Coup de foudre

French photographer Edouard Boubat was born in Paris on September 13, 1923. He was a student at the prestigious art and design school École Estienne, where he learned graphic arts and design. After World War II, his interest shifted to photography. Boubet became a magazine staff photographer and then went on his own as a documentary photographer, mostly in Eastern Europe.


(Photo credit: alyletteri)

There’s a charming interview with Boubat by fellow-photographer Frank Horvat. Boubat said, “I think that the photos that we like were made when the photographer knew how to disappear. If there were a secret, certainly that would be it.”He said that he felt that he sometimes took only one or two good photos a year and that opportunities to take great photos were like a gift. He would despise the facility with which we can snap off hundreds of photos with our digital cameras. He used a Rollei that could take only 12 exposures to a roll. Boubat said that if we were really strong, we would take only three or four pictures instead of relying on volume to stumble upon a good shot. And yet he also claimed that photographers stay young because they live in hope of one more great picture. “A stolen kiss” was another of his photographic metaphors.

Edouard Boubat 0Boubat said the moment of a great photo was like a coup de foudre (coo duh foodruh), which means like a bolt of lightning, and, like lightning, it strikes unpredictably. This expression is used metaphorically to mean “love at first sight.” Boubat’s works are in important museum collections throughout the world, including the Fondation Cartier. He died on June 30, 1999.

It’s a Wonderful Life! Edouard Boubat

About Patricia Gilbert

Patricia Gilbert is a French teacher. She's Canadian, lives in the United States, but dreams of living in France. Follow her on Instagram @Onequalitythefinest and on Twitter @1qualthefinest.
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1 Response to Coup de foudre

  1. Pingback: Un Étranger bienveillant | One quality, the finest.

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