"Perhaps architects design for the birds in the sky?"
So says photographer Paul Campbell, whose exquisite shots of London from the air fill new book Bird's Eye London.
He has a point. Seen from above, some of the capital's landmarks look even more impressive than from the ground. Take the British Museum, for example.
Norman Foster's Great Court roof looks like a huge mattress or trampoline, designed for those who dwell in the air. Even London's most famous statue seems to favour the pigeons and gulls over his fellow humans.
The photographs in Campbell's book were all taken from the back of a helicopter over a period of five years. They include shots of many long-established London landmarks, but also some of the newer architecture. Even the most ardent critics of shopping centres must admit that Westfield Shepherd's Bush looks intriguing from the air:
While Dame Zaha Hadid's Aquatic Centre in the Olympic Park is staggering from any angle, especially this:
London also has many natural beauties or, at least, natural managed beauties, as this shots of Battersea Park demonstrates.
Campbell isn't the first to present arresting images of London from the air. We've chronicled the helicopter shots of Jason Hawkes on these pages on more than one occasion. But there's certainly room in the skies for more than one eagle-eyed photographer with a passion for architecture, and these images are among the best we've seen of London — from any vantage point.
Bird's Eye London by Paul Campbell is out now from Graffeg. Buy direct, bookshop.org, Amazon. All images Paul Campbell Photographer.