It’s always nice for me to come back to London on a sunny summer day. Although it seems to get busier every year with more people walking around, which could be a bit stressful for some, I love this city and it has that ‘something’ that is always asking me to come back. Having a “London Day” at least once a year won’t harm you, and I’ve had a few this year so far; there is always something to see and enjoy and some opportunities to take great photos.
The day started with us going to the Royal Academy of Arts to visit ‘The Lost Album’ photography exposition from photographer and actor Dennis Hopper. Over 400 black and white photos, mostly portraits and street photos from his hippie era (1961 to 1967). I really enjoyed this curated selection of the 18000 photos he took in those 6 years with the Nikon 35Ti camera he had bought in Kyoto.
After this, we went for a walk and that was when really special things happened. We were passing in front of Big Ben and realised that a group of four men were hanging from one of the clock faces of the tower ready to do some cleaning. This is one of the few times you can see the most famous British clock not showing the correct time, or at least partially, as the other three clocks were still running perfectly.
I took some photos of the men working with my 24-70mm racked out at 70mm and at that moment I wished I had brought my telephoto with me! But it’s London, and you never know what’s going to happen next, so luckily I managed to find a spare telephoto lens. And it wasn’t any telephoto lens. The guys from MPB Photographic were in Westminster Pier selling a Canon 1200mm f/5.6L USM and anyone could give it a try! So I did. I pointed that huge telebazooka thing at Big Ben and I promise I saw one of the hanging men as if he were 3 meters away from me. It is a really clear lens!
Up until the 11th November this year, they are showing thousands of red poppies around the Tower of London as a memorial to the soldiers who died in the First World War. The display is called ‘Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red’, and represents the blood shed by soldiers on French soil. They are adding more and more poppies every day and they have planned to plant the amount of 888246 red poppies by November. The same number of British soldiers who gave their lives in WWI.