Le Flaneur: Time Lapse Video of Paris Without the People

Luke Shep­ard, a stu­dent at the Amer­i­can Uni­ver­si­ty of Paris, began work­ing on Le Fla­neur as part of a project for school, but it quick­ly took on a life of its own. He used a Nikon D90 DSLR cam­era to take over 2,000 pho­tos of Paris at night, and then used Adobe After Effects and Pre­miere Pro to pro­duce this impres­sive tour of a world that most of us rarely see – Paris with­out Parisians. In Eng­lish, “fla­neur” trans­lates rough­ly as “stroller,” “loafer,”  or per­haps “aim­less walk­er,”  and, in an inter­view with Nation­al Geo­graph­ic Trav­el­er, Shep­ard explained that he was  inspired to shoot these images in part by late-night plea­sure rides on his bicy­cle.

(Note: Some view­ers may pre­fer to watch with the vol­ume off, as the chase scene-ready sound­track detracts a bit from the eerie sense of a vir­tu­al­ly desert­ed city.  For more time-lapse pho­tog­ra­phy, check out these videos of Mec­ca, New York City, and the Milky Way.)

Sheer­ly Avni is a San Fran­cis­co-based arts and cul­ture writer. Her work has appeared in Salon, LA Week­ly, Moth­er Jones, and many oth­er pub­li­ca­tions. You can fol­low her on twit­ter at @sheerly.

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