Friday, December 31, 2010
Thursday, December 30, 2010
A view of Southwark from the Millenium Bridge on a partly cloudy day. Notice the building under construction in the left part of the frame. Someday, this is going to be the Shard London Bridge and will apparently be the tallest building in the European Union when it is completed in 2012. Some interesting artist's renderings right over here. Thoughts? Kind of looks horribly out of place to me, but I guess this is the future of London. Developers like these enormous skyscrapers a lot more than the old three-story 19th-century warehouses.
Wednesday, December 29, 2010
Tuesday, December 28, 2010
St. Paul's as seen from the north side of the Millenium Bridge. It was raining that night so my lens got a few splashes on it, hence the light spot in the upper right corner. Let's just pretend that was intentional and that it adds a sense of whimsy to the shot.
Monday, December 27, 2010
Sunday, December 26, 2010
Saturday, December 25, 2010
Friday, December 24, 2010
Thursday, December 23, 2010
I did eventually make it down to Trafalgar Square to watch some of the carolers. Norway donated that enormous pine, as it does every year, in recognition of British help during the Second World War. Students set it on fire during some of the protests we've been having over the last few weeks which angered a lot of people. The tree seems to be doing alright, though.
Wednesday, December 22, 2010
Tuesday, December 21, 2010
I have not had any desire to shop on Oxford Street in the three months I've been here. And it's mostly because of this scene which I have witnessed on a number of a occasions from the safety of the top deck of a city bus. Especially around this time of year, the swarms of rabid shoppers are terrifying. I have seen people practically herded down the stairs into the tube station, packed together like sardines, not able to move an inch. How unpleasant!
Monday, December 20, 2010
Amazing what a little snow will do. Changes the color palette of the entire city. The whole world becomes whites and browns and occasionally reds (those telltale phone and post boxes). We got at least 3-4 inches sticking and the city looks like A Christmas Carol.
But, oh my goodness, they don't know how to deal with it! Heathrow and Gatwick closed for a day and are now experiencing heavy delays and cancellations. Everyone has been thrown into a panic. And we Midwesterners just laugh and laugh and laugh.
Sunday, December 19, 2010
Chilies after a sudden, unexpected burst of snow. We've been having some tremendously Christmas-y weather here in London over the last couple of days. Has put me in an equally tremendously good mood. Though it has been a bit...ya know...chilly (har har).
Saturday, December 18, 2010
May not be the classic shot from Millenium Bridge, but I am so proud of this photo anyway. Had to balance it on a wall and use the timer, all the while cursing because I don't have a tripod. But I think it turned out brilliantly anyway. It was a cloudy, rainy night and you can really see in this shot why the stars are never visible in London -- far too much light pollution.
Friday, December 17, 2010
I think I'm going to start a pub signs series. This is a sign on a building near where I live but there isn't a pub there anymore. It's been converted into some rather odd-looking flats. I can't quite imagine living in an old pub, chopped up into separate rooms.
Thursday, December 16, 2010
Jumped at the chance to take a free tour of Parliament the other week. Saw the House of Commons and literally stood feet away from where Tony Blair used to stand when he repeatedly and consistently kicked the opposition's ass every Prime Minister's Question Time in the late 90s. Not gonna lie, it was pretty amazing. Snapped this shot on the way out.
Wednesday, December 15, 2010
At the Albert Memorial, statues at each of the four corners depict different regions of the world. This is the one for the Americas, which basically means North America, as far I can tell. Here we see an oddly Grecian-looking American Indian "chief" who appears to be riding a buffalo (pretty sure that never happened). There's also a Daniel Boone type frontiersman round the other side.
Tuesday, December 14, 2010
The majestic coach of the Lord Mayor of London. It's about 250 years old and is usually housed in the Museum of London--except during the recent Lord Mayor's Show that takes place every November. Sadly, I missed it due to a trip to Spain during that week.
Monday, December 13, 2010
The burnt shell of a bombed out car from Iraq on display at the Imperial War Museum London. A bit of a strange experience, to say the least, seeing something like this presented as an art installation.
Sunday, December 12, 2010
Saturday, December 11, 2010
The other night, two of my English friends took me on a walk along the South Bank on our way to their flat in the East End. They probably hadn't bargained that this meant I would have to stop every fifteen feet to take a picture of Tower Bridge from a slightly different angle. I hadn't seen it yet on this trip, and I think my persistence paid off with a fairly classic but nonetheless aesthetically pleasing shot.
Friday, December 10, 2010
I tried to take the bus to Trafalgar Square this evening to see some of the carolers that are singing there every night under the big Norwegian pine. But my usual bus was unexpectedly re-routed and I found myself suddenly on the wrong side of the Thames. So I got out to see what was up and came upon a group of student protesters at the Houses of Parliament. The MPs were in the middle of voting to increase tuition for UK universities (after many of them had promised not to) and the protesters were in the street waiting to hear the results of the vote.
Snapped this shot of police vans lined up to block the street next to Big Ben. And below is a fairly poor shot of the students with the Eye in the background.
I used to be something of a protester in my youth (I say youth...my high school years, I guess), but I was quickly disillusioned and now tend to stay away from mass rallies and demonstrations. As I was shooting pictures of the students, they were in the middle of voting on what song they wanted to hear next on the loud speaker. Didn't exactly change my mind regarding the effectiveness of protests.
But then I saw this hideous report on the BBC. And, voilà, they have my sympathies again. I'm as changeable as the wind.
Thursday, December 9, 2010
Wednesday, December 8, 2010
Tuesday, December 7, 2010
Monday, December 6, 2010
Sunday, December 5, 2010
Saturday, December 4, 2010
How can you dislike something that makes even my relatively ho-hum north London neighborhood look like whispered poetry?
Friday, December 3, 2010
Thursday, December 2, 2010
English breakfast. I'm missing the sausage, bacon, baked beans, and black pudding, but it turned out so nicely and I was so proud of it, that I simply had to share. See how easy it can be to eat well in England?
Wednesday, December 1, 2010
Click here to view thumbnails for all participants
Tuesday, November 30, 2010
London Transport Museum. Note the awful tube map on the wall to the left. Seriously -- the current London tube map is an absolute work of genius. Makes a potentially horrifying and confusing system completely fathomable and even easy. (That said, I still prefer the bus.)
Monday, November 29, 2010
Sunday, November 28, 2010
Saturday, November 27, 2010
Friday, November 26, 2010
The ovens in our student housing aren't really big enough to do a proper roast turkey, so instead we ordered turkey and cranberry and sage and stuffing pies from Borough Market. And I found canned cranberry sauce at the local supermarket (where I bumped into several other Americans looking for the same thing). I found this hybrid of a traditional American dinner oddly comforting. And, thanks to the wonders of modern technology, I was also able to speak to my entire family back home via webcam.
And now I'll be eating leftover Minnesota wild rice for the next two months. Happy Thanksgiving, all!
Thursday, November 25, 2010
Today, I am thankful that I come from a family and a financial background that has allowed me to get the kind of high-class education that I have enjoyed in the United States and now in the United Kingdom. Tertiary education used to be free for all UK citizens just a few years ago and now the new coalition government is threatening to lift the cap on tuition so that fees could rise, conceivably to an unlimited amount (£9000 a year is the current talk).
Protests have rocked the capital (and the country) as a result of these developments. Yesterday students occupied many universities, including my own, University College London. This is a shot of some of those students gathering prior to sitting in at the UCL Finances office.
Wednesday, November 24, 2010
this image a few weeks back of the East End as seen from a flat in North London. This is that same view on a foggy day not long ago. Needless to say, I drank a lot of tea and listened to some excellent moody music on that day.
Tuesday, November 23, 2010
Battersea Power Station, and it's in about the right place, though it looks like it's missing the back two smokestacks.
Monday, November 22, 2010
Sunday, November 21, 2010
Saturday, November 20, 2010
Friday, November 19, 2010
Thursday, November 18, 2010
Wednesday, November 17, 2010
Smithfield site for over 800 years and it's still going strong. Snapped this shot just outside the market after a hearty full English breakfast from nearby Smith's of Smithfield restaurant (I'm betting those sausages were mega fresh...).