Colourful Brussels

Me: I was in Brussels last week, as you know from my last post, on a four day visit, arriving on Saturday, late afternoon, and leaving at sparrowfart on Wednesday morning. That meant a day-and-a-bit of sightseeing, followed by two eleven hour days of meetings and discussions focused on the EU Youth Guarantee, and the possibility of doing something similar here in South Africa.

Interviewer: You mean no time for photographs?

Me: No time to lug the Nikon around, certainly – this is where the Leica D-Lux is in its element. And the quality of the images never ceases to amaze. Though of course it’s what the photographer is thinking, and doing, that really matters.

Interviewer: So what was the photographer doing?

Me: A mix of things, actually. Taking some photos at meetings, to share with the South African team and the people in Brussels who were so generous with their time and in sharing their experience. On Tuesday, for instance, we had people fly in from Portugal and Spain, Finland and Ireland, just to meet with us.

And then there were some more or less obligatory touristy photographs, the Grand Place for instance, to share with my wife and family.

But I was on the lookout, too, for interesting images – images that would work in colour, certainly – Brussels is a colourful place, packed with interesting shops and restaurants, squares and arcades, high style and design rubbing shoulders with the grand and the run-down. But also images that would say something in black-and-white.

Interviewer: So what have we got here?

Me: Well, these are images in colour, obviously – the Grand Place, as the sun is beginning to sink, with the light catching the gold on the buildings, but also a couple of contrasting images, which work I think not only as a kind of tourist record, but as emblems of the city and its contradictions. Next week I’ll post some of the black and white images.

[click to enlarge]