A super green engagement session at the Louvre and Tuileries Gardens
A perfect early morning engagement session at the Louvre Museum
The day before, I met a wonderful couple, Alexander and Justine, from Philadelphia, at the Trocadero area of the Eiffel Tower. Alex got on one knee with a full view of the Eiffel Tower and asked Justine to marry him. She said yes! Check out their amazing proposal here.
Alex wanted to surprise Justine also with an engagement session the next day at the Louvre Museum. What a great idea! Most people just stick to the Eiffel Tower, but you're missing so much if you don't explore other photogenic parts of Paris, and the Louvre is one of the most popular photo spots outside of the Eiffel Tower. I love this couple because while I'm not a morning person myself, I know that in Paris "the early bird gets the worm", meaning, you get to see more of the city without so many tourists. We met in front of the Louvre at 8:00 am. Unfortunately, it was a rainy morning, but with umbrellas, no problems! In Paris the rain sometimes comes down in buckets, but more often than not, it's a few showers, followed by nothing, then a few drops, then maybe a few showers again, and sometimes, even a glimpse of the sun. This was one of those days, minus the sun.
The crowds weren't out yet, so it was a perfect morning. Alex and Justine were just a bit tired and jet lagged from their trip, but they were great sports--lots of fun to chat with and just lovely.
Why have a photo session at the Louvre?
The Louvre is the old palace where the kings and queens lived, and it's famous for its art collection of course, but it's also famous as an architectural treasure in its own right. It's fantastic for a photo session because not only do you have the famous glass pyramid (which celebrates its 30th year this year), but all of the ornate architecture in the forecourt and what I call the "back 40", which is an old term we used to use on the farm in Minnesota, the "back 40" meaning 40 acres on the back of the property. To be sure, the Louvre is huge! It provides so many pretty photo opportunities.
Because I love Wikipedia, here's a great "Louvre in a nutshell" explanation of this great Paris landmark:
The Louvre or the Louvre Museum is the world's largest art museum and a historic monument in Paris, France. A central landmark of the city, it is located on the Right Bank of the Seine in the city's 1st arrondissement (district or ward). Approximately 38,000 objects from prehistory to the 21st century are exhibited over an area of 72,735 square metres (782,910 square feet). In 2018, the Louvre was the world's most visited art museum, receiving 10.2 million visitors.
The museum is housed in the Louvre Palace, originally built as the Louvre castle in the late 12th to 13th century under Philip II. Remnants of the fortress are visible in the basement of the museum. Due to the urban expansion of the city, the fortress eventually lost its defensive function and, in 1546, was converted by Francis I into the main residence of the French Kings. The building was extended many times to form the present Louvre Palace. In 1682, Louis XIV chose the Palace of Versailles for his household, leaving the Louvre primarily as a place to display the royal collection, including, from 1692, a collection of ancient Greek and Roman sculpture. In 1692, the building was occupied by the Académie des Inscriptions et Belles-Lettres and the Académie Royale de Peinture et de Sculpture, which in 1699 held the first of a series of salons. The Académie remained at the Louvre for 100 years. During the French Revolution, the National Assembly decreed that the Louvre should be used as a museum to display the nation's masterpieces.
The museum opened on 10 August 1793 with an exhibition of 537 paintings, the majority of the works being royal and confiscated church property. Because of structural problems with the building, the museum was closed in 1796 until 1801. The collection was increased under Napoleon and the museum was renamed Musée Napoléon, but after Napoleon's abdication many works seized by his armies were returned to their original owners. The collection was further increased during the reigns of Louis XVIII and Charles X, and during the Second French Empire the museum gained 20,000 pieces. Holdings have grown steadily through donations and bequests since the Third Republic. The collection is divided among eight curatorial departments: Egyptian Antiquities; Near Eastern Antiquities; Greek, Etruscan and Roman Antiquities; Islamic Art; Sculpture; Decorative Arts; Paintings; Prints and Drawings.
So there you have it, a quick synopsis of the world's most visited museum, but keep in mind, it's closed on Tuesdays (they have to clean sometimes!).
After our magnificent session at the Louvre, we popped next door to the Tuileries Gardens, and it was so green in the gardens I couldn't believe it! All this rain recently, really makes the flowers pop and of course you also have a view of the front of the Louvre. Honestly, I loved Alex and Justine so much I could have kept them occupied half the day photographing around Paris, but they had places they wanted to visit, naturally.
If you'd like to book your very own couples session, check out the Picture Me Paris photo session packages for couples here. See you in Paris!
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