24 Hours of London – June 2015 – a preview.

17th August 2015
by Lamar Francois

In June 2015 I took on , and completed the Photo24 24-hour photography challenge , based around Central London as hosted by Advanced Photographer Magazine!

For the challenge I hooked up with my old friend Martin Sylvester and we set about looking at Covent Garden , Camden Market , Chinatown , Wandsworth and a trip on the London Eye amongst a lot of other fun places which I got to see.

Of pharohs…

One of my favourite images below of a pharaoh statue near the London Eye was also able to make the final competition shortlist from over 3600 entries! It was a fun image to make – I’d thought it summed up London perfectly well – a mix of modernity , and grand classical architecture – both with aspects of creativity , and with the British weather thrown in for good effect.

It was a bit of a challenge technically as I needed the London Eye to render enough detail in the background , making for a slow shutter speed as I stopped down to f/5.6 . Also I needed to deploy a circular polariser to emphasize detail in the droplets of water by “making” the surface of the statue a bit “shinier” , further cutting down the light entering the 85mm lens by another stop.

Hieroglyphs - Photo24 , 1804hrs , 7/24

A quick snapshot of my experiences…

It was fun and challenging in equal measure – We had quite a bit of fun in Chinatown and managed to get a good study of Gerrard Street. Also incredibly liberating to get some great candid moments in Central London near Oxford Circus as 3am , with the challenge of trying to nail focus with an 85 f/1.4 in quite low light. Some incredible views atop the London Eye though I think it will be a one-off study. Wandering around an empty Camden Market at 8am on Sunday morning was fun too!

There was a lot of interesting architecture abound though the grey weather made it tricky to really concentrate on that . The sunrise at the 17th hour on the Sunday was non-existent which was quite a disappointment as we had raced through Regent Street and some interesting architecture to get down towards Victoria Embankment for it! There was also a dicey moment when I had to decamp to my base in Wandsworth to take a short break at the 11th hour as Martin had run low on battery and I’d ran out of phone battery! But thanks to the 24-hour bus network I was able to rejoin..

Coming soon I’ll be able to post the full edit , around 130 images in around 12 installments , but in the meanwhile here’s a selection to whet the appetite a bit :

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Grand gates at Gerrard Street , Soho – a major focal point of Chinatown.

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Experiments with double exposure besides Victoria Embankment , in the light of a disappointing sunrise.

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Street art – in the appropriately named Artland Street , Camden…

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Catching the nightbus – at Margaret Street , near Oxford Circus.

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Grand architecture in many shades of blue – the National Portrait Gallery near Trafalgar Square at 5am.


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A mix of grand entrances and interesting people in Holborn , Central London.


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Charing Cross Railway Station , as fed by the Golden Jubilee Bridge.



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A memorial to German soldiers serving during World War II near to Victoria Embankment!

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Contemplations and reflections in the backdrop of the London Eye!



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