Want a perfect way to really see London, or just the space around you? Learn to capture it perfectly? Loose yourself for three & a half hours? I did. So I went on a (beginners) photography course.
A perfect rhythm of show & tell, then ‘go practice’. The tutor, animated and talented photographer Lucie Goodayle, simplified everything and made you feel like a rockstar. Really! She was encouraging, inspiring. Fun.
When we were set free to scatter ourselves around the Southbank it felt like embarking on a childhood adventure. You get so thoroughly absorbed in what you are doing. Like a meditation. You forget everything else. My camera gave me super powered courage to approach the motley and marvellous characters that caught my eye. Most people said yes, without question to my gentle requests of personal space invasion. I thought it was like stopping to smell the blossoming roses in the park. But with humans, not flowers.
There were the ‘ones that got away’ too. Like the girl with the full cotton skirt of imprinted sunflowers who ran past me giggling. Her arm held above her head, clutching a bobbing, bright orange balloon, the size of a giant tortoise. And the young Lithuanian transvestite who stood beside me at the Indian Street Food stand. His face dotted with fluorescent balls. The piercings where what caught my eye first. Then I noticed the whites of his eyes, weren’t! Fascinated, I struck up a conversation. I tried not to recoil as I imagined the pain, when he explained his eyeballs were tattooed black. ‘Oh my gosh’, I said. ‘They look stunning (and a bit scary, I thought to myself), especially against your ice blue eyes’. But he was so young, I worried for him. What if he changed his mind? What about when he got older and exchanged his goth boots for comfy slippers (or pink velvet mules)? He assured me, he’d never regret it. Perhaps it is me, I am too risk adverse when it comes to appearance. I’ve had the same hairstyle for years, and stood down from the stiletto long ago in favour of comfy flats (perhaps that is why I am single!?). He wouldn’t let me photograph him, unless I too was in the picture. So I bowed out. Left him as an uncaptured memory. Most people were only too happy be under the scrutiny of my lens. I came away with the reminder that people are wonderful lone islands of wonder and story. I loved the chance of getting so close.
Frui run creative holidays, courses and events. Their team appear to be bursting with knowledge, delivered with spirit. I wish I could experience all of their offerings. Now that would be a nice job!
Here are a bunch of pics I took on the day. I am now decidedly less scared of my camera’s bells and whistles!
Fun & learning. A nice combo.