A Vincent Mounier Photography Blog

Retour aux Sources - Part 5, L’arrière-pays
Having packed up and bid farewell to Soja, the blue-eyed dog who had become our friend, we left Saint-Maximin and set out on a northerly drive that would not turn out as expected. Weather was marginal and when we reached the beautiful Lac de Sainte-Croix through which flows the Verdon river, gusts were so strong that simply standing outside on a beach to take a picture felt like a circus act. Strengthened by a venturi effect through the famous Gorges du Verdon, a fifteen-m...
Retour aux Sources - Part 4, Sainte-Victoire
April 19, 2024
Enjoying lasting clear skies courtesy of the mistral, we used our following morning to raid an open air market in the old Aix. There, charmed by the authentically friendly vibe and blinded by our willing tourist blinkers, we collected a fantastic saucisson for the road, a Tunisian zlabia—extremely sweet honey-based pastry which I devoured on the spot—and a couple of slices of pâte de fruit, traditional fruit paste with esoteric flavors of tomato, basil and herbs of Provenc...
Blossoming Sun
While I am working on the next Retour aux Sources installment, here is a quick artistic view of Monday’s solar eclipse. The individual images were shot with a small self-tracking telescope set up on the roof. This universe has a sense of humor—and proportions. What were the odds of a moon, four hundred times closer to us than the sun is, sneakily choosing to match our star’s apparent size when seen from Earth? Blossoming Sun
Retour aux Sources - Part 3, Calanques
There are few places in the world that can compete in my heart with the sheer beauty of the Calanques. A jewel of the South of France, the Calanques de Marseilles are a coastal massif extending from the second-largest French city towards the east for some twenty kilometers as the crow flies. Carved out of limestone, they are a typically Mediterranean type of long rocky coves forming a series of steep and narrow inlets, making for an intricately chiseled shoreline. White...
Retour aux Sources - Part 2, Arrival
The Big Apple was left behind on a Monday evening red-eye. Our hearts were heavy because Nkwe Pirelli, black kitty with white murder mittens, had not stayed behind before and our caring tendrils would stretch thin across the ocean. We flew into the night and landed in a rainy Paris the following dawn. Our first priority after reaching our departure terminal was to acquire coffee, croissants and a flan, which were ludicrously delicious as expected, even at an airport. Ou...
Retour aux Sources - Part 1, A Bird's-eye View
When Marie offered me a Côte d’Azur birthday pilgrimage recently, I gasped and shivered with absolute delight. It was the best present ever. But without missing a beat, the raspy little voice of reason whispered in my ear: "Oh? And how are you going to make this happen without sabotaging 'work'?" You see, work, with its inglorious cliché of putting bread on the table and a roof above our heads, had been steadily creeping from the intended status of a means to an end to ...
Blue Sparks
April 22, 2023
Visiting Jones Beach today for a sandy weekend run despite the high tide, I saw the usual shore birds including oyster catchers, but it was a flock of tree swallows that won my heart. Luckily I had brought the long lens and as soon as I was back from running, I set back out to pay the lovely blue birds a visit. Tree swallows Tree swallows
A Matter of Scale
September 11, 2022
On an outing to Montauk yesterday I was treated with whales, spinner dolphins in the distance and a few seals poking their head through the rolling surf, which had attracted many boards. The scale of that humpback (at least I think that's a humpback) is mind-boggling when you compare it to the fish desperately attempting to escape the scoop. Humpback whale And this morning, as I sipped my coffee, a minuscule ruby-throated hummingbird paid the terrace flowers a long vis...
The AI's of My Dreams
The world of all things creative, whether photography, painting, digital art, product design, cartoons, etc. is about to be blown to pieces by a tornado of unprecedented proportions: the emergence of AI. For the record, I created all the images in this post with the help of one of the AI's mentioned below*. I then enlarged them because the current output sizes are low, but no other editing was applied. Those tools have been trained to compare the relationship between te...
The Butterflies
August 17, 2022
On a recent Long Island outing, we found lovely pollinators that managed to momentarily dull a mindful of existential puzzles and quiet down those chaotically newsworthy echoes that clash with one's inner peace on a daily basis. You know what I'm talking about, the news, COVID, a war, children in suits playing with their Mar-a-Lego... Black swallowtail, Long Island The chaos theory uses a butterfly analogy to illustrate how small changes in initial conditions can great...
Close Encounters of the Small Kind
August 13, 2022
After stating in a recent post that "nobody likes bugs", I decided to prove myself wrong, go back to the source and look at the little devils with a new eye. Or rather an old lens. Unidentified clown-ish beetle The best thing about macro photography is that it makes me slow down, clear my mind and tune into a world of the tiniest proportions. The insects I discover then are colorful, in turn mighty or funny looking, and they often are tigers within their realm. Drag...
Invading the Hood
August 1, 2022
On a recent visit to Staten Island's Conference House Park, the lanternflies were everywhere. There were insect highways going up tree trunks, and more annoyingly, they'd fall back on us. Nobody likes bugs, missunderestimated* threat or not. Lanternfly on ID.4 • ♦ • * As someone not so famous once said.