April was a low profile month, blog-wise, but it’s been a little hectic in the real world, mostly involving travel. However, a short trip to London and then to Oxford afforded some photo opportunities.
Approaching Storm, Westminister Bridge
Westminster Bridge was nearby and afforded an opportunity to capture some images in cloudy weather.
(Technical Data: Nikon D810 handheld with 24-70mm f/2.8 lens, extended to 32mm. 7 Exposures bracketed at ISO 400 and post- processed using the Photoshop HDR tool)
That evening, the twilight blue provided a nice counterpoint for the illuminated London Eye, a 443-foot-high Ferris wheel, erected in 1999. The lines were long, our time was short, and so we opted for the ground-level view. The building to the right is London County Hall which served as the city of London’s seat of government through most of the 20th century. It now houses a variety of tourist attractions and an upscale hotel.
One of the problems in these evening shots was the fact that important elements of the scene were in motion (such as the Ferris wheel) which meant that a short exposure was necessary.
London Eye at Night
(Technical Data: Nikon D810 on tripod with 24-70mm f/2.8 lens, extended to 24mm; Three exposures 1/15th sec. @ f/2.8, ISO 800; three images photomerged)
The Elizabeth Tower, better known as “Big Ben” was renamed in honor of Queen Elizabeth in 2012 to mark the occasion of her diamond jubilee. Here the motion problem was the presence of numerous pedestrians walking by me.
Elizabeth Tower (“Big Ben”) and Parliament Building
(Technical Data: Nikon D810 on tripod with 24-70mm f/2.8 lens, extended to 24mm; Eleven exposures 1/15th sec. @ f/6.3, ISO 800; eleven images photomerged)
Moon and Elizabeth Tower
Those who know me will not be surprised to see the moon included in a twilight shot. Since the vantage point was in a traffic lane, I decided that setting up a tripod would be unwise.
(Technical Data: Nikon D810 handheld with 24-70mm f/2.8 lens, extended to 70mm; Exposure 1/8th sec. @ f/2.8, ISO 400; two images photomerged)
The Monument commemorating the Battle of Britain is relatively new, constructed in 2005. It honors the heroic World War II air campaign during the summer and fall of 1940 that prevented the German Luftwaffe from gaining air superiority, making a land invasion impossible. It was the first defeat for the Germans and marked a turning point in the war. It is located on the Victoria Embankment a short walk from the Westminster Bridge.
Battle of Britain Monument at Night
Again, the movement of the London Eye (red semi-circle in the background) required a fast shutter speed.
(Technical Data: Nikon D810 on tripod with 24-70mm f/2.8 lens, extended to 24mm. Exposure: 1/50th secs. @ f/2.8, ISO 3200)
Getting up before dawn is far more difficult when your body clock believes it is 1:00 AM, but the plan for the next morning was driven by visions of a rising sun striking the Parliament building across the bridge from our hotel. As the image below shows, however, Mother Nature had other plans that day.
Early Morning Rain, Westminister Bridge
(Technical Data: Nikon D810 on tripod with 24-70mm f/2.8 lens, extended to 45mm. Exposure: 2 secs. @ f/16, ISO 200)
So, before my camera got too soaked, I headed back for breakfast and a taxi ride to the train station.