Aug 8, 2010

Into the Palace

Egmontpaleis - Ingang

There’s a few places that are a simply marvelous to capture, but are equally hard to get into with a camera (don’t even mention a tripod). Recently I was fortunate to be invited to join a limited group of photographers that was offered access to one such exclusive location. And even better, I got to return for a second time a few days after my first visit. How about that!

Egmontpaleis - Ambassadeurstrap 
The Egmont Palace is a large mansion located near the Wolstraat/ Rue aux Laines and the Kleine Zavel/Petit Sablon in Brussels.
Originally built between 1548 and 1560 in Italian renaissance style, it served as the city residence for the Egmont and later the Arenberg families. During the 18th and 19th centuries, most of the building was transformed and/or renovated in classical style.
Today, it is used for formal meetings, receptions and dinners by the Belgian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Egmontpaleis - Bibliotheek
We were allowed to visit and photograph some ‘famous’ parts of the Palace, each of them a splendor to the eye – and a challenge for the photographer! The vast perspectives of the halls, the luxurious decoration of the rooms and the complex interplay of daylight and artificial sources each force you to bring out the best of your technique and experience.

Egmontpaleis - Spiegelzaal

Just to name a few of the spectacular places we could shoot: the imposing Ambassador Stairway modeled after another one in the Versailles castle, the Library in Directoire style, the Hall of Mirrors in RĂ©gence fashion, the Tapestry Room with samples dating as far back as 1580…

By now you understand why I came back with more than 800 pictures collected in only a few hectic hours! As I work my way through post-processing, beefing up my perspective correction and HDR techniques, I will come back to show you more sights from this magical place in future posts. Stay tuned!

Gear notes: D700, 17-35/2.8, 24-70/2.8, 16/2.8

Click on the image(s) to see a larger version

No comments: