Returning to street photography in London to meet up with other street photographers. It felt so good to get back to some creative photography, and the challenge of re-tuning my eye to the street after such a long time away. I do not usually like to shoot during the day, however, a walk including the South Bank, St Paul's and Covent Garden offered a few opportunities and interesting locations with some great light.
Venturing out into London's Soho and Chinatown for the first time since COVID and feeling a little rusty in my photography. Photography is a creative art, an expression of how the photographer sees the world, however, it is also a skill and requires practise and refinement. It has been difficult to maintain both creativity and my photography skills over the summer, in part down to lockdown restrictions but also because my style of photography is mostly done either in the evening or night. The summer months do not offer the creative opportunities for my love of night time street photography.
Looking in - shooting in the rain and refining my style of nocturnal street photography in Cambridge. Looking for ambient lights and interesting characters, I am drawn to vibrant colours at this time of year and like to capture glimpses of life in an artistic way.
February / March 2020
Earlier in the year (pre-covid in Europe), I travelled to SE Asia, unfortunately, the spread of Corona-virus meant that I had to cancel my plans to travel to Japan. However, I did manage to spend some time travelling in northern and central Vietnam as well as some well earned beach time on Koh PhaNgan in southern Thailand.
This was my first trip to Vietnam and it did not disappoint - a beautiful country to explore and photograph, full of interesting characters and warm people.
As much as I love photographing London, there is nothing like travel and new experiences to get your photography and creativity fired up. So, an epic four days in Paris were perfect to explore new locations, fine tune my street photography and play with a more classical style. Even in the middle of a general strike (no Paris metro!!) and pouring rain, Paris was beautiful and endlessly charismatic.
This was also an opportunity to work with the very talented Paul Sanders and to discuss a "conscious photography" approach and photography as a meditation or therapy. This is something I have been working on and exploring for a number of years, so it was great to meet someone with a similar approach and understanding - very inspirational.
I have found photography complimentary to meditation and conscious living - it is a means to focus attention and stay present. It also has a flow to it and once in the flow, it allows the photographer to open up and "receive" the creativity to create images.
Shooting in London for the day with street photographer Mark Fearnley; this was a day of high contrast light and silhouettes. Not normally my preferred style but very interesting to learn from such an accomplished photographer.
Street photography explorations around Soho in the rain - I love this time of year for street photography with dark evenings and ambient lights. The rain has helped create atmosphere and is great for exploring reflections and working the "curiosity gap" to conceal subjects and leave the story up to the viewer to interpret.
Looking for reflections and working abstracts using the ambient lights around Soho and Chinatown - I am drawn to these strong colours to create abstracts that require a "little further investigation" to understand what is happening in the image.
Street photography explorations around Shoreditch and on London's South Bank - I love this time of year as the evenings draw in and street photography moves into the night. The transformation of London at night is stunning and offers completely new opportunities to shoot.
Street photography on London's South Bank - looking for light rather than subjects and paying particular attention to the interplay of light and shadows.
Street photography explorations in London's Soho and Chinatown - looking for reflections and distortions of reality.
Exploring London for some urban "grunge" shots in May 2019 - paying particular attention to lead-in lines and symmetry. This is quite a different style for me but I had fun experimenting and seeking out these images.
I worked hard on positioning for the alignment of the buildings (and to stay out of the wind) to get this shot - I never think of London as futuristic but I changed my mind walking around the Lloyd's building with the wind howling through the steel work - super eerie!.
February 2019 - Hong Kong
Five days in Hong Kong - I had been looking forward to exploring Hong Kong but it far exceeded my expectations. Hong Kong is probably one the best street photography locations in the world with literally a never ending variety and supply of subjects.
Exploring some of the poorer districts of Kowloon, I hired a guide to walk me through some of the more challenging areas. The Chinese culture feels quite safe but a guide certainly helps and can bring to life the experience of poverty in Hong Kong that "1 in 5" people experience every day. This is not the side of the city that many tourists venture but it was a fascinating insight to HK life.