Maison Nicolas

I was curious about the padlocked wooden box with the words "Maison Nicolas".

I was drawn to the pastel colour of the bicycle and the colour of the tyre. I feel that they reflect the colour of the sand and the sky. I was curious about the padlocked wooden box with Maison Nicolas printed on the side.

Is Maison Nicolas a real place? Is it a house of fashion or something else? If it exists, where is it located? What’s in the box?

A Google search using the keywords "Maison Nicolas" and "Asbury Park" led me to the website of Lush Wines - Beers & Liquors which is located in downtown Asbury Park on the corner of Bond Street and Cookman Avenue. The webpage featured a white wine, Chardonnay Vin De Pays DOC Consensus, from a winery in Bordeaux called Maison Nicolas. I was puzzled at first, and then it hit me. The lettering on the bottle of Chardonnay Vin De Pays DOC Consensus matched the lettering on the box. A quick look at my photograph of the bicycle and my intuition was confirmed. The box on the back of the bike is about the right size for a bottle of wine.

So now I have new questions. Are the bicycle and box and art installation? Are they part of an advertising campaign by the winery, Maison Nicolas? Or are they the personal property of a resident who loves wines?


The image was made during my [Saturday afternoon trip to Asbury Park with Bhavna]. There was a distracting sign to the left and an unattractive boardwalk bench on the right. I went for the square crop to remove these and entered the frame to focus on the bicycle. I had read that the rule of thirds can be ignored for square photographs and that entering the subject makes the picture feel more balanced. I don’t remember where I read this.

As I pushed the shutter, a man and his dog suddenly entered the frame from the left. I quickly dispatched both in Adobe Photoshop using the lasso tool and content-aware fill.

Author: Khürt Williams

I work in application security architecture and I live in Montgomery Township, New Jersey with my wife Bhavna. Passionate about photography, you’ll find me writing about cybersecurity, tropical aquariums, terrariums, hiking, craft breweries, and capturing birds on camera. My prose is like a caffeinated squirrel—fast, unpredictable, and occasionally insightful.

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