by Apr 1, 2024

Well, whilst nobody brought along lashing of ginger beer, five club members did enjoy an excellent time in the London Bridge/Tower Bridge area on Wednesday 27th March.

Chris R, Roshan, David M, Geoff and I met up and made the most of a cold but pleasant evening strolling along the north side of the Thames, between these famous bridges. It may not be a very long walk but we made it last over three or so hours, finding a multitude of locations and viewpoints from which to take in the ever-flowing river and/or get a variety of images of many of the famous buildings and landmarks in the area.

I think that, when going to somewhere that is potentially so familiar, it is a good time and place to try different things and experiment with techniques that are going to challenge or test you. From a technical point of view, I decided to take along a selection of filters, as did Chris and Roshan. All who came along also brought tripods and it was nice to find that apart from arousing some passing curiosity, we were left alone and not stopped or quizzed just because we looked “professional”. I am sure many of us have encountered the rather odd view that, just because we have a “big” camera and a tripod, it makes us targets for officialdom to tell us “You can’t do that here!”. Well, Wednesday was one of those times when we were all left alone!

Stairway – David M

Beginning to the west side of London Bridge, on the north bank of the river, we looked towards the Shard and those set of buildings clustered together around the south end of London Bridge. The sun chose that time to place itself in the perfect spot so that it reflected straight at our lenses! We had to wait but I think it was worth it.

Shard ICM – Brian C

We headed towards the Tower after a while and it was up the often-overlooked steps to see what is fast becoming a photographers’ “go to” spot for a great composition of the Shard. We could also wander about the area and try to get a few shots of the commuters doing their best lemming impressions as they streamed over London Bridge towards the station and their journey home. Reflections were very much the aim here as the setting sun still gave us good light. Also, with the variety of lines and architecture, it was a great place to try mono.

Shard and Staircase – Chris R
Tower Bridge Reflection 1 – Brian C
Reflected Shard – Chris R

Staying on the raised walkway, we changed sides and pointed our cameras at Tower Bridge. The light was still doing its thing and with the stream of people heading past Old Billingsgate Market, there were plenty of opportunities to try out people shots. The older buildings also looked good with their special features.

Tower (Bridge) to the People! – Brian C

As we set off to the Tower, the sun decided to turn shy and hide behind a low cloud. No! We had lost the chance to get a sunset sky! We also found the river walk by the Tower had been closed! There went another classic viewpoint. So we headed around the moat side of the tower and saw some excellent “old and new” with the Shard looming over parts of the Tower. As we got towards Tower Bridge, the light of the Tower itself and the design of the moat added nicely to the potential for good, composed photos.

The Blob – David M
Juxtaposition – David M
In the Moat – Brian C

We had a quick walk through St. Katharine’s Dock but it didn’t offer much as the evening wore on. So, it was down to the areas in front of the Tower Hotel to take in the bridge as all its lights came on.

Tower Bridge – Chris R

Here, we all tried our hand at different spots and compositions. Some passers by decided that where we were standing must be good as they came along and pretty much stood on our toes, with their phones in their hands, clearly looking at what was in our viewfinders. Some were happy to chat and ask, others just got in the way. I suppose that it is only to be expected when there are so many people about.

Tower Bridge Reflection 2 – Brian C

We ended up taking a slow walk over Tower Bridge and getting a few more “City by night” shots – again joined by those who took where we stood as an open invitation to get as close as possible and lean over in an attempt to see whatever they thought my lens was pointing at!

City Lights – Brian C

By 8 or so, the cold and hunger were getting too much for some 😊. A short while later saw a gaggle of men carrying bags and tripods fall across a Wetherspoons table and find a few moments to warm up before the food and drink arrived.

Altogether, it was a very good evening indeed. Thanks to Chris for setting this up and giving everyone a timetable and timeline that worked very well. Plus thanks to Chris and David M (also main image at the top is from David M) for providing some images to add and I will add Roshan’s and Geoff’s once with me.

Oh, and we didn’t get anywhere near the Millenium Bridge! So, that’s another evening to plan in the future!

Thanks everyone!

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