A special engagement session - part 1

Well this was a rather special engagement session for me. Yes my couples all show enthusiasm and energy, but Liz and Chris spent all day going to various sites in London, not only that but an extremely cold and snowy London. Their stamina and energy never faltered for a long day, it was no surprise to learn that they have both completed the London marathon.

I was lucky to get to London, the airports had seen much disruption due to snow and ice. So it was nice to open our photography with a few images showing some snow. Certainly the grey lighting and covering of snow lent themselves to more graphic compositions, a lot of these earlier shots were better in monochrome to make full use of the conditions.

Battersea power station is such a massive landmark, again the conditions were great to convey the nature of this building.

With a couple who know London so well it was quick and easy for us move through our list of areas to cover, looking for slightly unusual compositions and some lesser known corners of the city.

Even with the colour image below it mainly looks monochromatic, until one notices the splash of colour from the sole of the shoe.

Here's an area I wouldn't have known about, but Liz knew she wanted a picture amongst these beautiful pillars. A slight restriction was the stack of tables there, but I have to deal with things like this without delay and find compositions that work and eliminate distractions. An exposure to enable me to make a higher key picture, with a little use of flash to highlight the couple, meant I was able to realise my vision and make best use of the location.

While by St. Paul's I noticed buses in the background and thought about the shot we see here, of course just when you want a bus there isn't one, or it's going at the wrong speed and stops, or there's people in the way! But with a bit of perseverance I got the shots, thank you for your patience Liz and Chris!

This trip to London also gave me the opportunity to see a few sites that I had never visited, a walk across the Millenium Bridge and onto the Tate Gallery.

It is good to see the use that some buildings have been put to, the Tate is another old power station now used as an art gallery. But no time to admire the exhibits as I had to try and produce some art of my own. I immediately recognised the beauty of the backlighting and sheen from the concrete floor. I also wanted to show Liz and Chris as tiny figures in this vast industrial cavern, drawing attention to them by the use of a slow shutter speed, blurring other people walking by. A result well worth the effort in the end.

A little break for lunch and a chance to warm up, then we were out to play at dusk. A lot more colour in the following pictures, using the artificial lighting from the city lights and the remaining ambient light in the sky. There's always a short period when these light sources balance and give a nice colour in the sky.

One of my favourite images of the session is the next one, a fairy tale scene with the beautiful blue lights on the trees and the London Eye. I chose the order of our night shots carefully to make best use of the dusk light, this image allowed for a darker sky so could be left until later. I was troubled with keeping the rain off the lens, but in the end the droplets of water actually add to the overall feel of the picture.

Then to conclude a memorable day a quick visit to Tower Bridge. Thank you very much to Liz and Chris for this opportunity, we have some amazing pictures that will provide you with a lovely memory of your life in London.

Look out for part 2 of this engagement session in Guernsey in another post, coming soon.