum of our clicks and likes. From technology.

Paris at night – with its quiet, intimate streets and dramatic light – is my favorite place to disconnect and think. There is a wonderful weight to the stillness of the city at rest. It sharpens my senses and clears my head. I spent a lot of time over the last year walking those streets in the wee hours, and the solitude is intoxicating.

Today, I’m sharing the first images from a new ongoing series. Paris Noir reflects a retreat into the shadows. I want to spend time as a voyeur at backstage dramas rather than be an audience member at paid online performances.

I draw aesthetic and thematic inspiration from Film Noir. I love the sense of mystery invoked by dark shadows, high contrast lighting and solitary figures. I’m exploring themes of social malaise and fragmented identity to pose a bigger question: What happens when we step out of the spotlight?

See all the photos from the series here.
Prints available in the shop.

- Nichole 

 

8 Comments

  1. susan
    February 17, 2014

    I love this concept-the darkness is refreshing, I agree. We are all guilty at times of sharing a stylized version of our lives…and the night provides mystery, clarity, and a cloak of privacy. I’m looking forward to wandering the Paris streets at night on my next visit…maybe you can join me and share some of your shadowy secrets. ::wink::

    Reply
    • Nichole
      February 17, 2014

      Thanks, Susan. I’ve definitely been drawn offline a lot lately. So much has changed in social media the past few years.

      Would love to share a walk – and shadowy secrets! – with you in Paris.

      Reply
  2. Marchelle
    February 18, 2014

    Nichole, your candidness is refreshing, especially for a blog! So much of our society at large is evermore concerned with “the self” rather and “the other.” Seems we spend more time creating a superficial billboard of what we want others to believe about us rather than having the courage to just be, to sit, to listen, to experience … to just be present. I find the depth of your photos to be in the soulfulness presented; it’s a li’l magical. I’m looking forward to following your Paris Noir series especially since I’ve loved Rembrandt’s focus on lighting since I was a kid old enough to appreciate the purpose in it.

    Reply
    • Nichole
      February 18, 2014

      Thank you, Marchelle!

      Some days I want to pull the plug on all social media, but then realize that some of it is great, I do like connecting, talking, sharing. It’s just that it’s become superficial.

      Reply
  3. Katie @ cakes, tea and dreams
    February 18, 2014

    I love this idea and these photos. I’m definitely looking for solitude and clarity these days.

    Reply
    • Nichole
      February 18, 2014

      Hi Kate.

      Thank you.

      I think we’re all struggling with this, and I definitely sense a slow down in social media participation.

      And then there are those days I fantasize about moving to a farm. ;)

      Reply
  4. Brianne
    February 21, 2014

    Hi Nichole!

    These images are so beautiful. I really love them. I can feel the quiet, solitude and peacefulness in the images. I love knowing what you were thinking about and feeling with this series. I look forward to seeing more!

    Reply
    • Nichole
      February 21, 2014

      Thank you Brianne!

      I am definitely in a darker mood these days. ;)

      Reply

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