London Architecture 16 FEB 2014

My buddy Roy and I went out again for a drive around London looking for some interesting architecture to shoot. He drove (thank god – otherwise we never would’ve got anywhere) to the O2 arena where we shot some different buildings in the morning light. Then we went on the UAE Airlines gondola across the Thames, where we enjoyed the cafeteria at the The Crystal and shot some more photos. After going back across the Thames, Roy found his way to the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park (I was hopelessly lost at this point) where we shot some more after stopping at a handful of interesting buildings. Looking for a bite to eat and a cuppa, we found a cafe that felt like it was lifted right out of Seattle. I wouldn’t say it made me feel homesick, but instead it was an excitingly familiar tone and feel. The Muff Cafe is a wee bastion of westcoast style urban hipsterism, digging deep into the classic cafe racer aesthetic. The food and tea weren’t too shabby, either. An absolute must visit destination for any Seattlites who find themselves in London.

I also had my G15 with me, and I was constantly snapping pics while we were driving around. These aren’t those photos; this gallery is the best of the architectural photos I shot. I actually didn’t go into Nik Silver Efex for the monochrome conversions; I played around with Photoshop’s B&W adjustment layer, combined with some Softlight, Multiply and Screen layers of different masks. The advantage of doing this is that I had a lot more control over the conversion – especially how I decided to drive the contrast, but at the expense of introducing some noise. I wouldn’t say Nik is any better or worse than “rolling your own” conversion. The two techniques both have advantages and disadvantages.

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