Friday Street

London continues to enjoy gorgeous spring weather. I had a day off today and headed out to the streets of the Square Mile today to see if I could catch some magic in my photos. Not sure about the magic, but there were some nice moments out there I saw and captured, like the above. Is it just me or does it look a lot like the good guys vs. the bad guys in this? :D

Looks like I've been converting more of my shots to BW recently. Something about that changing aesthetics I was rambling on about in my last post I suppose. Although sometimes when I am out there I see certain things and scenes in black and white rather than in colour. Not sure if that makes sense, it's a bit hard to explain since I've been always shooting majority of my photos in colour. But sometimes, especially in the old parts of London, I tend to just see and prefer things monochrome.

It might be also the suits, not just the arhchitecture. Go figure. :) I love how these guys were bunching up together in this scene. The tie makes it for me personally. Men and bags. Always a good moment to capture. :D

Saying that, there seem to be awful lot of men in my photos from today. I blame the demographic of the City of London! ;) It's kinda creepy how many people out there are on mobile phones, all the time. And look, once again I went for some eye contact. Not sure how long this phase will go on either. :D

He was very cute, and had about the same attention span as I do. Not sure where he was gazing up to, I didn't dare to lose the moment. I'm always a bit nervous shooting babies/kids anyways. Something about the respect to the little ones, but he was too cute to just walk past.

Single? In London? Looking for The One? Look no further than Love Lane in the City of London! It's full of guys just waiting to be picked up. It was quite funny actually. I don't usually mix equipment whilst out there, but I spent a long while just waiting for something to happen at Love Lane and also caught the below on my mobile phone camera:

Seriously ladies, they are just ripe for the picking! :D

This couple was super cute, too. ;) I couldn't resist her in her pink and all.
Young love…

A quirky spotting of today was this stowaway monkey. Poor little fella, having to travel like that! :D

And speaking of monkeys (ooooooh, snap!), I also bumped into Michael Portillo today. He seemed to be filming some sort of interview on the Millennium Bridge. I couldn't resist snapping this picture of him. I actually bump into a few celebrities on the streets of London, but most of the time I try to act all cool about it (like majority of Londoners do), but really inside I'm going "OMG I CAN'T WAIT TO PUT THAT ON TWITTER AS SOON AS I'M IN SAFE ENOUGH DISTANCE!" :D Not so much about Portillo though…

Side effect of spring time: yucky smoochie couples all loved up in the parks of London. Lucky that I've made whole business of shooting a series of them then isn't it? ;) Loved the woman on the left in this scene. The composition isn't as strong I'd like it to be, but I was out with my 50mm prime lens today, so had to make do with this. Actually, this is probably one of my favourite photos I've taken this year. ;)

Also happy to report that: I tanned a bit today out there, I'm keeping to my word of venturing out from my geographical comfort zones still, there's another wedding I'm doing assistant photography for tomorrow and as a result I've been working on a "serious professional website". When it's up and running I'll let you know. Have a lovely weekend! :)

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Soho Sunday

I had this funny urge to start tidying up last night about 11.30pm and it continued to this morning, but really it was such a gorgeous day today I just couldn't stay in and clean. So, inspired by some photos of Nick Turpin, I took to the streets of Soho today to see what comes my way, like clever parking by fellow Londoners. ;)

My aims and aesthetics seem to evolve and change constantly by what I see and experience in my life and this affects my photography. I suppose it's a natural progress, but it doesn't stop amazing me every time I notice it. Today, unlike the usual, I was after some contact with the people I was shooting.

  What a difference it makes to connect with the people out there on the streets. Some find it hostile, but mostly I get away with a lot. And I mean, a lot. :)  I think being female has a lot to do with it, and to be honest I don't mind. Being a woman and a street photographer has always put me in a minority of the minorities in the photography circles, so I'm used to the challenge. It's actually quite amazing how many people don't mind having their picture taken when you are gracious and open about it.

Although, the suspiciousness and hostility is part of it all. Trust me, when it comes to connecting with people, I'm not going to start make it a regular, confrontational and/or aggressive thing. There are street photographers who do that for the reaction they get, but that's just not how I roll. :D

There were some interesting things going on today in Soho. It's not a part of London I go shoot to often, but in the spirit of the last entry where I was talking about moving out of my geographical comfort zones it was good to see and experience somewhere I know, but don't often document.

And I'm glad I was out there. It felt fresh, it felt challenging, it felt good. And spotting and catching stuff like this makes me very happy. :) Sometimes it really is in the little things…

The little things like movement… He was trying to grab a photo of the giant electric socket art installation above me. Me instead was trying to catch him doing something interesting in view of that window display. So I caught him going all dance-y on my in synch with the mannequins. Fair trade, no? :D

As a side note, I think I am shaking off the colour red for now and seem to be replacing it with arrows. :) There were a lot of subconscious(?) arrows juxtaposed with things today in my photos going through them. Something I took away from doing project rainbow last year is the fact that I am more observant of colour and it's relationship to its environment. Just something about red that has stuck with me the most I think. :D

Have no idea what was going on with him, but liked it; liked the sign above him, like the shot. Simple as. And all that colour in this is orange, by the way. :D

This was shot from the bus window on my way home. I usually turn my camera off and put it away when I make my way home. I don't know why, it's a strange ritual really. But this man caught my eye and I love these posters by the King's College at Aldwych. I think there is a great shot still waiting to happen by Mr Maurice a bit further down this bit…

And this my friends is my personal favourite from today. It's one of those photos that just makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside actually. Love the comment about Oyster cards, and him looking inside his hat. A weird and wonderful pair of things. Al and all, it's been a lovely weekend; it's been relaxing, productive and creative. A perfect balance really. And I'm glad I got to see something fresh through my viewfinder today. ;)

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my monochorme life

Unusually it's taken me a while to shoot this black&white Kodak TMAX 400 film in my Olympus PenEE half frame camera. I could blame the weather, the stresses at work, the other stuff going on in my life -  but let's not go down that road again. :D The important thing is I did manage to finish it, develop it and now is the time to share it with you. On a sidenote, I do think I am still a bit partial to Fuji when it comes to BW film (I <3 Neopan 1600!)

We are deep into spring now and carefully dipping our toes in the pool of early summer already. The atmosphere in London changes this time of the year so much. The whole city is embraced by fresh green which makes people more easy to smile, and everything in general looks so pretty and classic. Apart from the allergies this is one of my favourite times of the year. I enjoy the transformation from grey to vivid colour.

This time of the year is also pushing me to go a bit further away than the usual street photography hunting grounds. I seem to spend half of my photography life on the South Bank (see above *ahem*), so it is time to go anywhere and everywhere in London. It was so much easier couple years ago somehow, so I need to shake myself out of this groove a bit!

It is actually quite incredible that there are still corners of central London I've not found before. There is a lovely little part between the Victoria Embankment and Northumberland Avenue I stumbled upon accidentally couple weeks ago. I bet it is a little candy box of great photos during week days.

Another old favourite hunting ground I've gone back a bit more recently is the Piccadilly/Jermyn Street area. I love the shops and architecture in this old-ish part of central London. And people there are so quintessentially British somehow, between all the tourists. Another little candy box for me. :D

So, I love you and leave you with this personal favourite from the roll. Can I just say that I really do love my little half frame camera! eBay is a great candy box itself for lovely old school analogue cameras. I've got such bargains from there. Which reminds me, I should take my Polaroids out one of these days, too. I think I still have some film in one of them that expired in the 90's. :D

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showers of petals

 I've been a busy bee these past couple weeks. Not only have I moved office with my whole team at work, struggled to finish that B&W film in my half frame camera, but I also had the honour to assist and be a second photographer for my friend Marianne of Marianne Taylor Photography a week ago Saturday in a gorgeous wedding she needed a little hand with.

Marianne is incredibly talented and since I've known her really supportive of my little photography ventures. It was great fun to be part of the day for the couple and for her. I really got to experience the best of both worlds – my inner romantic got to go to a lovely wedding, with access all areas – and the photographer in me got to shoot people, with permission, access all areas! Perfection! :D

It really was a gorgeous day, but at the same time a steep learning curve. It's made me think a lot about my so-called little ventures in photography as well. Most of all it was great be of help to capture some sweet memories. Shooting weddings is really stressful, as there are no second chances. If you don't get the photo there and then, that's it. Shooting street in a weird way is great practise for capturing those candid moments that happen for only a split second during such an important day. :)

I've come away fulfilled with energy and excitement for what we achieved and what I was able to help Marianne with as the venue was challenging as much as it was gorgeous. If you want to see the whole wedding set please see Marianne's blog for the rest of the photos. I'm sure to add some more here, too but tonight my computer is throwing a tantrum and I'm too tired to continue to fight with it to try and edit some more photos. ;) Hope you enjoy these four favourites though!

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