Boston Book Club: A Duck’s Eye View of Boston
Whenever we visit destinations like Faneuil Hall, we see tourists perusing dozens of coffee table books filled with pictures of our city. Since we’ve seen landmarks like the State House and the Swan Boats in person, we seldom pay the books much attention.
But we were intrigued by A Duck’s Eye View of Boston by Demetri and Mina Papoulidis. The Boston-based photographers capture the familiar sights of Boston and Cambridge from the perspective of the beloved birds.
We talked to Papoulidis about how she and her husband came up with the idea, their idea of how a duck sees, and why the idea wouldn’t fly in New York.
Boston Daily: How did you get the idea to capture Boston from the perspective of a duck?
Mina Papoulidis: My husband and I are photographers, and everywhere we go, there are ducks. There are the animals, and the Duck Tours driving around. We’ve always joked that the duck is the unofficial mascot of Boston, so we got the idea that it would be great to do a book about how the bird perceives the city.
Obviously, it’s our representation of how a duck sees Boston. It’s a little bit of a novelty, and it gives us a chance to use our different types of lenses. We love doing the fish-eye lens effect, and we love taking cityscapes.
BD: How did you determine that view is how a duck would see the city?
MP: It’s our depiction. It’s just a quirky way of showing Boston. We love the 180-degree view because you see more in one shot, and it gives a cool global effect.
BD: How long did it take you to photograph everything for the book?
MP: We worked off and on for about a year.
BD: Do you have any other projects going on right now?
MP: We’re actually wedding photographers, so it’s our busy season. Our brides also love the fish-eye view, especially when we photograph dancing at the reception. It’s a little more interesting than the regular lens.
BD: Where did you get the shots from in the air?
MP: We took them from the Skywalk at the Prudential Center. We caught more than the typical camera does from that view.
BD: Where is the book being sold?
MP: It’s available at Newbury Comics. The Children’s Museum bought some, and we’re working with a distributor to sell it at Barnes and Noble.
BD: Do you have any plans to apply the perspective to another city?
MP: We want to get more of New England. Maybe the Cape and the Islands, or hit New York next year.
BD: There are fewer ducks in New York, though.
MP: We’d definitely have to call it something else.