Bookshelf of the Week: Stepan Mazurov’s creative ‘noire’

B and W - Stepan Mazurov

It’s been a while (just over a month ago actually) since I’ve featured a bookshelf shot on Bookshelf of the Week solely for the creativeness of the shot, but I want to feature one today because I’m particularly taken with it.

This is a photo taken by Stepan Mazurov of some of the bookshelves in the Trident Booksellers and Cafe in Boston. Any other shot and this image wouldn’t have stood out as anything special. But Stephan’s decision to go for such an acute upwards angle (a bookworm’s eye view perhaps? Hehehe), and to present it in monochrome, makes this an exceptionally appealing shot.

I love how the bookshelves from this angle, appear to tower even more skywards, not only making the viewer seem small and insignificant, but mirroring the heaven-reaching book stacks that all bibliophiles have scattered around their homes. The lights too offer a heavenly glow, as if the gods themselves are confirming their reverence for all things bookish. Am I babbling? You bet! I’ll stop!

Thanks for a great shot Stepan

About Rob

Rob, a self-confessed bibliophile, is without any hope of rehabilitation. He gets unnaturally excited over anything book-shaped, and if book sniffing were a crime then he would have been locked up years ago (which wouldn't bother him in the slightest provided his cell was lined with books).


  1. Weird … you see them stretching to heaven and I see them on the ground. I think something is wrong with my life perspective — glass half empty and all that.

  2. Rob (Twitter: robaroundbooks)

    I see what you mean about the shot’s perspective looking as though the bookshelves are on the ground. It’s the lights though, that show clearly they’re in a ‘stretching to heaven’ position 🙂

  3. Bart's Bookshelf (Twitter: bartsbooks)

    I’m in the stretching to heaven camp… (but then I’m vertically challenged, so most things appear that way!)

    Such a great shot though. Feels like a lovely warm place.

  4. Stretching up to heaven okay, but if it’s noir then they’re more likely a road running right into on-coming traffic.

  5. Rob (Twitter: robaroundbooks)

    Yeah Mr. James, not my most celebrated post title ever is it? 🙂 I saw black. I thought ‘noire’ (as in the French for black), but then that also brings up the notion of of ‘noir’. So it’s all kind of messed up. Not good 🙂

    Then again, taking your road analogy, those lights could well be headlights, and the bookshelves…errr OK I think l’d better quit while I’m kind of ahead.
    Thanks for your input CB