November 19th, 2009 | By Kal
Before I start, I think I need to mention this straight away, because it made such a difference. You may have seen my blog yesterday about being really bad at having my photo taken. You may have thought ‘what’s he talking about, he just has to stand there’, but seriously it’s not a natural thing for me. Enough of the moaning, I know, but here’s where Marcus Maschwitz comes in. Marcus took the photos last night and his friend Warren came along to help. Whilst obviously being great at what he does – the guy’s flying out to South Africa next week to work with the Killers – Marcus was also able to keep the atmosphere fun and actually took an interest in us, Rob and Kal.
Without further ado then, it all began at around 7pm outside Cutty Sark station, in what is called Maritime Greenwich. We met Marcus and Warren and after a quick look at Claire’s map we were off in search of a location. Thanks have to go to Claire who lives near Greenwich and produced a great map of potential locations for the shoot. It really helped us get around so thank you.
Before long we spotted a Georgian-looking set of buildings, with the only problem being they were surrounded by fairly high Georgian-looking railings. We found a large metal gate that was slightly ajar and walked past an office manned by a security guard. In hindsight, the place was a college of music, so it might have been the musical instruments that got us in, but at the time we were sure it was down to James Bond-esque espionage.
After getting our first set of shots out of the way in the grounds of the college, our next location was to be the Greenwich foot tunnels. As navigator I took a lot of the flak, but I still maintain that the scale of Claire’s otherwise impeccable map was off. But accidentally on purpose, as we reached a sign saying “Foot Tunnels 1/2 mile” pointing in the direction we had just came from, we spotted what was my favourite location of the night.
The Thames is not known for its beaches – you’d probably struggle to find holiday makers sunning themselves at the best of times. So at around half 8 on a windy November night, we were on our own.
The waterfront was down a dubiously slippery staircase and a short stumble across a concretey-woody sludge. As we shot, we kept having to move closer and closer to the steps as the tide came in – there was a time when the water was lapping against my Bass. A few feet got muddy and wet, but all these issues were in the name of perfection.
And the view behind us was perfect, the skyscrapers of Canary Wharf lit the sky, as did the O2 arena – formerly the Millenium Dome. Between the two was a green laser, cutting across the sky from a hilltop around a mile away – it marking the Greenwich Meridian, where east meets west. Add that to the water and the occasional passing boat and the “vista” was perfect – and hopefully we got some nice shots.
Stopping in at a pub on the way back along the river, we found out where the foot tunnels were. As usual with things like this, they were exactly where we had started our night – by the Cutty Sark, and in a somewhat circular fashion, that’s where our photoshoot ended.
I found the whole thing really enjoyable and I hope you can pick that up from what I’ve put here and the video that will go up soon. It was the first time we’d had a photoshoot with a professional photographer and I think we’ll get what want to get from it. On a personal level, I think I managed to avoid the usual funny faces – but hey, let’s wait until the pictures come in before I get cocky!