I love Paris!

From the first moment I have stepped out of the train at Gare du Nord on my first trip to Europe. I have been just a kid back then, a teenager. But I clearly remember the fascination which has overwhelmed me. And it was growing with every step thru the enormously wide alleys and roundabouts at Place de la Concorde as well as narrow streets of Pigalle.

 

 

After that, I have visited Paris a few more times. Once, I have seen all the “must” sights, I was able to give it more time, just wandering around the streets, aimlessly, started to feel the hart beat of the city that has no counterpart on the world.

Friends have been replaced with a girlfriend. And after the kids have arrived, I have been patiently waiting, when the time would be right, to be able to show them the city magnifique.

Finally, at the end of this August (2011), this long awaited moment, have arrived!

Alenka liked it.

Kids liked it.

But I think, I have been enjoying it for all of them.

Summer was slowly fading away, but the days were still pleasantly warm and sunny. The city has been crowded with tourists so we set our goals low and focus on enjoying the moment. I was determined to use the opportunity and continue the sketching practice I have (re) started recently at GMMC. Since kids are not know for their patience, I had limited windows of opportunity to draw. But they were real sugars and Alenka comited herself to buy me some precious moments. The sketches were therefore drawn at fast pace and I have enormously enjoyed every moment of it.

 

 

I made this fas sketch of Notre Dame form our boat trip on Seine. Actually it has been drawn mostly by memory since at the time I have finished it, we were already turning to return on the other side of the island.

 

 

Those two sketches were also mad on the boat. The first one is just a graphical note of an extremely beautiful construction of the bridge, we have been passing under. And the first sketch of Eiffel Tower has been made just a few minutes before, we have disembarked, when our doter already needed to go to pee and son has been bored and hungry and was climbing all over me. What a joy!

 

 

All needs satisfied, we have enjoyed a few moments in the nice and quit caffee inside the Trocadero museum and gallery. One do not usually see those statues from behind and I am not very proficient in drawing the organic forms so I have decided to give it a try. Montparnasse Tower is clearly visible on the background Paris skyline.

 

 

Queue has been to long and we (kids) have been to tired to walk to the top of the Arch de Triomph but I have made them to at least circle around the monument. At one red light, Alenka has bought me a precious minutes distracting the kids, which allowed me to draw this sketch. It truly is an impressive building.

 

 

Here, I have tried to focus on a beautiful promotional tower on Champs Elysees, but lost myself drawing more and more which finally resulted on failing to capture the scene altogether. The remarkable proportions and the feeling of the wideness one feels at the place is completely lost on this sketch.

 

 

Queue to enter the Notre Dame Cathedral was again to long, so I have seized the opportunity while kids were eating la baguette to quickly capture the front of this beautiful gothic church. Only thru drawing it, I have become aware of some asymmetrical details that contradict the other way an orderly symmetrical building. It is also amazing how the facade, having some elements being in front of the others, changes form the different points of view.

 

 

Open space in front of the Georges Pompidou Centre has been unusually quite. No jugglers. No magicians. No other performers. But nevertheless the place provided us with a nice place to just sit down for a while.

 

 

If I would have to pick one place, one building in Paris, that hold a special place in my hart, that would with no doubt be Sacre Coeur Basilica. Beautiful, snow white building sitting on the top of the green Montmartre hill above lively and inspiring Pigalle, gently defines and dominates the place. All my visits here have always been rewarded with a unique sensation of peace. That is why I have chosen it to be the final point of our itinerary so that we would be able to breath it deep and bring some back home.

Matej Gašperič

Architect