I am truly grateful to have had the opportunity to interview Georgianna Lane this week. I discovered Georgianna on Instagram when I was just starting out as a blogger. Her incredible photography of Paris and flowers instantly won me over, and her accounts @georgiannalane and @aparisianmoment quickly became my IG favorites. Georgianna’s photography captures the romantic and the serene sides of Paris that I fell in love with upon first sight, and it transports me back to early morning walks where the streets are still so silent you can hear nothing but your own shoes on the pavement and breathe in the divine scent of fresh baguette.
I think living there, I always tended to lose sight of that Paris. When you live in a great city, it’s easy to take it for granted. You start to go about everyday life without looking at the beauty surrounding you. Now that we’re living in NYC, I wish that I had spent more time savoring those moments in Paris. More quiet walks along the Seine, more writing on the terrace of a café listening to the clinking of petites cuillères, more lying on the grass in the Spring and breathing in the seasonal blooms. Georgianna’s photography is so dear to me because it takes me back to these very special, transcendent moments.
Georgianna’s latest book, Paris in Bloom, will be released in March, and I’ve been beyond excited to get my hands on it. It is available for preorder here with a free 8×10 signed print as a gift.
The time seems fitting to share more about the woman behind the camera, plus some Parisian eye candy from her collection! All of the photography in this post is Georgianna’s. (That’s why it’s so beautiful!)
Interview with Georgianna Lane
When did you first go to Paris, and what was that experience like?
First of all, thank you so much for inviting me here, Laura, and for your very kind words. I’m delighted that my images bring back special memories of Paris for you!
My first trip to Paris was a magical, indelible experience as a fourteen-year old, traveling with my Mother on our first trip to the city. We stayed in a charming hotel in the Saint Germain area, enjoyed picnics of fresh bread and cheese along the Seine, visited museums and laughed at our awkward attempts at ordering meals in French. We were both in awe and mesmerized by the beauty of the city. Seeing the Impressionist paintings up close greatly influenced my own artistic journey.
How did you get into photography and building your business?
Growing up, everyone in my family was an avid photographer – it was something we all did and loved, along with traveling. I quickly became intent on documenting my adventures around the world and never went anywhere without a camera. As an adult, I oversaw photoshoots in my work as an Art Director at a Hollywood agency for many years, which was a fantastic experience, but not the field I wanted to continue in. When I left 12 years ago, I vowed to be self-employed from then on, and I am thankful to say that I have been. I began my photography business with a clear idea of how I envisioned it and just started creating it, one step at a time. I’m also a graphic designer so I freelanced doing that while I built up my photography clients.
That’s so inspiring! What was your favorite photo shoot in Paris and why?
That’s really difficult to answer! I’ve been shooting for Paris in Bloom for several years. So many amazing people and locations welcomed me during the process of creating the book, from hotels to flower shops to museums to private homes. I will say that having the Hall of Mirrors at Versailles all to myself for a shoot was a thrilling, if nerve-wracking, experience. But my favorite activity in Paris is to wander through the gardens very early in the morning, when the air is quiet and cool and the birds are celebrating a new day. I spent much time in the gardens during the course of the book, and there is nothing more enchanting than the feeling of having Paris all to yourself.
I cannot even imagine the feeling of being alone in the Hall of Mirrors in Versailles. That must have been such an incredible experience. Early morning walks are so special in Paris when you have the city to yourself. I can still remember having to drag myself out of bed before 6 AM to catch an early flight and being absolutely miserable—until I’d get outside and realize how special it was. Plus, you can’t really be too miserable when you can pick up a fresh, warm pain au chocolat on your way.
Which Parisian garden would you say is your favorite?
Several are very close contenders but my absolute favorite is the Palais Royal. It is always the first place I head toward when I get off the plane in Paris. Truly an oasis, I find its symmetry and orderliness immensely calming.
If you had only one weekend in Paris, where would you go and what would you do?
Very difficult to decide! I would maximize my time and forego any place that might have a long line to enter.
Museums: Musee Rodin (exceptional), Musee d’Orsay (go early or get a museum pass), Musee Carnavalet (never crowded). Alternates: Jeu de Paume, Musee Jacquemart-André, the Louvre (book ahead, you will spend at least half a day once you get inside).
Flea market shopping: L’Objet Qui Parle in Montmartre. A delightful, quirky shop that will give you a fun brocante fix and save you traveling out to Les Puces.
Fun wandering: Montmartre in the morning
Gardens: Palais Royal, Tuileries, Jardin du Luxembourg. Alternates: Parc Monceau, Jardins des Plantes, Champs de Mars
Cafés: St. Regis on Île Saint-Louis, Cafe Julien in the Marais, Shakespeare and Company on the Left Bank, La Campanella in the 7th
Walking: The walk from Pont Neuf through Place Dauphine to Notre Dame and then over the pedestrian bridge to Île Saint-Louis is one of the most historical and charming. Refresh yourself at St. Regis Cafe with an omelet and coffee, and at Berthillon with ice cream.
Oh how I miss Berthillon! These are all such great suggestions. Can you share some of the most Instagrammable spots in Paris?
I have to laugh because there are locations in Paris (and London) where there is literally a line-up of Instagrammers waiting to get their shot!
The Paris locations that come to mind instantly include a mint-colored door on Île Saint-Louis, (or any number of other brightly-colored doors for that matter), Boot Cafe, Cafe Kitsune, Pont Alexandre III at sunset, Laduree and, of course, the Trocadero with the breathtaking view of the Eiffel Tower.
When you’re working in Paris, is there anything you miss from home? When you’re working in your home north of Seattle, is there anything you miss from Paris?
I have to say that when I’m in Paris, I never think about being anywhere else as I feel utterly happy there.
When I’m not in Paris, I miss so many things, including the incredible architecture, sense of history, world-class museums, and especially, not driving! And I adore the Parisians.
Seattle is a wonderful, beautiful place and we own a lovely house on a wooded property – a peaceful retreat in which to catch up from all the travel throughout the year.
When I’m away, I do miss family that are Stateside, my very large garden and our sweet birds that make their home in it. Their dawn chorus and antics never fail to make me happy. In Paris, since I don’t have my own garden, I get my flower fix from daily visits to the flower shops and markets.
It sounds like you have the best of both worlds! Which is your favorite arrondissement and why?
Each has so much to recommend it and could easily be my favorite. But in recent years, I’ve fallen in love with the 7th arrondissement and feel very at home there. It’s a quieter, more residential area and, at any moment, you can be greeted by the Eiffel Tower popping up as you turn a corner. I love to observe the Parisians going about their daily routines – young fathers tenderly shepherding their wide-eyed children to school, elderly women – always dressed in their finest – walking miniature dogs and shopkeepers bustling efficiently to serve the long queues of patrons. Plus, exceptional boulangeries and patisseries are abundant on every street.
I agree with you on the 7th! I was actually quite adamant about living Rive Droite (I loved living in the Rue Montorgeuil area in my au pair days), but my Rive Gauche husband convinced me to move to the 7th and I was instantly converted. It’s such a pleasant neighborhood with just enough buzz to be vibrant, but at the same time still very calm and peaceful.
I know you travel quite a bit, working out of London, Paris, and Seattle. Can you share some of your best travel tips?
I make numerous international trips each year, including at least one to Chile, where my husband’s family lives. I generally suffer badly from jet lag so try to schedule a few free days when I first arrive at any location. (I SAY that, and truly mean to do it, but no doubt as soon as the bags are down in the apartment in Paris, I’ll be out the door heading to the Palais Royal or Champ de Mars.) Often I’ll arrive several days earlier than I have said I would, before clients are expecting me, so I can get gradually settled in.
Whenever possible, I travel non-stop. Airport transfers are exhausting and a huge waste of time.
I have foreign SIM cards for my phone at each location, so I can be reached by local clients, and have a local data plan (for Instagram, of course!). My on board travel essentials are not glamorous but practical – baby wipes, Emergen-C, protein bars, headphones, reading material on my iPad, lotions and plenty of water. Most important is to keep hydrated and give my immune system a boost.
Those are all great tips. We also avoid airport transfers and flights with stopovers, especially after one fateful trip where we missed our connecting flight. Not worth it! Especially when traveling with a kid!
Tell us a bit more about your new book coming out in March, Paris in Bloom. I’m so excited to finally see it!
In recent years, I spend four or five months a year in Paris. When I’m there, I feel a part of something bigger than myself, something grand and beautiful and important and exceptional. I dress better. I eat better. I feel better, about my creative work and life. But experiencing this myself is not enough. I’m passionate about sharing the magnificent qualities of this city.
I daydream about taking friends and family members on joyful adventures, exploring my favorite streets and gardens and markets and museums. I envision us strolling along, gazing up at intricate iron balconies, marveling at stunning carvings and reveling in the floral beauty that is abundant in the markets.
Paris in Bloom is a thus my romantic tour of the floral charms of Paris – from parks and gardens to floral boutiques, from flower markets to fabulous floral installations in luxury hotels. Woven throughout are images of gorgeous floral architectural details that echo and were inspired by real flowers. It’s my love letter to Paris and my way of expressing my appreciation for the endless inspiration the city provides.
Georgianna’s new book, Paris in Bloom, published by Abrams Image, New York, will be available on March 14th, but if you preorder now and you’ll also receive a free 8×10 gift print signed by Georgianna. Spoiler alert: the print is gorgeous and framable.
Merci mille fois to Georgianna for sharing her amazing photography and insider tips. It’s been such a treat getting the chance to work together on this post!