Clowning around in Moscow – Photo Tip!

What’s better than a sunny autumn afternoon to walk around Moscow and take picture of unusual sites?  The many boulevards of Russia’s capital are an ideal place for a pleasant stroll, with their trees still green and lush.  An easy choice is that of Tsvetnoy Boulevar (Russian: Цветно́й бульва́р), served by a metro station by the same name.

The boulevard was laid out in the 1830s to replace the river-bed of the Neglinnaya after this rivulet and the adjacent large pond had been earthed up and it was called Trubny Boulevard until 1851, when its name was changed to Tsvetnoy (from the Russian word for “flowers”) because of a nearby flower market.

The most notable landmark is a lofty column supporting the statue of Saint George slaying the dragon where Tsvetnoy Boulevard ends at the intersection with Petrovsky Boulevard. The statue is basically a “3D version” of Moscow’s Coat of Arms.

The most beloved landmark, on the other hand is without any doubt Nikulin’s Circus. Opened as the Solomonsky Circus on 20 October 1880, it is one of the oldest circuses in Russia. It was the only circus in Moscow between 1926 and 1971, and still remains the most popular one. Among the famous performers who worked there were the clowns Karandash, Oleg Popov, and Yuri NikulinNikulin managed the company for fifteen years, and it has borne his name since his death in 1997. In front of the building is a remarkable statue of Nikulin getting off of a full scale bronze convertible car, which is extremely popular with children, who can seat in the car and have their picture taken next to the beloved clown.

Like in most of Moscow’s boulevards, the central part of Tsvetnoy’s is a pedestrian island and here, in front of the circus you can find more clown statues. The feature image of this post is the state of a clown on a rainbow coloured unicycle, with a little kid falling off of a suitcase he’s carrying and a huge ombrella constantly dripping water. There is no sign identifying a specific clown, but I think this one looks like Oleg Popov.

Photo Tip!
Ok, this is an “easy one”, but when you are photographing statues, do take advantage of the fact that they don’t move! What I mean by that is that you can take your time walking around and trying out different points of view, different perspectives and different lenses. Try to get very low and exaggerate the perspective with a wide angle lens (with the added benefit of a huge depth of field to have everything in focus), like in the photo above, or get your camera right over the statue, like in the picture above, to get an original point of view.

Moscow Clown 2
I think this statue looks like the famous Russian clown Karandash!

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Would you like to take part in a photowalk or a photo tour of Moscow or any other Russian destination with an English (and Italian, Spanish and French) speaking photographer (me) showing you the sights, the best time and viewpoint(s) to capture them in your images and helping you improve your photo technique with practical tips? If so, do get in touch and we’ll be happy to create an unforgettable, tailor-made experience for you!

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