South London Photographer: A magical moment

I hate, hate, hate being late.  It actually makes me feel a little bit sick if time starts getting on and I think I will be.  So, especially when I work, I always leave plenty of time to get somewhere, often ensuring there’s a little extra room in my schedule to sit down and have a coffee beforehand so I can relax and get my head in the right place.

In the run up to Saturday, I had a constant debate going round and round in my head about whether or not to drive across London or get the tube to do a wedding job. Traffic can be dreadful on a Saturday but I prefer being in my car if I can before work and it’s more convenient at the end of the day when I’m tired, so in the end I planned to drive, park near the pub where the reception was being held and go and have a light lunch near the registry office.  Best laid plans and all that…. cut to, me panicking in traffic that was far worse than I could ever have predicted with just over an hour to get there, having been in my car for an hour and half already!  Oh my god!!!  Why did I make the decision to drive, I kept asking myself, when clearly the right thing would have been the train/tube combo?  Aaaaah!

Although my satnav said 18 minutes driving left, I knew there was no way I’d make it as I sat motionless behind a bus that simply wasn’t going anywhere.  So, more than slightly sweaty and tingling with horror now, I turned off, found a car park in Mayfair and ran for the Underground.  I was feeling really sick at that point.  But I knew that as long as the tubes were running I’d be there at the time agreed, half an hour before the ceremony, although that gave me no wiggle room at all, and I HATE that!

I made it.  I was one of the first from the wedding party I was there to photograph to arrive. Phew… I found a way to calm down somehow and had a great day working at a wonderful wedding for two genuinely lovely, kind and generous people.

However, at the end of a long and tiring day I had to return to Mayfair and fetch my car, which of course was a bit of a pain.  But had none of that happened, I’d never have taken the photograph I’m publishing here.  As I came out of Green Park Station a women in a big flouncy wedding dress whooshed passed me surrounded by a group of men.  It would have been odd at anytime, but I’d just been at a wedding where all traditional conceits had been eschewed in favour of a more modern and idiosyncratic approach.  So definitely no big flouncy dress!  I loved it – but more of that in another blog.

Anyway, despite having not one but two big, expensive cameras hanging round my neck I really only had time to use my phone – she would have been gone if I’d taken the time to untangle the cameras from my bag, removed a lens cap, etc…  It was dark and only one of the four exposures I took had anything worth considering.  But I really like this image.  I tend to do a lot on my phone as I go about my day but I still think of them mostly as doodles. However, I do think with this image, the stress and panic I felt earlier in the day was just about worth it, as I wouldn’t have seen this women in her magical dress swish past me on Piccadilly at 10 o clock in the evening, coming from and going to who knows where….

One thing I have learnt though – if the job’s in London on a Saturday, just stick to public transport.

Right, the start of another busy week!

(c)sarahjanefield 2015IMG_7402

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