From contemporary design stores to graffiti down back alleys, a photo walk through East London has everything we expect at ground level but we were surprised by what we found perched above the rooftops. We were given a point and shoot camera for the afternoon and taken on a tour with a professional photographer from Canon at our side. So what did we learn about photographing our fair city? Mostly that no matter what camera we have in our hands or what light is available, there is something of interest around every corner to photograph.
Our tour started at the members lounge at the East Room where we were invited to clamber up the stairwell to their rooftop alpine ski lodge. Not a mountain in sight but a wooden chalet, snow covered pine trees and a cosy fire and you are easily convinced that you've just had a hard day on the slopes and you need a drink. To get you further in the mood there is a dressing up box of all things wooly to really get you into the mountain spirit.
Back down at ground level, we popped into a contemporary design store where abstract art made of ordinary items such as pencils, books or safety pins made wonderful objects to photograph and equally but in complete contrast this was followed by a trip to an antique centre housed in a former church. Westland London deals in antiques from around Europe and specialises in fireplace mantels, ones that you could set up home inside, they were that large. We were like a kid in a candy store and didn't know where to point our camera first with the amount of amazing detail on the items inside Westlands.
To conclude our tour, we clambered back up stairwells of yet another building but no apline ski lodge this time but four tube carriages converted to offices. If only we could work here for a day. Trying not to disturb the people who actually worked there, we snapped the outside and a few sneaky shots of the inside as the light disappeared for the day.
So what photography tips can we pass on? For starters, don't be afraid to shoot in low light without a flash. Just find a sturdy surface, even if it is a garbage skip on the street and balance the camera. Use the timer delay function to eliminate shake from pressing the shutter. Also, take the time to experiment. You never know what hidden functions your camera might have. Judging from our talented photographers in our flickrpool, this is nothing new. Most importantly, don't forget to look up, you never know what you might find to photograph.