Back to the streets of Portsmouth city centre in April and we had a splash of sunshine and colour which was much appreciated! We had a great turnout with some familiar faces plus a welcome return of some of the OG Photo Walkshop crew from the early 2016 days too!
The walk started off at the stone steps of Portsmouth Guildhall and we used these steps to warm ourselves up physically and creatively, with immediately thinking about composition with leading lines and low angles. There are at the top of the steps loads of interesting textures and details too that often get missed. From here we made our way across the square and up the civic offices steps to the striking Brutalist architecture of the Norrish Central Library. This building is iconic and a bottomless well of interesting perspectives for a photographer. For us we spent time exploring around the tower plus the glass windows of the civic offices opposite too, with the vertical glass tunnel and the sky reflected on the windows above. We headed down past the university halls to the law courts and looked back up the way using the curve in the path and building to guide the eye to the small tower block.
Around the back of this building is the multistory carpark and this is another fantastic location packed with creative opportunity. Kicking off with another touch of Brutalism, the concrete stairwell here is a really interesting focal point from both the ground and working up the stairs to the top. The angles of the corners in the stairs also catch the light and work great with minimalistic photos of light and shadow. The lower levels are great when there are puddles and we got lucky with reflections and the carpark being pretty empty too. The concrete shaped roof and the green tarmac add interest and we shot with both our cameras and phones looking for those converging lines, layers and reflections. We then headed to the top floor which not only had the lift/fire escape towers that are always fun to shoot but also views out over the local area and across the city skyline. We used this location to spend some time just exploring, experimenting and I was happy to answer questions anyone had. From here we headed down the stairs (the lift…well, you can imaging the smell) and went over to some of the nooks and crannies of the civic offices.
The civic offices are often thought of as the big glass frontage but maybe more interesting are the small entrances/exits and access areas around the back with strong angles and more light/shadow. I was happy (hmm) to volunteer to model in one of the steps areas, using the pocket of sunlight enclose the subject. From here it was a short walk down the road to finish up at the back of the library and then the final group photo at the ‘wall of mirrors’ office building. What an amazing morning and a big thank you to everyone who came along. – Paul
New walkshops dates up soon!