specks of London

For a moment I stepped in the documentation spot today, as I had to bring my camera with me to work and it seemed like a waste not to do anything with it after. So, on my way home I took a short cut… well, a detour really, via South Bank and this is what I saw:

For the past two three weeks the weather reports have been predicting rain showers for us, like today. Most of the time though the skies have stayed sunny with these kind of beautifully ominous clouds. But no rain. It's lovely really, almost like living in a painting!

The fashion trends have brought bright colours to the streets of London this summer. Some of it is that naff 80's neon bright, but some of it is lovely and refreshing, like this yellow. On cloudy and supposedly rainy days it's nice that people bring brightness to the day with their fashion and style. Even I have succumbed to buying a yellow top this summer, and I haven't really worn yellow since I was 8 years old!

Things on the South Bank have improved greatly in the past couple of years. The renovations of the Royal Festival Hall were completed this month, and there was a grand opening. Its face lift has brought new shops, cafes and restaurants to the area. Even further down the old concrete blocks make an effort as a result. National Theatre has got astroturf (fake grass) in front of it for people to enjoy the summer and special events. They even grew real grass on one of its main walls from May onwards! Seeing it being watered was quite a sight! :D

My new favourite feature of the new Royal Festival Hall is the fountain on the upper terrace. They have timed these rows of water shooting up so people can walk in between them and not get wet. The children go mad for this fountain, but so do the adults. It's a great place to hang out if you need a quick pick-me-up after a hard day at work, or just for the cooling down effect on a hot summer day.

I know it's not much, but at least there was something to update (with proper photos) rather than me going on about how I'm not taking any photographs at the moment. I felt terribly rusty today and it had been a long day at work, but I do hope you've enjoyed these (and the longest day of the year)!

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wasteland of ideas

I think I should rename my blog, even if it's temporary, to something like this –>

As it appears I'm currently living in some sort of a photo-vacuum. This means I'm just not taking as many photographs as I was over the past autumn and winter. This is partly due to somewhat busy personal life I am conducting over here in "real life" (it's as scary as it sounds), but mostly because at this time of the year I get irritating symptoms of allergy and hayfever. In practise it just makes taking photos and blending in a bit more difficult for me. Even though I love the increase in day light hours during the summer in all honesty I just can't wait for August – September, when the nights are a little bit closer to the day and pollen a thing of the past. Well, at least for another year.

In the meanwhile I haven't abandoned photography altogether. I have been spending time in the darkroom, marvelling the magic of images appearing on blank paper. It's quite silly how exciting something like making and creating my own prints still is for me.

Most of all London is still fabulous and I'm still enjoying and experiencing it. I'm just not documenting it at the moment. I think sometimes things are better just being experienced, and not being buffered by being seen through a viewfinder and a lens. I'm sure there will come a time when I move from this just experiencing spot to the documenting one again. Just bear with me.

P.s. I read something truly beautiful today on my way home from work. I joined Bookmooch earlier this spring and it remains a great resource of reading and recycling books for me. I got Howard Buten's When I Was Five I Killed Myself in the post today and the preface included this little quote from the author:

" Books are like babies.
They come out from inside you,
and once out you want people
to hold them in their hands.
They don't have to love them,
just hold them in their hands."

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I love all things Japanese. Lately I have been watching this commercial far too many times in a row on YouTube, but I can't help it, it puts a smile on my face every time I see it. Besides that song and animation, they're ace. :D

For your enjoyment!

Next week I have some time off work.
Maybe this means I will actually take some real photos!

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thoughts at night

Most of the time I'm so used to living and being in London that I loose myself in the facelessness of the big city. Sometimes London just feels like a familiar small town spreading out to infinity. But there are moments in my existence here that are short yet crystal clear and so acute – so full of this pure energy, be it of humour or emotion, that I'm honestly grateful for being shaken up a bit from the dull greyness of every day life to remember where I am and how I feel about London. It's even more incredible when I am able to capture something in that moment to share and show to other people. This was one of those moments. Today, at Tottenham Court Road I saw this:

… and I felt alive and in love with and within London again.
How could I possibly not?

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