Tag Archives: night
Well that was a lovely, long, bank holiday weekend. I headed out to Berlin, but it was more for socializing that it was for photography and I didn’t take too many pictures unfortunately. By the time I did head out there on the final day I was exhausted, and spent most of my time enjoying just walking around and getting a feel for the place rather than trying to find a location and angle to shoot from.
I was stupidly tired last night when I got home, so my plan of processing an image for today’s post before going to sleep just did not happen. Instead, I fell asleep under my Macbook and awoke 9 hours later, so had to process this one at around 7am this morning. I chose a night time image because it simply doesn’t need to have much done to it; I simply did a bit of sharpening, counter-intuitively followed by some denoise.
I hope everyone else had a lovely weekend.
This was the last image I took while out with with Jim Nix last Monday night….though boy that feels like a long time ago.
After meeting at the Eye and moving on to the usual spot opposite the Houses of Parliament for sunset I opted to cross over the bridge for a little light trail action as the hour turned blue.
Normally the light trail shots are done from the opposite side of the road, but as I hadn’t really ‘done’ this scene since getting the 14mm I decided to stay on the left side of the bridge and see what I could get into the ultrawide frame…it seemed natural that the bridge should be used to create a leading line straight through the image.
It took a couple of attempts to get a bus coming by at the correct speed to offer up the most interesting light trail (I’m still waiting for that day when a couple of fire engines come whizzing by), but I’m happy with the results.
After packing up and heading crossing the road to search for food, Jim spotted Deb Sandidge also taking shots on the bridge (and probably cursing those two guys opposite who are standing around in the shot) – so if we end up in your final images Deb, I’m sorry.
I delayed in posting this last week as every time I look at it I’m convinced that the bridge is not central…but then when I check it out in Lightroom, it is. I’m either comparing two different edits, or the lack of features over the water in comparison to those on the bridge, as well as depth difference between river and pavement, are playing tricks with my mind.
The very last photo I took in Beijing was this one. I was walking around Tiananmen Square with no way to get up close to the Monument of the People’s Heroes due to some of the underpasses being closed for a flag raising ceremony of some sort. Being so far away and without a decent zoom lens meant I had to come up with some other way to capture it and attempt, in some way, to add interest.
I admit I was tired by this stage, so the best I came up with was to try and capture one of the buses going past it as a light trail. That’s what you see here.
I’m not sure I like it that much…but it’s the best I have from this location, and something I wanted to make sure I had a post of.
In other news, I’ve decided to book a trip to Brussels for the weekend so I can walk around and see the few sights it has to offer. I’ve been there a few times before, once while passing through to Ghent and once for a few days work, so I’ve never really had the chance to walk around and get a feel for the city. Nor have I been there with a camera. It’s only an overnight trip, but I’m looking forward to it.
There weren’t many locations I had in mind to visit during my trip to Beijing. I knew I should visit the Great Wall as I was so close. I thought I should also visit the Forbidden City as it seemed like ‘the thing to do’. One of the other items I did have on my agenda was the Opera House as I had seen many images of it previously.
So here it is.
After a couple of minutes of taking images I turned around to find the security guard standing right behind me. He had been looking at the preview on my camera display after I had taken each shot, and then he simply smiled and gave me the thumbs up. A promising sign, I motioned that I would like to step in front of the chain barrier to get a different angle.
My Chinese isn’t great, but I’m confident his response to that request was a ‘no’.
I’m finishing off the week where we finished off last weekend’s image taking on the photocrawl, and that is Leadenhall Market.
We had intended to finish up by taking images of the LLoyd’s building, but they didn’t have their lights on like they normally do so the desire to take a photo there quickly disappeared.
Today is the start of Easter Weekend in the UK, which means we get today and Monday off work. I plan on using the extra personal time we have to do may wonderful things, such as a photowalk, a little website work and, most importantly, napping.
This shot has only recently become available to me, and that’s because I now have the 14mm glass which sits on my camera 90% of the time.
I was in the middle of a photocrawl and had just had a few pints in a pub that you can just see in this shot; it’s the little black sign in the distance behind the telephone box. Before continuing on to Waterloo Bridge I backtracked a little to grab this image.
It was pretty quiet with little pedestrian traffic so I was able to take an uninterrupted shot with ease. The fact it had been snowing on and off helped this image a lot, I think, as the shot wouldn’t be quite as nice if the ground wasn’t wet.
Okay, so for an evening that was very uninspiring I did manage to come away with a couple of images to use in the end; here’s the final one that I will be posting from Sunday night – and it’s the first trip that I’ve made to this spot sporting my 14mm glass which has enabled me to get in pretty much all of this lovely cathedral.
The door you see in the central part of the image is the one that was featured in yesterday’s photoblog so I guess this one provides a little bit of context.
It was still quite early at night when I took this so I was quite surprised to find that there were so few people around; normally I seem to be waiting for some time to get a clear shot.
10 points if you know at a glance where this door is.
I’ll give you a clue, it’s in London.
Another clue, it’s my favourite building in this wonderful city.
Third clue? The building was shown in yesterday’s image.
Still not quite there? The building’s name begins with S and ends with T Paul’s Cathedral.
What do you mean you give up?
I went out to take a few photographs on Sunday and was completely uninspired. Sunset was replaced by the need to grab a burrito; with the hour either side taken up in the pub having a pint or two. Attempts to go climbing a lovely building were thwarted, and before the night had set in for too long I had the desire to go home.
Sometimes you just don’t feel it, I guess. You can go out with the best intentions of taking a load of images, but nothing inspires you and you don’t even bother getting the camera out of the bag.
That often seems wasteful though, and so we headed off to St Paul’s Cathedral, still my favourite building in London, to try and get inspired – and as it was dark I decided a light trails may be the way to go.
I took a couple of images of St Paul’s itself – I think 4 in total – and then headed to the road to set up and wait for a bus or two, which in that area didn’t take long to arrive.
Today’s image is two exposures with one bus on either side of the road which I’ve masked through to. I added a little sharpening in CS6 before taking it into Perfect Effects by OnOneSoftware where I added, in varying opacities and locations, the Cybercool, Urban Sickness and Autumn filters before masking back in a little more of the red colours from the buses.
From a session that left me completely uninspired I’m happy to have left with one image I like.
As night descended upon Didcot Parkway, we made our way further around the giant stacks of Power Station B. They take on a completely different feeling by night time; whereas by day they are simply monolithic slabs of concrete, the night time silhouettes seem to make them shrink in stature but grow in ominousness. Night time also makes you want to be on the other side of the fence slightly more, standing directly underneath them instead of glancing from afar.
I hear that this particular power station will be decommissioned at the end of March, so who knows what the future may hold for the site, and indeed for making it to the other side of that fence.
On Saturday night I headed over to Canary Wharf with Conor and Jay to try and grab a sunset…though that was a bit of a non-event on this occasion. We then repaired to a bar for a little relaxation before Jay and I continued to a lovely building currently being built. If I had forgotten how unfit I was during my recent bout of illness this was quickly brought back to mind as I ascended 28 flights of stairs…slowly.
The views were pretty good, and it was certainly nice to see this area from such a vantage point, but the better views were to be had at the top of one of the cranes, which is where this image was taken.
It was a long and late night as I arrived home at around 4am, but a fun one.
Hope you all had a nice weekend.
The Pan Peninsula in Canary Wharf is 40 something floors of mostly residential space. At the top there is a bar, The Attic, which boasts great views of the O2 and the larger buildings that those will be familiar with when viewing a skyline shot of Canary Wharf itself.
Here I managed to get the full length of the building as a reflection in the docks at Harbour Exchange Square; we were very lucky to get nice calm waters on this night – though at times there were a few ducks that were swimming around and causing a little bit of a disturbance.
Gosh I seem to have managed to capture quite a few snow images this year, which isn’t bad considering our snow didn’t last too long here in London and I only went out in it twice.
This is a spot that will be recognised by many, especially if you have ever visited London and taken a walk down the South Bank. I’ve attempted to shoot this scene many times as I really like how the wooden boards of the pier look in the foreground as they lead up to the tower. The problem(s) with my previous images here have mostly been to do with the OXO sign which often had a lightbulb that was blown whenever I went to take a photo, or had a spot light on the side of the text that was too bright. The other thing that makes me happier with this image than those shot previously from here is the fact I was not using a wider lens and can simply fit more of the scene in.
I overcame great adversity to take this shot, so I hope you all appreciate it.
Well I say adversity, I was stood on a bridge with four other photographers. It was the kind of bridge that shakes ever so slightly when people move on it – not enough to make you sea sick but enough to make the image from a long exposure a tad blurry. It took great skill to time this shot so that I could get as little movement as possible. That and some forceful barking towards my friends to keep still
The bridge is slightly at a skewed angle and offset from where I would otherwise want to take this shot, however it did offer a nice reflection on a night where the water was nice and calm, so I quite like the results achieved here after a little perspective shift in CS6.
For those unfamiliar with London, this is Canary Wharf, the business district of this wonderful city.
I met up with Dylan, James, Jay, John and Ollie the other night to take a few photos around Canary Wharf. As always, it started in the pub before we headed out into the cold to shoot some night time long exposures. It wasn’t overly long before some people made their way homes, and Jay and I made our way back to the pub.
After a spot of dinner and a reviving beer we went back out there, and I think the food must have revived me because I felt much better for it and was back in the mood to take photos. Randomly walking around we came upon this scene, which we had seen before from Conor. We of course had to capture it ourselves.
After a failed attempt at purchasing the Canon 14mm at the end of last year due to delivery issues, and then debating whether or not to simply go to New York for a weekend to pick it up, I decided to simply click ‘buy’ on it yesterday so I should get the new lens delivered today. I hired the lens for my trip to Iceland last year so know that I like it, and I’m excited to get this into my bag of gear and start using it around London. The widest I can currently get to is 24mm so the additional is going to be noticeable. Yay.
It’s still amazing to me what you can see from a relative low rooftop in London.
Sure, the foreground of this image has the lovely Southwark Cathedral and a train about to enter London Bridge station, but check out what you can see towards the horizon. You’ve got recognizable features such as Battersea Power Station, Houses of Parliament and the London Eye; you also have a couple of interesting focal points, which are unknown items to me, that are the glow of a white light in the distance and, to the left of that, some sort of light motion which has been captured. If I were closer to it I would suggest it’s a jet of steam coming from the top of the building, but at that distance and with that luminosity I’m not so sure.
Also, this was the ‘boring’ side of the rooftop, with lovely views offered from the other vantage points.
All of the ski lifts that I could see while in Austria have little signs on the masts, but unfortunately I couldn’t read the local language so didn’t know what they said. Ahem.
Logically, I thought, they would simply make sure the ladder doesn’t extend down to a reachable distance if they didn’t want anyone to climb them; therefore, up I went.
These things look like they would be pretty solid but were actually quite shaky structures when stood at the top; I left my camera down in the pitch black field and used my remote trigger to set of the exposure which lasted for 30 seconds.
Here’s the image John took while I was setting up for this shot, but just before I donned the hoodie and climbed the mast: Milky Way
Hope everyone has a lovely weekend
We had four days of hot weather and blue cloudless skies in Austria.
Though this meant harsh lighting and, at times, unbearable heat throughout the day, it also meant that we could see the stars easily at night time…and this meant I could try my hand at a little late night star photography.
I have had one attempt at star trails previously; but as this was in the UK on a cold night it really didn’t come out very well. The long exposure I did at the time meant the camera got hot, and as it was so cold the lenses just fogged up. In Austria it was the perfect temperature at night to do them.
I set up my camera beside this church which is on top of a hill in Wildschonau; it had taken some walking to get there at night and I had managed to lose my glasses in a field somewhere (recovered the next day while it was light – hurrah). I used the Promote Control to set off a timelapse sequence and took 30 second exposure for a 30 minute period. The inside of the church was lit by a solitary candle and taken over one exposure of around, I think, 90 seconds.
The exposures were then dropped into Photoshop and layers changed to the Lighten blending mode, followed by a little bit of post to get rid of plane trails and work on the foreground. I’m pretty happy with the final result.
Thanks very much to Scott Wood for the tip on how to quickly and easily produce this within Photoshop and without the need for additional software plugins…it really was simpler than I had imagined it would be.
During my recent photowalk with Dylan, James, Jay and John we ended up at this point around Millbank. Everyone was happily walking along when I called out for them not to take a step further, as if I had just seen a landmine they were about to step on. Actually I had just seen this stretch of path out ahead of us and wanted to try and take a shot of it empty before it was ruined by joggers…or fellow photographers.
I added a lot of contrast to the dark areas of the shot during processing, and think it is interesting to look at the original in comparison to how the completed version came out:
This was a fun shot to do. The building in the image is the HM Revenue and Customs on the north side of Waterloo bridge.
A few of us had just watched a firework show form the top of KRT (for those familiar with my work you will have seen lots of images from that location, which is shown in this image at the top right. It’s the silhouette behind the bit of red, which is the OXO tower) and after being escorted out of there, our last successful trip up to date, it was a little early to head home. Thus, we found ourselves here before moving on to a third location.
The stream of passing cars below were a great bit of added interest, and the fisheye essential to be able to get all of the required features fully composed.
Thanks to everyone for their comments, retweets and so on over the past few weeks. Life is a little hectic just now with long hours at work, needing to find a new flat and so on – as a result my online interaction is minimal. I hope to be back into the flow after April 12th.
Swing the camera left by 120 degrees or so from where I took yesterday’s shot and you get this view of Battersea Power Station.
What this image does is remind me how much I love shooting with wide angle glass, and when attempting to get both the moon in the sky and the reflection in the water, my 24mm (as was used here) does not cut it at times. If anyone wants to give me a loan of their 14mm I would be very happy to take care of it for you; it’s not as if I have a history of dropping expensive items or anything.
Not much to say about this shot otherwise; it’s an iconic building that has been shot many times – mostly from this location. I don’t get tired of looking at it, and hate it when I see the development plans saying they’re going to get rid of the chimney stacks…though I think the latest plans for this location keep those in place.
This seat has one of the best views in London. Millennium Wheel on one side, as you can see, and the Shard to the other – plus plenty of views in between. If you’ve been a regular follower of my work over the past year you would have seen what I mean.
My Head in the Clouds image was taken from this spot, just on a different night, and so this image will give you a better idea of how it was achieved.
Have a good weekend everyone.
It feels like a lifetime since we went to Canary Wharf to take some night shots, although all too recent that I dropped my shiny new camera – so when looking at this image, which was taken that night, I can’t decide if it feels like it was taken last year or last week.
I quite liked this building on the left, which is the hotel in my Curtain Call shot from the same night.
There are a few figures in the image; some of these are just people in the area, however there are also two photographers. Dylan is closest to the camera standing with tripod, and John is crouched in the distance. Over to my right was Jay taking this shot.
Another shot taken from my recent walk around the Victoria area, this one is of Westminster Cathedral, not to be confused with Westminster Abbey which is a little grander than this nice little place.
This is taken at 16mm on a full frame and just reminds me how much I love to shoot wide. I really need to save up and buy a nice 14mm this year as that would allow me to show so much more in the shots, including the tripod, and my feet.
I hope everyone had a nice weekend. I had a pleasant walk in the rain on Saturday, but a hangover ruled out any productivity yesterday and I spent it lounging around in self pity.
A new week now though, let’s hope it’s a good one.
Friday already, and I thought I would end the week with a shot of Canary Wharf taken a few weeks ago while I was out with Dylan, James and John. As I was taking these exposures a boat
drove wandered sailed past and left a nice light streak across the bottom third of the image; I would have liked it to be a little closer to leave the trails slightly lower, but am happy enough with what they add to the shot.
It was a pretty cold night and we had contemplated walking to Greenwich from here, around 2 miles, and back up through the foot tunnel to Canary Wharf. Instead we jumped back on the tube to go back a stop, and a few shots later ended up in the pub. This was followed by a brief trip to London Bridge and another stop in the pub.
I’m officially going to stop calling them photowalks and refer to them by the appropriate title of pubcrawls very soon.
Last week I celebrated one year of this photoblog and posted a few of my favourite shots from the previous year. Thanks to everyone who voted for their personal favourites out of this batch, I’m pleased to announce that your preferred shot was The Day The Music Died