Quilt Gallery

Friday, October 23, 2015

Seeing Red

Earlier this month I made a trip to Paris and Marseille, with a brief stop in London on the way home. Now that I've been home for a bit and have had time to look at all my photos together I am finding some interesting themes among my collection. Red, for example.

In the UK it's hard to avoid seeing red since it is used on many public facilities, such as buses and trains,

Piccadilly Circus tube stop

post boxes, and phone booths. I didn't check to see whether these old phone booths still have working phones in them. Does anybody use still them? Maybe they are just part of the scenery now, intended as subjects for tourist photos. 

Belgravia, London

In Paris red is more often used to make a personal statement, as in these love locks on the Pont Neuf,

Love locks on Pont Neuf

and in these red laces, which I spotted near the Louvre.

At the Carrousel du Louvre

In some cases red stole the scene. Tatiana Wolska's free-form sculpture contrasted sharply with lush  gardens in the courtyard of the early seventeenth century Hotel de Bethune-Sully in Paris.

Sculptures by Tatiana Wolska

Coca-Cola's enormous sign looms over Eros at Piccadilly Circus.

Statue of Eros at Piccadilly Circus

Equally arresting was this couple just outside the Piccadilly Circus tube stop. Her red dress caught my eye, but with no time to change camera settings, I just pointed my camera and clicked. It was this blurry image or nothing, though I rather like the blurriness as it conveys a bit of the motion and chaos of Piccadilly on a Saturday night.

Piccadilly Circus at night

Less chaotic were the shiny doors welcoming us into The Grenadier, a traditional pub near Belgrave Square.

The Grenadier

The red door of the Chateau d'If, a few minutes by boat from Marseille, is not quite so welcoming, at least if you imagine yourself to be Edmond Dantes of "The Count of Monte Cristo."

At the Chateau d'If

In other cases red was more of a highlight. A red-jacketed pedestrian appeared at just the right moment to add interest and a sense of scale to this image of Green Park in London.

Green Park

A red-shirted runner completed this scene of the lattice-work exterior of the MuCEM (the Museum of European and Mediterranean Culture) in Marseille. I will have more details about this building and Marseille in a subsequent post.

Runner alongside Marseille's MuCEM

Greeting me on my return home was this piece, consisting mostly of scraps, which has come together slowly from the scraps that I sew together every time I sit down at my machine to work on a proper project. It is very much an improvisational piece and I'm not entirely sure where I am going with it, except that eventually it will be large enough for a twin size bed.

I like the sunny yellow center, but once the borders were sewn on the yellow seemed overpowering. Hence the appliqué tree, the idea for which came from a book I enjoyed as a child, "The Cookie Tree," illustrated by my uncle,  Blake Hampton.

In spite of all the yellow, the red highlights are enough to make me see this piece as predominantly red. A little red goes a long way.

No comments:

Post a Comment