Fantastic Photographic Trip Around London
Last week I had an opportunity to do some photography of known landmarks in and around London. After all, what is the use of having a high resolution camera if you are not going to use it. This was my first real chance to have a ‘Fantastic Photography Trip around London’. I really enjoy doing long exposures. In fact, long exposure photography when done correctly can really pay off with amazing results.
Just close to Tower Bridge is group of office blocks called More London, between the office blocks is this small stream which separate two buildings. For the above shot, I really had to get low and almost get my camera in the water. I wasn’t going to get my camera wet, so I used my trusty tripod to keep my camera safe and secured while I composed the camera for this shot.
As The evening wore on, I took more long exposures of Tower Bridge and of the Tower of London. If you don’t know what you are doing, long exposures can seem very daunting. With the four photographs above, it is impossible to hold the camera in your hands without getting camera shake and not your photographs totally out of focus. So you do need a sturdy and strong tripod. Next, you need to use the camera settings to your advantage. All of the above photographs are crisp and sharpe. This means I set my aperture above ƒ/16 to ƒ/22 to capture as much details as possible.
When you have small aperture (higher the ƒ/ number, the aperture closes and becomes small), as a result, you need more light to compensate. I focused on something which allowed for greater detail and set my shutter speed somewhere between 20 to 30 seconds.
As there is less light at night time, you would be thinking you need to raise your ISO (Light sensitivity Meter). I kept my ISO at 100 as to keep the digital noise to a minimum and keep my photographs more crisp and sharpe.
>I had once seen a photograph of an old red letterbox and background blurred out. So while I was heading to the Natural History Museum one day. I spotted this old red letterbox and I couldn’t help but take a photograph. I opened up my aperture as much as I could go, I adjusted my shutter speed and then acquired the shot I was looking for. I was really pleased with the overall composition of this photo.
The only thing I regret not doing, was looking at the front to see if the letter box had E I I R (E R for the initials of our current Queen) or G R (George V – 1910 to 1936) You can find out here what all the symbols on our red letter boxes mean.
Natural History Museum
One of my most favourite places to visit is the Natural History Museum in Kensington, London. There many exhibits on show and yet it is TOTALLY FREE to enter (yes I did say its FREE), but they do ask for a voluntary donation when you enter. When I first arrived, there was a VERY long queue one side of the Museum, as the main entrance was closed off to the public.
I decided to see if there was another entrance, and sure enough on Queens Gate, there was another side door entrance point. The queue was very small compared to the other line of queuing people on Exhibition Road, which would have taken about an hour to get inside.
The only real problem with school vacation times in the UK, is the fact that there will be lots more people walking around and doing the same thing you are. Because I was not allowed to use my tripod, I just rested my camera ever so carefully on my backpack; hoping that no-one would knock me or knock my camera. Again I managed to capture quite a beautiful shot. As there were lots of people walking around, think it gave this photo a lot more life.
Back on the Streets
After I had finished taking photographs at the Museum, I went back outside on to the streets. I started walking back towards the Underground Tube station, where I noticed this young woman doing her own photography. Her camera looked rather old and I think it was an old 35mm. I couldn’t quite tell from the angle I was stood at. I don’t think she noticed I was taking photos of her either, at least I hoped not. Luckily you can’t quite see her face.
After resting my poor sore and swollen feet, I managed to head back to the London Eye. I had taken a photo of the London Eye a couple of years ago. This time the London Eye was lit up in Red rather than colours from the rainbow. The bright red really stood out when the light reflected back off the Thames. This was another photograph I was really proud of. The prices for the London Eye do vary and start from as little as £24 if you book online.
There are lots of places you can visit and trying to do everything in one day is IMPOSSIBLE to do, as I learned the hard way. Take advantage of the public transport and look up the Underground tube system for connecting attractions and landmarks. I still need to head back down to visit the places I wasn’t able to squeeze in to 2 and half days. As most of the famous landmarks are spread out, make sure you have a pair of comfortable walking shoes and a bit of spare cash, just incase you need to catch a bus or tube train. The Tower of London prices are £28 per person with family bundles on offer, with concession prices of Children and OAP’s.
If you want to avoid traffic jams, don’t take your own car in to the centre of London if you can avoid it. Park up or leave your car at the Hotel (if they have a parking lot) and use the public transport. It will save you having to find places to park and costly parking charges, plus the congestion charge if you head too far in to London.
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