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Thursday, February 15, 2018

Loire Valley, France - Day 6


innovaeditor/assets/Blog/Loire/01.9/P1000800r.jpg

To make up for the disappointment yesterday we headed for two different locations. My shutter therapy is falling short right now!

 

Our first stop was Cheverny. Built between 1620 and 1634. All the finishing on the towers weren't completed until 1648 however. It's the first chateau to be built as a chateau without any defensive or military purposes in mind. And what a beautiful building it is. I could see me living there too, but somehow I don't think that's going to happen. Like I said, I think this must be one of the most beautiful buildings I have had the pleasure to see. It is simply immaculate. I think it must count as my favourites on this trip and if you ever get the chance to visit, do, you will not regret it.

 

Cheverny

Cheverny

 

 

Photography Notes
I have experienced no problems with the Olympus E-M1 with the Olympus 12-100 f4 mounted, or for that matter with the E-M5 II mounting the Panasonic 7-14 f4. Not that I expected any but I'm still really impressed about how everything seems to integrate together. Changing Panasonic lenses on Olympus bodies would have been unthinkable a few years ago. personally I think it's a brilliant concept. I'm glad I have the 7-14 f4 with me as it's seen nearly as much use as the 12-100 f4. Inside these chateaus it's been in constant use as the 12-100 f4 would simply not be wide enough. I seem to be managing fine with the f4 lenses.

 


Images taken with the Panasonic TZ101

Cheverny

 

 

Cheverny

 

 

Cheverny

 

 

Cheverny

 

 

Cheverny

 

 

Cheverny

 

 

 

Olympus E-M1 - Olympus 12-100 f4 Pro

Cheverny

 I don't care what other people think here, this chateau is one graceful building. The first chateau to be built without any military purpose in mind. It is simply exquisit and in tip-top shape, inside and out.

 

 

Cheverny

A slightly different view. Very nice.

 

 

Cheverny 

 

 

Cheverny

 

 

Cheverny

 

 

Cheverny

 

 

Cheverny

The way to the orangery.

 

 

Cheverny

 I like flowers too.

 

 

Cheverny

I think this is a Fireball Hibiscus. Anyway, it's the largest Hibiscus I've ever seen.

 

 

Cheverny

 

 

Cheverny

 

 

Cheverny

 The Orangery. If you're wondering where that name came from it's where the orange trees were kept in winter. It's now a cafe serving excellent caffee.

 

 

Cheverny

If you haven't noticed, I have a thing for tree images too.

 

 

Cheverny

 

 

Cheverny

 

 

Cheverny

 

 

Cheverny

 

 

Cheverny

 

 

Cheverny

More trees.

 

 

Cheverny

 

 

Cheverny

 

 

Cheverny

 

 

Cheverny

 

 

Cheverny

 

 

Cheverny

 

 

 

 

Olympus E-5 II - Panasonic 7-14 f4

Cheverny

One of the most imposing rooms I have ever seen. Simply superb. Everything about it seems to be perfect.

 

 

Cheverny

 Taken from the other side of the room.

 

 

Cheverny

The ceiling. Amazing and in pristine condition.

 

 

Cheverny

The hallway. How wonderful is that. I fell in love with this chateau the first time I saw it.

 

 

Cheverny

The ceiling in the hallway. Again, in pristine condition.

 

 

Cheverny 

 

 

Cheverny

 

 

Cheverny

 

 

Cheverny

 

 

Cheverny

 

 

Cheverny

 

 

Cheverny

 

 

Cheverny

 

 

Cheverny

 

 

Cheverny

 

 

Cheverny

 

 

Cheverny

Some real national treasures contained within this chateau.

 

 

Cheverny

 

 

Cheverny

 

 

Cheverny

The Kings Room.

 

 

Cheverny

 Each of these large chateaus had a room for the King. You never knew when he would came and visit.

 

 

Cheverny

Again very impressive. It cost a small fortune to install one of these rooms. However, the owner could not afford not to have a room especially made for the king. I believe this one only got used for a couple of nights by the king.

 

 

Cheverny

Naturally, each chateau had its own little chapel.

 

 

Cheverny

 

 

Cheverny

A selfie of sorts Smile

 

Cheverny

Fantastic table. Marble inlaid with different patterns of marble. I couldn't take my eyes off it. A real work of art.

 

 

Cheverny

 

 

Cheverny

 

 

Cheverny

 

 

Cheverny

I must use these wide angle lenses more.

 

 

Cheverny

 

 

Cheverny

The Orangery again but this time with the 7-14 f4.

 

 

Cheverny

I've taken a few similar images but with different camera/lens combinations for comparison.

 

 

Cheverny

 

 

Cheverny

If you haven't noticed the tile collage depicts Chevency.

 

 
Another little tidbit about Cheverny. The owner is an avid hunter and keeps a pack of nearly a 100 hounds on the grounds and hunting takes place twice a week during the winter months. Now these hounds aren't your normal run of the mill dogs, they are really enormous and are a mix of English foxhounds and a French breed. I was just glad there was a fence between them and me or they'd have had me for breakfast I think. They are also a little smelly, but that's how real dogs smell. Just think of one smelly dog and multiply it by 100.

 

 

Images taken with the Panasonic TZ101

The Pack at Cheverny

Must be boring for these dogs in the kennel. I really don't know what they do for day to day when not hunting.

 

 

The Pack at Cheverny

 

 

The Pack at Cheverny

Taking a nap in the sun.

 

 

The Pack at Cheverny

 

 

The Pack at Cheverny

 

 

 

Our next stop was Chateau Beauregard. Originally built as a hunting lodge for Henry II, it was transformed in mid-16th century for Henry IIs Secretary-of-State. The most spectacular about this chateau is the "Portrait Room". It contains 327 portraits of the most important and influential Europeans dating between 1328 and 1643. The reason why it stops at 1643 is because the room was built in 1643. That in itself was a major feat for that period. The remainder of the chateau needs some restoration work done, but none the less, it's worth a visit.

 

Beauregard

Beauregard, not too far away from Cheverny.

 

 

 

Olympus E-M1 - Olympus 12-100 f4 Pro

Beauregard

 

 

Beauregard

 

 

Beauregard

 

 

Beauregard

 

 

Beauregard

 

 

Beauregard

 

 

Beauregard

 

 

 

Olympus E-M5 II - Panasonic 7-14 f4

Beauregard

 The perfect rose.

 

 

Beauregard

 

 

Beauregard

 

 

 

Beauregard

 

 

 Beauregard

Just love these old kitchens with the copper pots and pans.

 

 

Beauregard

When the romans invaded Gaul some 2000 years ago, most of France was covered with forest (most of northern Europe wac actually). Nowadays, forests are a rare thing indeed. Looking at the fireplace above, you'll see the reason why.

 

 

Beauregard

Now that is a piece of furniture.

 

 

Beauregard

This is the real reason we came to Beauregard. The Portrait Room.

 

 

Beauregard

Magnificent.

 

 

Beauregard

 

 

Beauregard

 

 

Beauregard

The ceiling. And to think that every inch of these chateaus were decorated in some way.

 

 

Beauregard

An exhibition in one of the other rooms at Beauregard. Portraits of dogs on a black background - apart from one; a cat. You can see it on the left second image bottom row. It's there because a friend of the artist asked him to do her cat. It took approximately 3 hours per portrait. And he did a few as you can see. Very well done indeed.

 

 

Beauregard

 

 

Beauregard

I took this to show the quality of the portraits and the ceiling at the same time. Both impressed me.

 

 

Beauregard

 

 

Beauregard

The Study. Panelled from floor to ceiling. Whoever the craftsman was who did this, he was a real master of his craft.

 

 

Beauregard

 

 

Beauregard

You can see my only gripe with this lens. Left side about 2/3rds up the image. Purple blob. Well documented I think but I only noticed this after downloading all my images to my PC. Window is to the left but the sun wasn't really anywhere to be seen. I've noticed this in quite  few of my images. Maybe I should try the 7-14 f4 on a Panasonic body.

 

 

Beauregard

 

 

Beauregard

Another ceiling shot from the hallway in Beauregard.

 


Since we had a little time left before the day came to a close, we went to the little village of Fougeres-sur-Bievre. Guess what, it has another fortress. It was originally built in 1030. During the 100 Years War, it fell into English hands who abandoned it in ruins in 1429. It was rebuilt in 1470 and turned into a small fortress. Between 1510 and 1520 it was again modifies with a covered gallery and some decoration. It is a perfect example of a mediaeval fortress (if that's your thing). I suppose you could call it a working chateau.

 

Fougeres-sur-Bievre

Most of the well known Chateaus are within a small part of the Loire Valley.

 


All I can say is I'm glad I didn't live in the middle ages. It must have been really hard, especially on the poor.

 

 

Olympus E-M5 II - Panasonic 7-14 f4
Fougeres-sur-Bievre

 

 

Fougeres-sur-Bievre

 

 

Fougeres-sur-Bievre

What was interesting here is the fact you could see how they built in those days.

 

 

Fougeres-sur-Bievre

The finished product.

 

 

Fougeres-sur-Bievre

 

 

Fougeres-sur-Bievre

 

 

Fougeres-sur-Bievre

 

 

Fougeres-sur-Bievre

Interesting to see how these fortresses were built. Underneath all that stone and slate, wood was a major part of the building process. No wonder wood can claim a premium price these days.

 

 

Fougeres-sur-Bievre

 

 

 

 

Olympus E-M1 - Olympus 12-100 f4 Pro

Fougeres-sur-Bievre

Just three images from this combination.

 

 

Fougeres-sur-Bievre

 

 

Fougeres-sur-Bievre

 

 

 


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I'm an enthusiastic photographer who likes to tinker with manual lenses on most camera formats.

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