Broadway in black and white

Yesterday afternoon, on my way to St James’s Tube, I once again passed, and photoed, the ever changing scene that is The Broadway (or something similar), as it takes shape. It’s going to be a cluster of Things of a Certain Size.

Yesterday I decided I’d photo it all in black and white:

Well, no. What really happened was that the place itself presented itself to me in black and white, with only very vestigial traces of colour. I was photoing in full colour.

When I first saw that big word there, “MULTIPLEX”, I thought; Hey, they’re building a multi-screen cinema! But it turns out that all it is is that a company called Multiplex got the contract to construct this place.

New word

Cranebow:

Found this here.

LATER: From where I’m sitting, there is small and unwelcome gap just before where it says, below, “Monday 27 January 2020”. Can any passing WordPress experts explain this, and thereby help me get rid of it? (My guess is: Me asking this will cause this gap to vanish spontaneously.)

And I was right! It did vanish. And me writing the above paragraph enabled me to spot it, because the entire paragraph turned blue. A missing “/” was the problem, following the blue “here”, which, when inserted, abolished the gap. So, WordPress experts, forget about it.

Remember to photo the ordinary things

This is great advice:

Wallsend in 1963 by Colin Jones. If you are a young photographer who is just starting out remember to photograph the ordinary things in life, eventually time will make them extraordinary.

Got this from my Twitter feed. Twitter is not only bile and stupidity. It depends who you are following. I follow some photoers. That they typically have different political opinions to me is, for me, a feature rather than a bug, because I see into other political minds.

A decade of photos – one from each year

I originally got together these photos, one for each year of the decade now ending, with Samizdata in mind. But then I did a posting looking back at Christmas Day for there, with lots of photos, and another posting there with lots of photos felt a bit superfluous. So, here they are here.

Left below: February 2010 – Piccadilly Circus.
Right below:January 2011 – Beyond the Thames Barrier.

Left below: July 2012 – A South African gets ready to bowl against England at the Oval.

Right below: September 2013 – London Gateway takes shape.

Left below: March 2014 – Detlev Schlichter speaks about Austrian Economics.
Right below: July 2015 – Sunshine bounces off the Broadgate Tower and lands outside Tate Modern.

Left below: August 2016 – The Oval Pavilion (see above) as seen from the top of the Tate Modern Extension.
Right below: Also at the top of Tate Modern, a photoer photos the Shard through a ball.

Left below: April 2018 – The statue of Sir Keith Park outside the Athaeneum.
Right below: September 2019 – A model of Old London Bridge.

I didn’t spend a huge amount of time picking these photos out from the archives. Aside from trying to pick out photos that I hadn’t blogged before, I just had a rootle around until I found a nice one for each year. But a different day doing the rootling, and there’d have been ten entirely different photos. But I like these ones, and I hope you do too.

How London is moving downstream

What do you suppose this is?:

Okay, no silly games, this is Disneyland London. They have in mind to construct this during the next few years, out east, on the south bank, on that bit of land that sticks upwards into the beginnings of the Estuary (“Swanscombe Peninsula”), just this side of Tilbury.

The details don’t interest me. I’m pretty sure I’ll never go, not to the finished object. I don’t know when or even if they’ll build this.

What does interest me is that this huge project, even if it never gets beyond being thought about and puffed in the media, illustrates how the centre of gravity of London is moving inexorably downstream. The other Thing as big as this in that part of London is London Gateway, the big container port now being built on the north side of the Estuary, a long walk beyond Tilbury.

The City – 5 years ago

Horrid weekend, having a cold that I’d postponed on Friday because I had a meeting to host. Sleep shot to hell. Tidying up to be done. So, quota photo time, or so I thought. Inevitably, it got out of hand:

All of that was exactly five years ago, to the day. Having assembled them all, I couldn’t then postpone shoving them up.

There was a Lego Gherkin next to the regular Gherkin. They still thought, or were pretending to think, that they were building the Helter Skelter, which they have now turned into something else, even bigger and a lot duller. Otherwise, it all looked much as it does now.

Tasting the sunshine out east last August

Yes, last summer I went on several exeditions to such places as the Dome, and beyond. Here is a clutch of photos I photoed in the beyond category. On August 11th, I journeyed to the Dome, then took the Dangleway across the River to the Victoria Docks, and walked along the north side of them, ending my wanderings at the City Airport DLR station:

There are two of these favourite sculptures to be seen, in Photo 7 and Photo 11.

There are 35 photos in all. I think maybe my favourite is 33, which includes an advert that says: “OH REALLY?” I like that, for some reason.

Photo 27 has a sign, on the side of the Tate & Lyle factory, saying “TASTE THE SUNSHINE”. It was a very sunny day. I count three that include shadow selfies (23, 24, 31).

It is so much easier doing this kind of thing than it was at The Old Blog. (My thanks yet again to Michael J, who did this new blog for me.)

My four most favourite London sculptures

All photoed by me, in 2015, apart from the last one, which was photoed by me earlier this year:

They are: the statue of Mercury on top of Telephone House (also featured in this photo); the Big Olympic Thing; Pavlova; and the Optic Cloak.

I have many photos in the archives of all of these four. All of the above photos show context, as well as the Thing itself. I love these sculptures for what they are, but also for what they do for their surroundings.

There are many, many other sculptures and statues in London that I like a lot, but those four are my current front runners.

Queen Victoria backed by modernity

I love statues. Mostly, you don’t have the exact same one in several different spots, so when you see a familiar one, you know you are here and nowhere else.

And while checking out a statue near Blackfriars Station recently, I encountered another statue that I also like:

Photoing statues can be tricky, and I found this one particularly difficult. Very black and very shiny, lit by a sun that was crashing in from what seemed like entirely the wrong direction, was an awkward combination of circumstances, which made photoing Queen Vic’s face especially difficult. But, the outline comes out well enough.

Two of the photos, 5 and 9, have benefitted (or I hope they have) from a little post-production enhancement.

Photos 7 and 8 each feature a crane, and also the Oxo Tower. I like how the green of that container-office (7) echoes the green of the faraway tower. The crane is one of many working on the big London mega-sewer. Photo 9 features the tower of Tate Modern.

Quota sunset (gallery) from a year ago

A year ago exactly. October 1st 2018. While journeying back from out East on the DLR:

That’s exactly how they came out of the camera. I don’t know why they vary so much in their degree of luridness, peaking with the one in the middle of the cranes, but they do so vary.

Illustrating an opinion I hold about how Unreal Photographers like me are best advised to photo sunsets. Advice: put Things in front of the sunset.

I particularly like photo 6, taken from the very front of my DLR train. The point being, DLR trains don’t have drivers, so provided you get lucky with one of the front seats you can photo directly forwards.

Also, note how, in photo 3, the shape of the Shard echoes the shape of a typical London church spire. That was, as I recall Shardchitect Renzo Piano explaining before the Shard had even been built, deliberate.