Thursday, July 30, 2009
the weather has been truly english in the last few weeks, every day we have a bit of every season.
the weather forecast has been mostly useless and as random as the weather itself.
the pictures above were taken on my way home the other night,
luckily that time it poured with rain while I was on the bus
and not, as twice last week, on the bike.
tomorrow's my last day at work already. I'm happy and sad at the same time.
I don't always love my job, but I'll miss my colleagues a lot.
I'm very much looking forward to a time of less responsibilities
(at least less that involve deadlines, and buildings).
I'm sure I'll be posting some images from germany next week.
until then I wish you a lovely weekend!
Monday, July 27, 2009
interesting front gardens on my way home the other night.
good news: my pentax ME does not seem to have shutter problems after all.
I had been so worried after about 1/3 of each of the last 5 films had been extremely underexposed.
so on friday I decided to be brave and give it another try after a change of batteries and some cleaning
and it seems to be alright. I'm very happy.
I had forgotten how small + light the pentax is compared to my new digital SLR!
Saturday, July 25, 2009
so this is the reason I'm still in London.
I've been working on the refurbishment of this little mews house for a year now.
it was supposed to be finished four weeks ago.
and will not be 100% finished when I leave at the end of this coming week.
I am mostly happy about how things turned out.
there are a few things I would have done differently if it had been my own.
it can be very hard to watch the client make (in my opinion) terrible choices.
but once you realize that it's just your own ego, and that the client will be very happy, it's easier to get over it.
I'm only showing some of the bits I like here, no pictures of 70s-looking (very expensive) tiling
in the bathrooms or remote-controlled fireplaces.
it's amazing to go to site every week and see things turn out how you imagined them to be.
I have learnt so much doing this, it was the first time I have seen one of my projects being built.
but now it feels right to move on.
Wednesday, July 22, 2009
if I had to name just one favourite place in London, I think it would be the Barbican.
every time I go I am still in awe that a structure like this was really built.
at least from today's point of view, and after having dealt with the british planning system myself for two years,
it seems incredible that a vision like this could have been made reality.
the architects, Chamberlin, Powell and Bon, were comparatively young at the time
and had only built one other project before (the Golden Lane Estate just north of the Barbican).
the Barbican is a great place to be (even if concrete does not happen to be your favourite material):
you can go see the exhibition, films, concerts.
you can sit in the courtyard by the lake for lunch, coffee, drinks or dinner and watch the ducks.
you can wander around, three storeys above street level, and imagine how it would be to live in one of the flats.
you can sit on the tables or sofas just outside the great hall and listen to the concert that's going on inside,
and buy a drink from one of the bars. but nobody will tell you to go away if you don't.
I do love concrete, and the strength of these massive forms overwhelms me
and makes my knees feel shaky for a moment every time I go (and I go a lot).
You can feel the architects' vision in every step you take. I think that's what good architecture is all about.
the images above are my favorite ones, but you can see a lot more, including some from the inside, here.
Sunday, July 19, 2009
Liberty is an oasis in the busy west end shopping streets.
it's very calm in there but not too quiet, the light filters through the glazed roofs of the courtyards
and you can browse through expensive clothing, beautiful furniture, the famous fabrics and many more things
without shop assistants watching your every move.
they have a great choice of designers and often feature young independent ones in little displays.
it's at the same time very traditional and incredibly up to date.
let me be quite clear here:
I will NOT miss being stuck between a million other sweaty people
on trains without air-conditioning!!
but still, while being underground one can't help but notice so many beautiful things and colours.
the bubble mirrors definitely have a special place in my heart.
1 green park, obviously!
2,3,4, 5 borough (which has the most beautiful staircase ever)
6,7,8 finsbury park station has the prettiest little circus-style tiles
Friday, July 17, 2009
I only started cycling in London about two months ago, I'd always been too scared.
But now that I'm doing it, it feels so good.
I'm seeing so many bits and corners of the city that I'd never seen before.
I'll miss crossing the river every day.
Monday, July 13, 2009
Columbia Road flower market
(since I'll be leaving London soon I thought I'd post a little series of the things I'll miss.
there's no particular order, and it's a good reason to visit all my favourite places before I leave)
Saturday, July 11, 2009
these are from my current neighborhood, Finsbury Park.
It's nice to live in again another neighborhood before leaving London.
It's three more weeks at work for me, and less than five til I leave for NYC.
I'm getting pretty excited, and pretty scared at the same time.