Big Ben, London, England

Big Ben, London, England

London is many things to many people; iconic, historic, arresting, intriguing, frustrating. The main thing for me though is that it's simply beautiful and, at the right (blue) moment, becomes thoroughly intoxicating.

This shot was grabbed on a day trip to London to catch some photography exhibitions. As there was going to be no check-in luggage required, there was going to be too much risk in taking an expensive tripod with me that might be refused as carry-on. The response? Try one of those Gorilla Pod jobbies and see if that fit the bill.

These babies are good, but small. The ones designed for SLRs are sturdy and are certainly up to the job, but their proximity to the ground and the lack of a flip-out screen on my Canon 6D made for tricky composition, but it worked. All I needed to do was fire away at the remotest chance of a set of decent light trails, but as this is a mid-winter shot, the trails proved not to be a problem; dusk dropped down smack bang in the middle of the rush hour and there were double decker busses to beat the band! All that was left was for me to shoot before the headlights from oncoming traffic came in to ruin the shot.

I love the way the lights and the painted street lines lead right into the shot, but I particularly adore the way the trails stop just before they engulf the base of Big Ben. Unplanned magic, but when you’re in the right place, at the right time, with the right equipment it’s amazing how often it’s possible to pull it off. A bit like life in general, really.
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Keywords:Big Ben, Blue Moment, England, Europe, Houses of Parliament, London, River Thames, UK, Westminster Bridge, blue hour