Turn a corner in old London Town and you are reminded of the past and present.
Down a dusty old London side street, leading into a busy open market stands a grand image of working life of yesteryear. It took me by surprise at the time. This wonderful moment on a massive board and no-one had noticed it.
I was drawn to it straight away (I love anything to do with how we used to live), when I noticed this guy on the phone just sitting there.
It struck me just how powerful the moment was. Here was a guy, sitting on a chair, using a mobile phone. A classic scene of 21st Century lifestyle with the back drop of 1930’s living perfectly in line with each other.
I had to get in close to take the picture and for the guy to notice me. I hoped he would become a little annoyed. I wanted him to look at me in the same way the gentlemen where in the picture. After standing there for a few minutes just looking at him he gave the look you see.
For me this is a perfect example of old and new and how technology, fashion and attitude may have changed over time, our personal living has stayed the same.
This was my favourite photo from a day shooting in London and probably one of the small handful of images I am really proud of.
Taken with FijiFilm X20 in Green Market London.
Dodging walking shopping bags, using stealth to win gaps between fleeting meets all anew.
A sudden parting opens thicken smog.
Stood slouched into sensible comfort and with confidence in the third aid gripped by plastic hands, a transparent statue blind to the vultures squawking by.
Only single serving friends, obliged to such limp existence, humbled to accept silver coin, but an obvious dislike in twisted half arsed smiles.
Turn any corner in old London Town and you meet interesting people.
Walking along the Thames Bank, past the Art Deco Tate gallery (a rich part of town) and you come across a little bar on a corner high up and out of eyes reach. A perfect spot to have a quiet drink, sit with old friends and watch the world go by.
I came across these two gentlemen doing just that. They seemed to be in a very important conversation as no happy smiles were being exchanged.
I could not help but stop, raise my camera to my eye and compose the shot.
Immediately they both turned and glared directly at me. An intimidating moment for most. From their looks, even I felt like bolting.
Knowing My intrusion had annoyed them. I simply looked back, gave a giant wave and smiled like a Cheshire Cat.
Immediately this calmed things down and both gentlemen replied with a wave and a smile. This image was captured between that.
After, I said thank you and they were most happy. Hoping it made their day.
It goes to show that a little courage and a lot of cheekiness is heart warming and what you think to be an awkward moment can actually be a happy one.
(FujiFilm X20. App Priority. Shot in RAW. London)
So today was a “me” day. I had planned in my intentions and was jolly well out to achieve them.
Having a day off work and I wanted to take the time and stealth my way through the crowds of Nantwich happily snapping interesting people going about their business.
The weather was some what predictable. Warm and golden, bright at 6am only to be presented by rain and wind three hours later, which was the time I made it to town.
The weather in mind gave me ideas of wonderous reflection shots of grumpy shoppers dodging high street puddles and with market day ahead I was expecting a fairly top shoot.
To my dismay town was dead……. I was rather pipped at the lack of people. In fact it was easy to count the crowd. I hoped that every corner of our little Tudor town I strolled would present me with a flush of hurried strangers with bags in hand. Sadly I was in dissolution.
This made my planned day somewhat bland. With no one around and the few that were seeing me a mile off, I did my best with what I had.
After two hours of standing around in a ghost town I sort refuse in a coffee shop. Being British I ordered a pot of tea and made my way with tray and china to find a seat.
It was in my seated position that most of my photography for the day was caught. Sneaking my camera into position and carefully taking a photo without being scene.
The UK has laws about street photography. It is okay to shoot in a public place but to shoot inside is frowned upon. In many cases it is just not very English.
A lovely couple having brunch amused me with their converse. Reading from rag mag newspapers to the sophisticated financials they carefully updated each other on events whilst not listening to the latter.
I had already been caught out twice in the coffee shop and decided to head home when I spotted this man. He was looking at the Tudor architecture when I walked by. I liked his hat. The classic straw style that you might use when potting in the garden or drunk at a festival. It looked cool sitting proudly on his head.
Taking a terrible shot before I decided to brave the moment and get in very close to him. No more than two arms lengths between us I waited until he caught my lens and took the shot.
With his white beard and spy like glasses he held an air of mystery with hands in pockets.
Of course I looked back after and smiled. I like to think he was wondering what I was taking picture of and the courage in me after felt good. I had succeeded on what was a very bad day of shooting.
(Shot using a Fujifilm X20 in Aperture Priority around F5 -F10 at ISO 1600 & in RAW, edited in Photoshop)