Man outside Portrait Gallery playing the bagpipes. Photo by Sarah Rajabalee

Trip into Central London

Last week’s positive response made me pick up my camera and shoot. I’d forgotten how it felt just wandering around with just my camera. I had given myself the assignment of ‘London’ – a wide scope and something easy. I wandered from the West End down to the Portrait Gallery (where I stopped in and had a look at the Taylor Wessing Photographic Prize. Well worth my £3 entry fee) and onto Trafalgar Square.

By the time I had left the Portrait Gallery, it has stopped raining. Photographing after it rained meant I could include the reflections which, for me, makes it more interesting.

Photos taken with the Lumix GX7. 14-42mm lens.

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Blue-eyed boy posing in a boat with a pirate hat

Aye, a pirate I am

I spied this cheeky chappy while mooching around the 17th century net huts over in Hastings. He was walking across from the beach with his mother, and I loved the fact that he had a pirate hat on. Hastings is a bit obsessed with pirates so I popped him on the wooden boat that was nearby.

He was very shy at first, but with some encouragement from his mum and myself, he started to relax. I’ve realised that when photographing people, I need to keep talking to them and sometimes to lower the camera from my face to have a conversation. This helps with relaxing them to have fun in front of the camera. I’m not one for staged, staid photography (a la Victorian times) and just go with it. I suppose it’s because I like documenting things as they happen or as I see it, although I do give direction if and when is necessary. All I did here was keep chatting to the little lad and he did the rest.