Trending: Photographers Love Photographing Cities, Especially at Night

By David Schonauer   Monday July 22, 2019

Is there a bad time to photograph Venice?

Maybe not. But French architectural and urban photographer photographer Thibaud Poirier likes it best at night.

Poirier is based in Paris, but, notes Public House of Art, he has spent most of his life “experiencing other cities and cultures across the world and has called Buenos Aires, Houston, Montreal, and Tokyo home.” He is known best, perhaps, for his images of great libraries around the world and another more recent series on churches throughout Europe and Japan.

Even more recently, Poirier has created a series featuring Venice after dark, when, notes My Modern Met, it “is tranquil and still, devoid of the touristic hustle and bustle that often defines this city.”

“Mixing up symmetrical and asymmetrical compositions, Poirier plays with Venice’s unique characteristics and offers a picturesque view of life on the islands,” notes the blog.

Meanwhile, Hosokawa Ryohei, a self-taught photographer based in Tokyo, went touring his hometown at night and captured plenty of hustle and bustle and colorful, frenetic energy.

“His electric nightscapes give a glimpse of the urban jungle and the people who live there through candid snapshots and long exposure images,” notes My Modern Met.

We feature both series today.

Thibaud Poirier: Venice at Night

In Thibaud Poirier’s series “Sleeping Venice,” notes My Modern Met, “bridges reflect in the cool still waters of the canals, contrasting with the rich tones of the stuccoed architecture. With no traces of humans in sight, the photographs transmit a quiet stillness that crystalizes Venice and allows us to ponder just how little the environment has changed in the centuries since it was constructed.”

Why did he choose Venice for the series? Because its street are waterways, and there are no speeding automobiles to disrupt the city’s nighttime serenity.

“I’ve been working on a similar series in Paris,” Poirier says, “but I found it much easier to capture the feeling of a city frozen in time in Venice, as there are no cars and the architecture has stayed the same for the last centuries. I wanted to capture typical Venice views; that’s why you’ll find the water element in all my shots.”

Poirier shot the series in just a few days — essentially over the course of a weekend this past winter, adds Colossal.

“For Poirier, the series was a way to get out into the quieter areas of the city, where he was happily surprised to find no crowds,” notes MMM.

“Despite the aquatic elements in his image, the photographer shares that he actually took all the shots on land, from bridges, ledges, and dead-end streets,” adds Colossal.

Hosokawa Ryohei: Tokyo By Night

In Hosokawa Ryohei’s images of Tokyo, notes My Modern Met, “Rainy nights are lit by electric neon signs, and busy traffic intersections feature streams of tail lights. Each atmospheric image showcases Tokyo’s vibrant energy and constant movement. By playing with perspective, light, and reflections, Ryohei often uses rain-slicked street and puddles as part of his compositions, showing how buildings and lights are mirrored in their liquid surfaces.”

 Ryohei shot the images using an Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark II camera, notes MMM.


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