24.02.13, Week 80: Archive 19
In the summer a friend and I went to Hyde Park to watch the Men’s Marathon Swimming event in the Serpentine. I hadn’t been to Hyde Park before, and the place was absolutely packed out with people. I actually had to do the paparazzi-esque action of holding my camera above people’s heads in order to get a shot of the swimmers going past.
My experience of the crowd made me proud to be British that day. A Dutch swimmer fell behind the main pack by an increasing margin throughout the race. It got to the point where the pack would be exiting the bend at the end of the lake when he was entering it, and by the following lap, he was even further behind. However, he was cheered even more loudly by the crowd than the pack was when he went past. It made me think back to my primary school sports days where, in a typically British fashion, we were encouraged to cheer the last person as much as possible to help them finish. It’s a value that’s stuck with me throughout my life, and something which I hold myself to.
As I just stuck my camera over the heads of the people in front of me and pressed the shutter release, I can’t really take much credit for the framing or focus of the shot because I didn’t actually have much control over it. I fiddled with it quite a lot in Lightroom, both rotating and cropping the image until I got it to an angle that I liked. The focus is on the Union Jack, which I luckily captured at almost its full extent, rather than the swimmers or the boats following them. I actually like this focal point as I am particularly fond of my country’s flag, and it reminds the viewer that it was at the London Olympics in 2012. The image might benefit from having shown more of the trees in the background, and less of the crowd in the foreground. However, I think it would detract from the flag being the focal point of the image and is therefore perhaps better left as it is.
This Time Last Year
Reflections in a St. John’s Wood Church’s window: 26.02.12, Week 28: Archive 4.
Date taken: 10.08.12
Speed: 1/1250 sec
Focal length: 24mm