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"...ensuite à Paris et n'écoutant que son inclination pour les Beaux-Arts, il prit dans divers ateliers, les leçons des Grands Maîtres Paysagistes de l'époque".
Bulletin de la Société Historique et Archéologique de Langres, Volume IV, 1893, pp. 15-21.
We know that by 1841 Girault de Prangey had acquired at least one large cumbersome wooden camera capable of holding daguerreotype plates up to 240 x 190 mm. To use this he would need a large, awkward wooden tripod, at least one heavy brass lens, noxious chemicals and various tools and accessories for supporting the plates during the ever-precarious steps of the process. By 1842 when he started travelling away from home in France he seems to have acquired at least one other smaller camera, more lenses and a collection of solid wood boxes carefully designed to store hundreds of shiny daguerreotype plates. We know that for two years he toured historical sites and cities of the Mediterranean and near East, presumably with several large trunks loaded with the personal and professional paraphernalia of an itinerant daguerreotype artist.
Girault de Prangey's ambition was to compile a comparative history of architectural styles. It was not to record the topography or photograph the landscape of these distant and exotic countries. There are few real landscapes in this archive, in which architecture dominates above all else, but where they exist, as in these ten examples offered, they punctuate the collection with glowing expanses of water and brilliant blue-tinged skies or startling trees silhouetted against the skyline.