Running around Brussels

Last weekend I covered a series of 'pop-up' concerts organised in the Parc Royale as part of the annual car-free Sunday (journée sans voiture). Another photographer was supposed to be there as well, but he didn't show up so in the end I covered all 12 concerts myself. Sometimes I had to run between the four stages, but I had a great time.

I was able to get really close to the musicians, and it was nice to shoot concerts in daylight for a change – for once, I could show musicians and audiences sharing the moment and the space together.

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During the afternoon I ran into a number of old friends as well as meeting plenty of people for the first time. Belgians know how to have a good time, and the atmosphere was friendly, relaxed and open. The beer flowed and there was an occasional whiff of grass, but I didn't notice anyone getting out of order. Between concerts, I especially enjoyed talking to (and taking pictures of) people looking at an exhibition of old black and white photographs of Brussels and Tournai set up across the park.

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Every year I am surprised by how clear the air is, how brilliant the light is, on Brussels' car-free Sunday. It's astonishing how cleanly and sharply one sees everything after just a few hours without the city's usual blanket of exhaust fumes. For a photographer, it is heaven.