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Candles and Prayers, Nôtre Dame Cathedral, Paris, France, 1989

Tourists now by far outnumber hunchbacks in Nôtre Dame Cathedral in Paris. Nonetheless, I happened to arrive during a religious service in which the great cathedral was filled with beautiful singing. Tourists still milled around the outer corridor, but the feeling was magical. I photographed the huge stained glass windows using available light and telephoto lens, knowing that a flash was unnecessary and would be a rude intrusion. Then I noticed these women lighting candles. Opening my camera right up, and using a railing as a tripod to steady the long lens, I snapped this one shot. The result seemed to me to capture the moment.

© 1989, 2002 Richard McGuire