This Photographer Captured Amazing Aerial Shots Of London From A Helicopter

Will Noble
By Will Noble Last edited 31 months ago
This Photographer Captured Amazing Aerial Shots Of London From A Helicopter
The crossing at Oxford Circus and Regent Street. © Bernhard Lang

The most surprising thing revealed to Bernhard Lang, when he was photographing London from above, was just how clean it looked.

"I was photographing over Munich a few weeks before — a city that has the reputation to be especially neat and tidy. But I have to say that London — at least the main attraction areas of London — made a better and tidier impression on me."

Paternoster Square, next to St Paul's Cathedral. © Bernhard Lang

Born in the South of Germany in 1970, Lang has spent almost a decade now photographing his 'Aerial Views' series: a project that's had him sticking his camera out of the side of helicopters the world over — from the domes and ruins of Rome and the tulip fields of the Netherlands, to the shanty towns of Manila, and mines in Botswana, Angola and Niger.

Horse Guards Parade looks like a desert from above, says Lang. © Bernhard Lang

Lang is particularly interested in images that capture the impact of human activity on nature and the environment. London certainly hasn't done this by halves. "I personally like the images of Piccadilly and Oxford Circus with London's typical double-decker buses and taxis, and the many people walking around," Lang tells us.

Few people have seen the London Eye from quite this perspective. © Bernhard Lang

"I also was also lucky with the photo of Paternoster Square, because in the moment when we flew over it the sunlight was shinning just on the top of the column and the lower part was already in the shade — so we had this special light situation."

Piccadilly Circus. © Bernhard Lang

A manmade city will occasionally ape nature in unexpected ways. One surprising moment came when Lang swooped over Horse Guards Parade: "It looked a bit like people walking through a desert in the middle of a megacity," he says.

Boats and pedalos on the Serpentine. © Bernhard Lang

Does Lang think architects usually consider the impact of their designs from above, as from street level? "Yes, I think the entire design of a building is important and must be considered by the architects and urban planners, in particular for the cityscape of a major cosmopolitan city like London," he says.

St Paul's still stands out in the crowd. © Bernhard Lang

See more of Lang's photography on Instagram, and his website, where fine art prints are also available to buy.

Last Updated 05 November 2019