St Pauls and a faulty tripod....

Hi and welcome back.  I hope Spring has indeed sprung wherever you are - I'm certainly appreciating the warmer days and later nights.

A couple of weekends back, I was fortunate enough to shoot inside one of London (and Europe's) most famous and iconic buildings - St Paul's Cathedral.

St Paul's Cathedral was built by Sir Christopher Wren in the late 17th Century (in the aftermath of The Great Fire of London).  To give some idea of its sheer scale, it was the tallest building in London from 1710 to 1967.

St Paul's is (along with Parliament/Big Ben) one of the key London sites for tourists and visitors- normally however, photography of any kind is not allowed inside the cathederal. 

This image is entirely down to the splendid people at London4All (one of Instagram's best photographic groups) for somehow arranging an after-hours visit where we could shoot away to our hearts content.  To be able to do so without hundreds of people milling around made it even more special.

To call the interior stunning actually does it no justice - several of us, rather than snapping away, took a few minutes to just soak in the magnificent surroundings.  Despite this, I know there are angles and details that I missed.

Having finally got inside St Pauls, I had the unwelcome surprise of realisng that my tripod was unusable - "frustration" is a mild understatement for how I felt!  This 5 second exposure shot was only possible becuase a fellow shooter lent me his tripod (thank you Greg!).

Having fianlly got the shot I wanted (looking towards the High Altar and featuring some of the beautiful ceiling detail), I opted for a slightly subdued edit, lowering the blacks and raising the clarity.  I hope you like the final image. 

A huge thank you to London4All for organising this visit - they're a fab bunch so give them an Instagram follow: @london4all

This image is in my London gallery and available as a print.

Please feel free to get in touch and thank you for reading.

Thanks, Mo

 

 

Abseiling for a great cause

One of the very best things about being a photographer is the opportunity it gives me to work with some fantastic people and causes.

Case in point - Orchid Cancer, an amazing group of people who do so much good work and whom I'm priviliged to have worked with for a couple of years now.  I've covered all sorts of events for Orchid from Christmas drinks to fancy-dress charity runs to The London Marathon.  Always stimulating, always varied and as you'll see, often challenging.

Last week, I found myself on top of Broadgate Tower in the City of London, covering one of Orchid's more spectacular fundraising events - namely, snapping the brave souls who each abseiled down the Tower to raise money for Orchid.

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The sun was shining, the views were incredible and every single one of the 40 fundraisers achieved their aim and abseiled down the 541 feet to terra firma.

To get these shots, I was positioned alongside the abseiling platform and was actually straddling the very edge of the building, whilst tethered to ensure I didn't take any unplanned trips.  Was I nervous?  Yes, of course I was!

From a photographic perspective, it's not often you get the chance to shoot from such a vantage point.  Broadgate Tower directly faces the City of London's skyscrapers - just about every London landmark can be seen from here.

Technically, the shots were relatively straightforward - I shot in Manual Mode with a flashgun to enable me to correctly balance the backgrounds and the abseilers.

Well done Hannah and Manjeet at Orchid for yet another superb event!  For more information on the great work done by Orchid, please visit their website - maybe I'll snap you at a fundraising event sometime!

Oh and in case you're wondering, yes - I DID abseil myself!

Thanks as always for reading,

Mo

Blurry Eye - an experiment with the London Eye

Like any city, London has its fair share of iconic locations/buildings and views, all of which are photographed from every possible angle on a daily basis.

As an example of this, think of any iconic building in your nearest big city.  Now think of the different images you've seen of it.  Now challenge yourself to shoot a truly original view or interpretation of this building.

The point, you may agree, is that it's actually very hard to come up with a fresh view of a much-photographed icon

So what to do?  We can't all hire a helicopter or crash a posh apartment-with-a-view in the pursuit of a fresh take. Well, I can't anyway - good for you if you already have a helicopter or a posh apartment-with-a-view!

The underlying theme here is that I challenged myself to take a fresh perspective on the London Eye.  Along with Big Ben and Tower Bridge, the Eye is an iconic structure that has been photographed to death over the years.

Here was my solution:

There's nothing original about my viewpoint here - on any day, you'll see tourists and photogrpahers a-plenty on London's North Bank snapping this very view.

Where I tried to be different was go abstract, and present the London Eye in abstract form.

To do this, I deliberately 'de-focussed' the shot, playing around with different amounts of blur, in order to emphasise the overall form of the Eye and its surroundings in 'bokeh' form. 

Bokeh is photographer-speak for "out of focus" - it's that ethereal, delicate circular blur effect and is often present in the backgrounds of portraits.  Here, I just made the bokeh the main feature of the image.

So no, nothing is in focus - deliberately so, as I wanted to create an abstract image with colourful blur.

So that was my London Eye/Bokeh experiment.  I wouldn't do this for every view, landmark or building that I come across but I like it in this form, and hope that you do too.

Please feel free to share your thoughts.

This is available as a print, as are all my London and Places images.  Please contact me to discuss print/canvass options.

Have a great weekend and thanks for reading!

Mo

Autumn Sunset

You may have guessed that I get a particular kick out of my cityscape photography and that sunset/twilight is my favourite time to shoot.

Why sunset?  Well.....the colours!  The light from the setting sun bouncing off the clouds gives a range of wonderfully deep colours while it's just dark enough to help city lights really stand out.

So here's a new addition to my London Gallery: the city enjoying a gorgeous Autumn/Fall sunset, as viewed from Tower Bridge. 

I used a slow shutter speed (25 seconds) to capture the movement of the clouds and turn the motion of the River Thames into a smooth blur.

From left, the landmarks are City Hall, The Shard and on the right of the image, the Walkie Talkie building.

As with all my London and Places shots, this is available as a print/canvass - please get in touch to discuss sizing & pricing options.

And a huge thank you to All About London for featuring this on their Facebook - I'm always grateful to those who help increase the audience for my images.

Thank you for reading and I hope you like the image.

Thanks, Mo

 

 

Location Couple Shoots

As well as shooting weddings and portraits, I also offer location pre-wedding shoots for couples about to get married - or for those that are already married!

Here's an image from one of my more recent shoots at the stunning Royal Holloway University in Surrey.  It's absolutely one of my favourite locations as it oozes history and has the most gorgeous architecture.  The fabulous setting provides many opportunities for interesting shots with great backdrops.

The location also helps colours really pop in images, especially with intricate Asian outfits.  Here, we tried to get a sense of motion as the recently-married bride twirls for the camera.

For more information on couple shoots, please get in touch via the Contact page and we can discuss the packages and locations which are right for you.

Thanks, Mo

The photo that keeps giving

I posted this image a couple of weeks ago and wrote about it's background and it's selection as a featured image on Instagram and well, it turns out that it's even more popular that I first believed.

This week alone, I've had several people enquire to see if it's availanble as a print and in the last 3 days, it's been selected by no less than three more Instagram groups as a Competition Winner or Featured Image.

A big thank you to the mayLDNer, shutup_london and IG_Street groups for the accolades and recognition.  All the groups have large memberships and very high standard of photography so I'm especially grateful to have been selected.

And yes, of course it's available as a print - please contact me for more info from the contact page.

Thanks, Mo

 

Singapore is a Featured Shot on Instagram

I'm really pleased that one of my Singapore images was recently selected as a featured Shot of The Day by one of Instagram's biggest user groups (IGSCCITIES).  The standard of images in this group is fabulous so I'm especially grateful.

The image shows Singapore's skyline at sunset and was taken from the lovely Marina Bay during blue hour - that short period just after sunset when the sky turns wonderful shades of blue.

Here's the Instagram link - I hope you like the image too.

Remember, all my Travel & London images are available as prints and canvasses so please get in touch for more details.

Thanks, Mo

Trafalgar Square in Silhouette

The latest addition to my London Gallery is up - Traflagar Square in Silhouette.

Taken on a gloriously sunny afternoon, the silhouettes of Nelson's Column and the George IV statue really jumped out at me.

Trafalgar Square in Silhouette

If you like it, please contact me as (like all my London and places images) it's available as a print.

I would love your feedback and thank you for reading.

Mo

A Random Monday London Photowalk

A day off? More to the point, a sunny day off?  Time to get into London with a camera.  

Covered a lot of ground today - South Bank, Borough Market, The Shard, several spots in the city and St Pauls.  

I'll be sharing some of the images in the galleries soon but in the meantime, here's a couple of images taken with my iPhone.  

Thanks, as always, for visiting my site. 

Mo

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Graffiti, Leake Street

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The Shard

Charities Gallery

My newest gallery is now live - this time showcasing some of the photography I've done for Charities.

I've been lucky enough to work with some fabulous charities across a wide range of events and and always come away struck by the sheer dedication and hard work of the various staff and volunteers. 

The photos are from verious events I've shot for Richard House Children's Hospice and Orchid-Fighting Male Cancers  - two brilliant causes. Please click on the links to find out more about them.

And of course, I hope you enjoy the photos.

Mo

Nice to be tweeted by The Guardian!

A pleasant surprise on my Twitter feed earlier today.

One of my images has been tweeted out by The Guardian no less, as part of their Witness photography collections.

Here's the image:

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And here's the link:

https://twitter.com/guardian/status/556511521187299328

The theme of the Witness collections is "cricket" and the image was one i captured during a T20 match at The Oval in South London.

Thank you @Guardian and @GuardianWitness