Collection Paris Stole My Passport

A short photo collection of an unintended stay.

Montmartre Street Art Sacré Cœur Harpist Streetscape Montmartre Ride In Peace

PARIS, FRANCE—A drizzly day in Montmartre, with more ponchos, raincoats, umbrellas than might be necessary, but they replace the lost colour of a blue sky gone white. Bark-trunked trees, straight to crooked, coalescing light sprinkle to big droplets off leaf tips. They splot on umbrellas, covering sketches and paintings, an occasional splash onto the works themselves. Their artists seem not to care.

An old man smokes a pipe in short breaths, a lazy exhale from the nostrils—no movement—smoke curls over his cheeks, eyes focused through thick glasses on a newspaper folded to compact magazine size. Around him are his paintings. Of a white-haired man who could be him, playing a lute in one, by a fireplace in a big leather chair in another. They’re of a warm wooden-carving palette, red scarves accenting.

Another old man chews on a wrinkled lip, partly-obscured by partly-greyed moustache. He’s sketching a woman in her twenties, posing there with her best fake smile. What she can’t see is that he’s drawing her eyes, for which a fake smile won’t do.