Friday, August 31, 2007

A Desire Named Streetcar

Shot with Olympus E500
London is not a friendly city for cars. All sorts of Londoners choose not to own a car. But sometimes, you just need to drive. Here is the perfect solution. Since I first heard about it, I've been wondering how I was going to be able to feature a picture of the Streetcar idea, and then this chap pedalled into my field of view. What it is, is self-service car hire for periods as short as 30 minutes or as long as six months. Sheer genius. They do vans as well.

posted by Ham at 00:02 -- Comments here: 5

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Shopping as art

Shot with Olympus E500
Unless you are very inquisitive, you won't find these two ladies adoring the commercial imperative. They are part of what little is left from the glory that once was Whiteley's in Queensway. A classic rags to riches story that is so much part of the possibility that is London - read about it here. These days, it's just another shopping mall. Here's a few of their "Interesting Facts",
  • Whiteleys was originally the first and biggest department store in the country. It pioneered mail-order and included a theatre and a golf-course on the roof.

  • Eliza Dolittle is sent "to Whiteleys to be attired" in Pygmalion (My Fair Lady).

  • Adolf Hitler ordered the Luftwaffe not to bomb Whiteleys as he wanted it as his headquarters once he'd invaded Britain.

  • William Whiteley was alleged to have burned the original building down to claim the insurance money. He was later assassinated in his office by a man claiming to be his illegitimate son demanding his inheritance.

See where on London Daily Photo Map

posted by Ham at 00:08 -- Comments here: 6

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

You see strange things on the London Tube

Shot with Olympus E500
It's my party, or at least, it's my baloon. The tube is a fascinating place to be as thousands of people step on, meet for the possibly the only time in their lives and step off again. I rarely use the tube, preferring to commute by bike, but iot is part of London's soul. The best place to catch the spirit of the tube is Annie Mole's blog, Going Underground

posted by Ham at 00:31 -- Comments here: 2

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

The Thin Blue Line....

Shot with Olympus E500
...of earplugs..... Hear no evil?

All the police at Notting Hill Gate Carnival had been issued with these blue earplugs. This officer had a great attitude and sense of fun, so I hope he doesn't mind this picture. You may need to look more closely, or at the larger image, to understand what I'm talking about or maybe it's just me that found it mildly amusing. Did I mention the music was VERY loud?

posted by Ham at 00:02 -- Comments here: 2

Monday, August 27, 2007

Notting Hill Gate Carnival

Shot with Olympus E500
August Bank Holiday in London means Notting Hill Gate Carnival, the largest street party in Europe. Two days of costumes, dancing, jerk chicken and goat curry, and louder music than you would think possible. OK, OK, I must be getting old.

Two more photos here and here

posted by Ham at 00:15 -- Comments here: 4

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Take Pride in London

Shot with Olympus E500
I enjoyed taking this photo. Not much more to say.

posted by Ham at 00:04 -- Comments here: 4

Saturday, August 25, 2007

The Towers of London

Shot with Olympus E500
I apologise for the ordinary quality of this photo, but when I turned around at the farm and saw these towers: 18th (church), 19th (brewery chimney), 20th (Nat West Tower from 1970's) and the 21st (the Gherkin), I knew I had to show you all. This is London.

posted by Ham at 00:02 -- Comments here: 2

Friday, August 24, 2007

Feeling Sheepish

Shot with Olympus E500
This grafitti'd sheep marks the entrance to Spitalfields City Farm. Coincidently, it was exactly a year ago that I told about it, probably the closest farm to any city centre. It's about time I showed you it. The amalgam image - sculpture - animal - grafitti - seems so appropriate, somehow.

See where on London Daily Photo Map

posted by Ham at 00:52 -- Comments here: 7

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Ordinary Londoners - No 7 in a series

Shot with Olympus E500
Part of the excitement of living in London is who you will meet next. Through the pages of this blog, I'd like you all to meet Mark Wydler, artist, musician, carpenter and all round good guy. I came across him as he was building a timber superstructure to a car at the Treatment Rooms (see last week). Asked what he liked about London, he told me that it's because in London you can be and do anything you want. How true.

Check out his art here, Myspace here.

The Ordinary Londoners Series: No 1, No 2, No 3, No 4 No 5 No 6.

posted by Ham at 00:02 -- Comments here: 2

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

I don't mind if I do!

Shot with Olympus E500
If you're looking for somewhere to eat in London, somewhere a little different, you might want to try the Mongolian Barbecue. Theory is, you choose your raw ingredients and pass them to the chef for cooking. Reasonably priced, if you pass by at the right time, you can get a free taster served to you by a cheerful and friendly waitress, as seen here. Rather nice it was, too.

See where on London Daily Photo Map

posted by Ham at 00:05 -- Comments here: 3

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

The Big Giving

Shot with Olympus E500
The Big Giving is a really fun installation on the Southbank, created by Klaus Weber, just south of the Hungerford footbridge. The men and women appear out of blocks of clinker, and they are all ? .... exuding .... Spewing from their mouths, dripping from their noses, you name it. "The Big Giving" refers to the Native North American "Potlach" ceremony of competitive giving, where the host's status increses the more he gives.

See two more characters here and here

See where on London Daily Photo Map

posted by Ham at 01:24 -- Comments here: 8

Monday, August 20, 2007

The Poster Painters of Mumbai

Shot with Olympus E500
Extreme poster painting. The programme billed the "Poster Painters of Mumbai", I just wasn't expecting it to be so entertaining. You can see the whole of the Trafalgar Square poster here. Seems that it is quite the norm for posters to be painted, still. Where's Rolf Harris when you need him?

posted by Ham at 00:34 -- Comments here: 5

Sunday, August 19, 2007

London's Elephants - No. 18 in a series

Shot with Olympus E500
The Trafalgar Square festival this year sets out to express London’s creative connections with India, with a range of dance, music and performance. Today, they were painting a poster and these elephants appeared.

Last day Sunday, if you want to get down there. Lots of photos here or here.

Click for No 1 in the series.
Click for No 2 in the series.
Click for No 3 in the series.
Click for No 4 in the series.
Click for No 5 in the series.
Click for No 6 in the series.
Click for No 7 in the series.
Click for No 7 1/2 in the series.
Click for No 8 in the series.
Click for No 9 in the series.
Click for No 10 in the series.
Click for No 11 in the series.
Click for No 11 1/2 in the series.
Click for No 12 in the series.
Click for No 13 in the series.
Click for No 14 in the series.
Click for No 15 in the series.
Click for No 16 in the series.
Click for No 17 in the series.
Click for No 17 1/2 in the series.

posted by Ham at 00:02 -- Comments here: 5

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Postman's Park

Shot with Olympus E500
The tiny hidden oasis that is Postman's Park was featured here some months back, for its tableau of monuments to Victorian heros. As The Way We See It location this week, so I thought it would be good to show you another aspect.

It's another of London's hidden parks, and well worth a detour if you are in the area.

See where on London Daily Photo Map

posted by Ham at 01:00 -- Comments here: 3

Friday, August 17, 2007

Rinkoff's Bakery

Shot with Olympus E500
Let me show you one of London's hidden secrets, Rinkoff's Bakery. It's very unlikely that you would find this by accident, and if you did there's nothing on the outside to let you know that you've found some of the best sour dough bread & bagels in London.

Established in 1911, Rinkoff's is the last Jewish baker in the East End, as I found out researching. It features in a couple of walks I found. My recommendation? The onion platzel (a crusty white roll with onion).

See where on London Daily Photo Map

posted by Ham at 00:35 -- Comments here: 5

Thursday, August 16, 2007

What's the time, Mr Ben?

Shot with Olympus E500
Time to confuse the tourists! (Did you used to play "What's the time, Mr Wolf" as a child?)

Big Ben has fallen silent, the clock is stopped for a month for maintenance. It would have been good to get a picture of the abseillers, but it wasn't to be. Call me an old cynic if you like, but I don't suppose the Houses of Parliament are going to be totally bong-less for the duration.

posted by Ham at 00:02 -- Comments here: 5

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Get ready to party

Shot with Olympus E500
I was in Brick Lane on Sunday when I saw these guys setting out their stall. No, it's not a party for porrige oat eaters, its a costumed boat party on the Thames next Saturday, the 18th. You choose an animal that you want to be from the list on their site. The Arthur Dent lookalike is meant to be Noah.

posted by Ham at 00:02 -- Comments here: 9

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

The Treatment Room (Part II)

Shot with Olympus E500
Following from yesterday, this picture is from when Baroness Von Reichardt invited me in to see the crowded glory that is their home, and this a small piece caught my eye. (not that the award winning pig bra didn't catch my eye).

So what is it that I liked so much? Well for starters most of the big name modern artists these days can best be described as up their own fundamental orifices: "Look at me, haven't I copulated a lot?" or "Look at me, here are my bodily fluids" or just "Look at me, I've found something different to call art". This art, here, reaches out - the more you look at it the more it pays you back. Words, images, icons are jumbled up in threads that imterweave. It might look different, but this is 15th Century Italy.

The images echo Lichtenstein and Warhol, Cornell and cartoons, and so much more, And always, always a dark undercurrent. If you like your art all pretty pictures, chances are you won't like this much. If you like chilli flavoured chocolate, you well might.

posted by Ham at 00:29 -- Comments here: 14

Monday, August 13, 2007

The Treatment Rooms

Shot with Olympus E500
A few days back, I caught an article in Londonist about the Treatment Rooms, and thought it was worth checking out.

I was right. It's more than just art, it's is an exuberance for life that just can't won't be held down. The Baroness Von Reichardt is responsible for the mosaics, and the graphic design is done by Mr Spunky. The house is just covered in mosaic.

I'm going to talk about the art a bit more tomorrow. In the meantime, if you read the Londonist article you can see the whole of the Luiz Ramirez mosaic and another piece of detail here.

posted by Ham at 00:26 -- Comments here: 9

Sunday, August 12, 2007

There's a clue here somewhere....

Thanks all, for the good wishes. I was advised not to have candles because of the health and safety risk. Instead, this seemed to be a good option. Definitely my kind of birthday celebration.

posted by Ham at 00:13 -- Comments here: 13

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Where am I now?

Shot with Olympus E500
Competition time. This photo was taken in a place that most Londoners will pass at sometime or the other. Anyone could see this perspective but I suspect that few have added the necessary few steps to their journey. Any ideas, people? A London Daily Photo winner's postcard to the first to get it right. I'm feeling smug and confident about this one. I rather like the way it is reminiscent of a camera iris.

posted by Ham at 00:02 -- Comments here: 18

Friday, August 10, 2007

Layers of Street Art

Shot with Olympus E500
When I came across this, the first thing to catch my eye was the "Faile Collective" picture, followed by the straight graffiti that had me reaching for the Internet to find out what it meant. Then I looked and saw the red heart, almost like a critical evaluation of the scene, and then the tag. But then I looked at the paint itself, and saw the way it is peeling: the depth of layers, colours and the overall effect. You could write a thesis on this wall on its own.

See where on London Dailyo Photo Map

posted by Ham at 00:02 -- Comments here: 6

Thursday, August 09, 2007

The Gherkin

Shot with Olympus E500
While I was standing there, I had to turn around and shoot the Gherkin, didn't I?

As I've said before, the Gherkin is one of my favourite London buildings, especially because of the way it changes according to where you are. Here are my previous photos of it: 1, 2, 3, 4

posted by Ham at 00:27 -- Comments here: 5

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

The Future in the Making

Shot with Olympus E500
You won't often see a building being demolished like this, from the ground up (three more times in London, max). This is the P&O building, making way for the Cheese Grater in Leadenhall Street, next to the Gherkin. Gherkins and cheese, what will they think of next.

Because of the way the building was constructed, it is being demolished from the ground to the top, then the core will be demolished from the top to the botton. Go and have a look while you can. Here's some appropriate backing music.

See where on London Daily Photo Map

posted by Ham at 00:21 -- Comments here: 11

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

How green is your car?

Shot with Olympus E500
As green as this? I doubt it.

Still at the London Village Fete, Innocent, the sponsors of the fete wanted to demonstrate their green credentials and who can blame them. Their photos here

posted by Ham at 00:40 -- Comments here: 7

Monday, August 06, 2007

Helter Skelter iin a Summer Swelter

Shot with Olympus E500
This image, also from the London Village Fete, seemed so apt fot thie weather we've been having.

I came away from there with one or two other images that I'll share with you over the next few days.

posted by Ham at 00:05 -- Comments here: 6

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Name: Ham Location: London, United Kingdom View my complete profile

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