Newcastle Photographer and Content Creator, Mandy Charlton, Always on a quest for adventure, often seen on buses, trains and planes. On a quest to be happier and healthier. Lives in Newcastle with her 3 cats, Iris, Maggie and Arthur. Loves good vibes, musicals and cakes. Full time professional wedding photographer in the north east of england alongside content creator on Tiktok, Instagram and Facebook

Friday, August 28, 2015

London from above, part 2, as viewed from The Shard.

Ever since I first saw images from The Shard in London I've wanted to visit, I mean I've really wanted to visit, a bit like an expectant child on Christmas Eve, it's something of a photographers dream being so high above the city and although the entry fee is high (£30.95 for just me) I would have to say that it is worth every penny.

 Now I should add to that statement, I think if you're a family with little ones then maybe they're not going to get the most out of the experience but if you are at all interested in cities, London, viewing great landscapes, taking great photographs well then this might just be the experience you've been waiting for.

 I chose to go at sunset because for me that's when the magic happens, the fading natural light of the day adds to the quiet beauty of the city down below.  You stand watching amazed as the city starts to light up artificially with something akin to the biggest set of illuminations you've ever seen, this is something so incredible that you can't possibly imagine it until you see it, I've viewed a lot of cities from above both during daylight but this one was the first I'd managed to view at night, mostly because London is just open later for business, especially during the months of chaotic tourism in summer.

 I'm so glad I went in late though as it wasn't busy or crowded and there was an easy pace of gentle calm as the remaining guests, lets call them guests because that's what you feel like, you feel like London itself has invited you to view it's iconic structures, it's crowded urban landscapes from such a height that the whole city looks like an enormous ever changing piece of art.

There are two heights on which to view these epic landscapes from, the 68th and the 72nd floor both offer amazing vantage points, I wandered around for just over an hour collecting more and more images that I can keep, to enjoy forever.  

On the 72nd floor you can grab a deckchair, you can buy a cup of tea from a little Fortnum and Mason cart or a glass of champagne to sit enjoying the views with that special person, for me though, a champagne glass would have inhibited my ability to hold the camera so I was happy just to wander around the 360 degree panoramic windows drinking in the sights whilst all around felt eerily calm, I don't think there are many places in London where you get such contrasts of calm and quiet whilst knowing that down below the hustle, bustle and chaos of the city continue long into the night.

When I return to London again in the autumn I will return to The View From The Shard again, there's no question that the seasons change the light just as the hours of the passing day does and I'm fairly sure I could never get bored of towering above the beauty of the urban landscape and photographing it slowly and carefully with love.  For me, this is what travel and photography are all about, whilst you can press record in your mind and whilst you can accurately describe a place or view to take people to the same places in their mind if you can put together those images with gloriously worded descriptions then you can truly take people on a journey with you time and time again.


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