View out the window, Tate Modern

Vase, Tate Modern

A makeshift window and vase with a view of St Paul’s Cathedral in the background. Taken at the Level 2 Gallery of the Tate Modern, where an artist called Haris Epaminonda was exhibiting. Would have tried to get a better frame when I took it, but it’s a bit of a sneaky shot as I’m not sure of the photo-taking policy in that particular gallery!

Cherry blossoms in London 2010

I have several friends who have been visiting Japan in recent weeks, admiring the cherry blossom season. These people live in Australia though, where such blooms are not common as the weather is too temperate.

I was in New York exactly a year ago, where they were all over Central Park and Greenwich village. Here in London you will find plenty of cherry blossoms in the parks and suburban front gardens.

These photos were taken in various locations throughout the Finchley area of North London.

cherry2

cherry3

cherry5

cherry4

cherry1

My new book: Digital Photography for the Older and Wiser

Digital Photography for the Older and Wiser
Digital Photography for the Older and Wiser

Time for a shameless plug: over the past few months I’ve been busy writing a book, Digital Photography for the Older and Wiser. As the title suggests, it’s aimed towards over 50s who’ve had no experience with digital photography. It covers everything from the basics of taking digital photos through to sharing, organising and printing them. I had a thoroughly fun experience putting the book together!

Out in mid-January 2010 and published by John Wiley and Sons, the book will make a great gift for anyone who’s just bought or received a new digital camera. And to be honest you don’t have to be old to get something out of it!

Digital photography has become such a part of modern-day culture, and hopefully the book will cut through all the technical jargon and give people confidence to embark on this thoroughly enjoyable hobby. I also explain how to use free online tools like Picasa and Windows Live Photo Gallery to make basic retouches to your photos. And let’s not forget: what makes a great photo doesn’t have anything to do with how many megapixels your camera has! So the book does include a couple of chapters dedicated to general photography tips.

Digital Photography for the Older and Wiser is available to pre-order from Amazon.co.uk for £11.69 (and on Amazon’s US site you can be alerted to when it’s available).

I’ve had great help from people who’ve contributed photographs to the book, and you may even recognise a few of mine that have graced the pages of the London Photos blog over the years!

Lack of updates!

It’s been absolutely ages since I have had a chance to take photos – but I hope to be able to do so in the coming weeks, particularly as a new project I am undertaking over the next couple of months will require quite a bit of photography! I will have more details later.

Photographers, not terrorists

An interesting update from Mike, who attended the photographer’s protest at Scotland Yard this afternoon.

Counter-terrorism legislation, which comes into force today, means if a photographer takes a photograph of a police officer, they could be arrested and possibly put in jail for potentially taking a picture that ‘is likely to be useful to a person committing or preparing an act of terrorism’.

The photo of me below, taken way back in 2001 before 9/11, was back in the ‘good old days’ when you could ham it up in front of riot police.

In protest to the Section 76 of the Counter Terrorism Act 2008, hundreds of photographers descended on to Scotland Yard and took endless photographs of the police there.

You can read more about the legislation at the British Journal of Photography’s website.

About nine months ago I mentioned the Downing St petition asking for clarification on photographer’s rights. The response was that:

There are no legal restrictions on photography in public places. However, the law applies to photographers as it does to anybody else in a public place. So there may be situations in which the taking of photographs may cause or lead to public order situations, inflame an already tense situation, or raise security considerations..

Each situation will be different and it would be an operational matter for the police officer concerned as to what action if any should be taken in respect of those taking photographs. Anybody with a concern about a specific incident should raise the matter with the Chief Constable of the relevant force.