December last year Ian Robinson Photography received a call from a client, requesting if I could travel down to London to take some imagery of their lighting installations at Selfridges. I had to take the images after dark, to capture the desired effect, so we realised that it was going to be very busy with pedestrians, shopping for their festive gifts.
City Centre London
I arrived at dusk. I always like to take a good look around to assess the task in hand. My brief was to take pictures of the window displays, of which my client had installed the lighting for.
As you can imagine, it was very busy indeed, a hubbub of activity. Clusters of people intertwined, looking for the quickest passage to their destination… My instinct told me that this wasn’t going to be easy… I had managed to park. Now for the short walk to Selfridges.
As I approached, I was taken aback at the magnificence of the displays before me… Teasing me to be closer, to discover the splendour of the content on display to tempt. These displays were indeed special. I had never seen such opulent grandeur in a window display before… I was indeed, struck. To me, they were out of this world!
I wasn’t aware of the time, only of the displays to which were to be photographed. I had to be sure of capturing these, first time, correct angle, there were no margins for error.
Time to shoot!
I set about the task in hand, camera on tripod, bag over shoulder. To attain the correct perspective, I had to shoot many displays from a distance. As you can imagine, I was somewhat of an inconvenience to the focussed, preoccupied crowds. I needed space, which to me was as precious a commodity as the content of the bulging bags hanging from the fists and wrists of the jostling crowds scuttling around me.
I couldn’t afford to be weak, I had to assert myself, I had no option. I set my tripod into position, framed the image, then focussed, people not taking a blind bit of notice as to what I was doing. Walking in front of me, stepping over the legs of my tripod.. So, with cable release and arm extending, I walked forward, held my arm out and to my delight, people stopped! “Quick” I thought to myself, click, “yes I’ve got it!”