Is it a train? Is it a boat? Is it a London Underground carriage?

Is it a train? Is it a boat? Is it a London Underground carriage?

Actually it is two out of the three. This is the Island Line train that serves the west side of the Isle of Wight, from Ryde to Shanklin. The c1938 carriages were originally used on the London Underground Northern Line. This photo was not taken out at sea, however. The train runs to the end of Ryde Pier (to link up with the ferry to Portsmouth – a great bit of joined-up public transport) so you are surrounded by water when riding on it.

It is a joyous and surreal experience to have sun flooding in on an old familiar Underground ride while looking out at blue water instead of dark tunnels. More photos of towns and such are here.

In another bit of news, in case you were wondering how I got on with my photo that was shortlisted in the Event Photography Awards, I am very pleased to say that I came in second out of a shortlist of 12 in my category.

A rainy Southend Pier, Essex

A rainy Southend Pier, Essex

I give you a moody shot for this week’s photo. It was taken while travelling the length of the longest pleasure pier in the world, which happens to be in Southend, Essex. This elevated platform extends 1.34 miles out into the middle of the Thames River Estuary. It is so long that, as an alternative to walking to the end of the pier,

you can also take a dedicated railway line, where this photo was taken. In fact, we were forced to take the train because the walkway was closed due to the adverse weather conditions that you can see outside the window. Unfortunately, we missed the train back and had to (illegally) run the length of the pier in the rain. You can find more townscape photos here, and more of my travel photographs here.

The ferry on film

The ferry on film

I was asked to shoot some 35mm black and white film recently. It was a real treat using my trusty old camera and nowadays, you can get a roll developed and scanned and the files sent directly to a drop box or email account. I had forgotten that satisfying clunk of the shutter release and the anticipation of having to wait to see how the images

turn out. I shot the roll on a ferry crossing from Newhaven to Dieppe, a four hour trip that seems interminable until it is suddenly all over. Watching how people spend this time is interesting: out on the decks being blasted by the wind; cocooned inside the lounge; availing themselves of the cafeteria. Public spaces but inhabited in a private way, just getting through time.

BREAKING NEWS: I am very pleased to announce that my photograph of the Stephen Lawrence Trust Centre came second place in its category at the Event Photography Awards 2019. You can read more about it here.

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