Nearly a year ago to the day was the first time I had spent time in the city of London. It had always been in the back of my mind, and oddly enough, somewhere I’ve flown through many times but never stepped foot outside the airport. London has always represented more of a midpoint than a destination. A layover on your way to South Africa or a required connection to the South of France. There’s always been a certain curiosity about the city, but similar to a US destination like Hawaii, I always felt compelled to travel just a bit further outside of my comfort zone.
We met up with local street photographer, Joshua Jackson, who took us on an all day photo walk and showed us some of his favorite spots in the city. It was refreshing to get a local perspective on a city that has endless tourist traps and felt like we learned more in that time with Joshua than we did throughout the rest of the trip. It was great to spend a day with a photographer and talk gear, film, and technique. His approach to color and street photography are incredibly inspiring and I learned a lot just by observing how he approached a scene to make a photograph. We finished our photo walk with a few drinks at a local pub and discussed favorite film cameras before parting ways.
As for the city itself, there were areas like Shoreditch, Chinatown, Soho, and Notting Hill that provided more inspiration and character than some of the more romanced parts of London. We stayed in Shoreditch during our trip and it was the closest to a creative community that I found in the city. Throughout the rest of London, there were ongoing themes of identity and of old and new. The historical London contrasted with skyscrapers and new construction weaved throughout them. Finding the creative pockets throughout this maze was well worth the effort and left me with a great appreciation and almost a sense of regret for not visiting earlier.
All photographs were created with the Fujifilm X100F and the Hasselblad 500CM with Carl Zeiss Planar T* 2.8/80 on Kodak Portra 400.