Transformational Job

About Transformation


It’s funny that Jen chose transformation for a theme. At that very moment, at the other end of the World, I was hosting a meeting with Joe Pine (photo on the right), he who coined the expression ‘Customer Experience’. In the course of that meeting, Joe described his five major economy levels. The first one was ‘commodities’ and the last one was… transformation. And just at that moment when Jen posted her piece, I was showing Joe our little Friday exchanges.

Back to transformation. Each of the levels described by Joe build up on the previous one. At first there were only commodities, and then people decided to use these commodities to make ‘products’. Then products were ‘commoditised’ and one needed to add service to them. Now service is passé and what consumers want is experience. Beyond experience, and building upon it, there is ‘transformation’, that state when a business moves into a total different category, a notch or two higher than competition and transcends its business.

Beyond that, transformation is a process as well and I chose to pick a picture from my files, one I shot a few weeks back in rue des Thermopyles, a street in the 14th district which looks so bijou you can’t help feeling like living there. Going there, in itself, is an experience. I’m sure many of them will feel transformed when they come back from it.

Rue des Thermopyles

A picture which is the result of a transformation

But let’s admit it, this picture is the result of a transformation. Now, are you going to side with my wife or not. She contends that one should not be able to tamper with pictures in that way. Yet, the electric compartment fitted in the wall was so ugly I had to do away with it. Similarly, the bike in the background was an annoyance and let’s face it, I wasn’t going to move it away without permission was I? All that was needed to enhance the experience shown from the photo.

Things were hard enough as it were with the angry owners who were chasing me because I was taking pictures of their property and who thought they could extort money from me. So there it is. The before and after job and you tell me what you think and whether the Missus or myself is right?!

17-Montsouris-24092017-9743.jpg Rue des Thermopyles
Before After

Experimenting with light

Studio Photography

Today’s theme is experimental and nice Krista let us choose what we wanted so I went for an experiment of mine at the former St Vincent de Paul hospital (aka “grands voisins” until it disappears next Summer; sigh…) In the basement of one of the former hospital buildings there used to be a surgical block. Christopher, a rather nice and excentric American guy, was our host. He is the fourth eye of the “4ème oeil” photo artists foursome. He is the one stepping on the roll of paper. Behind him was Christophe, a — no less excentric — French photographer who had hired the studio too. I had decided to go there to experiment with portraits. I have neither enough space nor kit to do that at my office.

Studio Photography

The entrance to the “studio”. I hope they keep this with the new buildings, it’s nice to be able to hire the place for a shooting.

Continue reading “Experimenting with light”

Temporary Post

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All we do and build in this world is temporary. We don’t look at it this way and yet, with hindsight, once we are dead and buried, who will remember us and what we’ve done. What will become of this website and the 2,000+ blog posts which I have written, not to mention the thousands of pieces written for clients and other blogs and sites. Even our books… And our houses, one day, will end up like this one, possibly a stately mansion at the beginning of the twentieth century, yet it’s crumbling to dust now.


Castles too are temporary. All is transient.


What will become of our beautiful Roman churches and chapels in the Pyrenees now that nobody goes to mass. Let’s look at all this beauty now for there are no guarantees they will still be there in a few years.

Château du Landel

Leaves too are temporary, but like the magnificent 18th century chateau du Landel in Normandy, some things remain, or at least are a little bit less temporary than others.

A Peek At The Tower


In the 1900s (1888-1902), a famous engraver and artist, Henri Rivière, published 36 block-printed monochrome views of the Eiffel Tower. They were carried out in the Japanese fashion, with woodblocks and limited colouring. He signed his name in the manner of Japanese engravers like Hiroshige or Hokusai. After a few prints, the blocks had to be thrown away. He would position himself in various places of the Capital City and take a peek at the Eiffel Tower from the most improbable places. The Tower would then become central to his sketches, even though it was sometimes hidden. I am an admirer of Riviere’s work, and I have my eyes set on one of his engravings of my beautiful native Brittany. As such, I often try and mimic his work as here above from the Arch of Triumph (You have to walk around to the other side to be able to get this view) Continue reading “A Peek At The Tower”

Roundup of Rounded Shapes

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Rounded” is today’s theme for the Friday challenge. Rounded like the curves of these traditional Provençal boats near Toulon.


Or this rounded pathway through “Rue des Thermopyles” in Paris’ 14th district.


Last but not least, a collection of curves in Vierzon.



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Joan of Arc glows in the dark opposite the magnificent Regina Hotel in Paris. 


Above the Alexander III bridge. Pierre Granet’s Prestige in Battle glows in the mid July sun.


A glow in the dark installation by our neighbours’ group ‘noctambules’ (night-birds) in the Pyrenees. 


The sun glows through the beautiful 1960s glasswork of the St Jean Bosco chapel in Toulon.


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To picture today’s “scale” theme, if Erica hadn’t suggested it, I would have chosen mountains anyway. They are so huge and beautiful, no need to comment. Enjoy!

[All shot in 2017 in the Ariège]





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