As it's almost Halloween, I thought now would be the perfect time to share a few autumnal graveyard photographs with you. What is more suited to this season than a historic cemetery covered in golden leaves?
I've been a bit of a graveyard fanatic since ... well, since I can remember. I was always the kid who loved the macabre over typical kids fair. Forget Disney princess; Lydia Deetz was my heroine. My brothers would always let me watch 18-rated horror movies while they babysat, and I started reading Clive Barker novels at around the age of 12 (yeah, probably not the best idea). So although I wasn't an actual goth as a pre-teen/teenager, I loved to spend time wandering through cemeteries, wondering about the lives of those buried beneath my feet.
The fascination definitely started with horror movies, but was encouraged when, from around the age of seven, my family spent a few summers at a campsite near Dublin situated next door to a church and graveyard; you could see graves from the 1600s while playing a round of min-golf.
Over the past few years while on holidays, I've been able to fit in a few visits to some historic cemeteries. The first of these was the astounding Père Lachaise Cemetery in Paris' 20th arrondissement. Established by Napoleon in 1804, it is the largest cemetery in the city, and the most visited cemetery in the world.
There was a number of reasons for my visit to this wondrous place, other than my graveyard obsession. A large number, if not most, of the graves are more than 100 years old and are ornate, heavily influenced by Parisian architecture. For someone in love with the Art Nouveau style as well as Gothic and Belle Époque architecture, it is a true place of pilgrimage.
It is also the resting place of Oscar Wilde, a writer I've been devoted to since I was in my teens. I just had to see the tomb Jacob Epstein created for the Irish poet and playwright. (I have a whole post dedicated to that tomb coming soon.)
I took these photos back in November 2012 when I first got my hands on a DSLR. Hopefully some day I can go back and take a few new photos after almost five years of photography practice.
Have any of you visited this beautiful place? Where else should I add to my list of cemeteries I must visit?