A city break with a camera – in retrospect #3

Here we are at daybreak at the One New Change shopping mall, looking from the entrance corridor across to St Paul’s Cathedral. This is one of the shots that I came for – the cathedral full-frontal and the reflections in the aisle windows. Pity there was no red sky, but I managed to be early enough to have no passers-by in the frame. The glass reflecting that blue light is the roof of the entrance-stairs to the level below – pity about that too – and that pole really is leaning like that.

Once I’d taken the shot I wanted, I wandered upstairs to roof-level and took this shot, looking across, past St Paul’s dome, across the City and towards the London Eye in the far-distance.

The image above was my final shot at One New Change, capturing the Ball and Cross above the cathedral dome. Then, downwards and onwards to the British Museum.

The Museum really is an amazing place. I would have loved to stay and browse, but I had a busy day’s schedule of other places to photograph. Next stop, Heal’s department store near Goodge Street Underground Station – but the spiral staircase there was my featured photo, so you’ve already seen that.

Crossing London, I headed for the Natural History Museum. Problem: it was the first Saturday in January – school holiday time still, and there were probably a hundred thousand other people queuing to see inside. I couldn’t even get out of the underground station because the queue stretched out even to inside there. Once outside, it snaked back and forth across the road and for hundreds of yards even to the entrance gates. It took the greatest part of an hour to get that far. In the image above, you see some visitors leaving through one door and, to the left, you can see just the first few people in the queue to get in. You can’t see the hordes behind.

By now, my schedule was shot to smithereens, so I did some queue jumping to park my tripod and take this shot as I apologised to those I’d offended, by explaining that I wasn’t trying to get in – just to snatch a photo. As I crouched behind my camera a woman official came to ask what the blue blazes I thought I was doing. I explained again. She said that she thought that I’d need permission even for a shot like this of the entrance. I pointed out all the people who were busy taking photos with their mobile phones. She pointed to my tripod as being different. She told me to wait there while she asked her supervisor’ I clicked my shutter and walked away, on to the shops of Piccadilly.

By now it was lunchtime, so I found a café to feed my hunger on the way.

The shot above, as you can see is of the Burlington Arcade in Piccadilly. In my next post, I’ll show you a couple of shots from inside that arcade and from the Piccadilly Arcade across the way from it – plus some more typical touristy shots that I took that afternoon.

Today’s featured photo is of the spiral staircase inside Heal’s Department store. Management there were most helpful in allowing me to take the photo. A member of staff showed me the way and said that they had lots of visitors who came just to see the staircase.

EXIF data were: I used my Pentax K-1 24 MP full-framed sensor dslr camera coupled with a 15-30 mm f/2.8 lens. Shutter speed 1/15 secs @ f/5.6 and 15 mm. ISO 800. Shot taken leaning over and bracing my arms on the stair-rail.

Author: writingandphotography0531

I am a retired local government officer. At that time, I was an IT manager and had associated responsibilities for training. I have previously been involved, in various organisations, with aspects of industrial training and management development. My hobby is photography and, until recently, hillwalking in Snowdonia. I have just written my first novel, Persephone and the Photographer, published as a Kindle eBook.

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