Brighton – part 2

The Royal Pavilion is one of the most famous sights at Brighton, but you can’t come all the way to the coast without making it to the sea, and that was the next stop on my trip earlier this year.

It was a beautiful, sunny, day and although not the warmest, the deep blue sea sparkled against the largely cloudless sky. First off my friend and I headed to the pier where there were traditional rides and a stripy helter skelter.

We then walked along the very pebbly beach, which was quite a work out and just soaked in the view and the sun as well as just enjoying the stiff breeze against our faces. Afterwards we rewarded ourselves with delicious ice creams and colourful slushies.

One of the things we looked out for on the coast was the bandstand and when we came across it we could see why it was considered so iconic. It was right on the seafront and the Victorian style was stunning against the sea and sky.

Something else I unexpectedly saw nearby was the shell of a pier. Looking into the details, the West Pier had burnt down in 2003 and the remains were left and have since become one of the most photographed landmarks in Brighton, and it’s not hard to see why. Juxtaposed against the old was Brighton’s newest attraction; a moving viewing platform. I didn’t have time to go on myself, but I can imagine the views were amazing.

After spending some more time just walking along the seafront, we slowly started making our way back through the town centre and towards the station, to head home. We were really lucky to have such great weather for the day out in Brighton; there was plenty to keep my friend and I interested and there were some really beautiful views and buildings to photograph. I would very much recommend a visit to anyone who is interested.

WPC: Earth

This photo makes me think of Earth, especially at this time of year. The beauty and renewal that Spring time brings, in views like this, gives me hope and makes me smile. I’m lucky to have such amazing scenes close to home that really give me motivation and inspiration to go out and capture our wonderful, natural world.

Winter Lights 2017

Canary Wharf in London hosted a Winter Lights festival which I went along to last week. Last year was London’s first light festival which was huge and was based in the centre of the Capital. This year’s festival, however, was over a 2 weeks period, with less installations and in a less busy part of London, although still very attractive.

On arrival to Canary Wharf we were welcomed by a giant egg shaped structure that was lit up with changing colours that you could walk through, which I thought was vey pretty. Walking on we saw some lovely, illuminated angel wings with halos, but one of the best pieces on show, for me, were the bright neon strips tied around tree trunks. Light was shone one to them to bring out the reflective nature of the strips which looked very bright and almost psychedelic. It was a simple idea but one that was so striking.

Next we came across some balls that changed colour in sync to music being played, which was relaxing and entertaining, and some mist on water that had shapes and colours projected onto it, which if you moved around in front of made the shapes dance and change. Another of my favourites pieces on show was the super innovative water fall where the water was dropped in letters to form words that shone for a second before disappearing.

The last part of the festival was set up indoors which gave everyone a chance to warm up, and get out of the freezing cold evening. The most interesting light installation here was one that was operated with an EEG headset which a person put on, converting the person’s brainwaves into light movement and sound. It felt quite futuristic and I can imagine it being an idea that grows.

After 3 hours of walking around, I think I managed to see most of the light and art installations on show. The festival didn’t cost anything and it let me see some really innovative art, as well as enabling me to spend some in a part of London that I never usually visit.

Ramsgate, Kent

I’ve really wanted to go to the coast this Summer; I find that being by the sea relaxes and refreshes me and as we had a few hot days ahead I thought I’d take my chance. I decided on going to Ramsgate in Kent as it had a sandy beach instead of pebbly and I was curious as to what else was in the area as I’d never been before. On the day it turned out to be the hottest day of the year which made for an amazing, bright view.

On arrival I came across yachts and other boats in the harbour, sitting in the sparkling blue sea.

Nearby was the Maritime Museum, which housed lots of artifacts from the area as well as objects from World War Two. I wanted to go down into the well known Ramsgate war tunnels but unfortunately they were closed for the day.

I had some lunch (chips, and an ice slushi obviously) then headed to the beach. The view really was beautiful and calming, and blues like the sea, endless.

After paddling in the cold water and watching the waves for a while I brushed off the sand and headed back to the train station. On route I came across some colourful artwork.

I also passed a computer games museum which was closed, but walked around the courtyard of a church and a park which had these creative wood statues.

It was a really hot, sunny and relaxing day out and although there wasn’t loads to do, it was enough for a day trip. And the coast as always was soothing for my heart and soul as well as my eyes. It gave me time to think and to just switch off, and on the train home I visualised the beautiful sky and sea, hoping it isn’t too long before I see such a view again.

Sea view

Italian gardens in London

Wondering around Hyde park earlier this year I came across the Italian Gardens. The Gardens have embellished statues, urns and large water fountains, all which create a really nice relaxing space.

The main water fountain leading to the top of the Serpentine lake was a combination of a group of boys holding a huge platter with a woman on either side holding an urn, all pouring water into the lake.

On the far side of the garden is a chapel with really pretty flowers planted on either side in neat geometric rows.

I thought the gardens were laid out nicely and kept in really good condition. I found them to be a calming space with the sound of rushing water from the fountains drowning out some of the background noise and pretty flowers soothing to the eyes. I’ll definitely look to visiting it again at some point.

Southend escape

Summer in the UK this year hasn’t been too great, we had some hotter weather in July but since then its been cooler and wetter, so in light of this I wanted to make the most of any sunny days we did have and as I’ve been wanting to go to coast for a while, I picked the nearest, most easiest one to get to and went down for the day.
Southend on Sea isn’t one of the most prettiest beaches in the South East of England but it has lots of amusements and a long stretch of sand to enjoy. The view upon arriving was lovely; clear blue skies and a warm, bright day.

Southend

Southend has the longest pier in the world and I thought this would be a good place to start. The pier is 1.3 miles long and you can either walk down or take the tram that runs back and forth. I decided to walk and see if I needed a ride back if I was too tired. The view along the pier was beautiful, and I really enjoyed the walk, although it was a bit cooler with the sea breeze becoming stronger as I got further out. There were also lots of benches along the way in case you wanted to stop for a rest or just enjoy the lovely view.

On my walk up I saw several fishermen with their rods, I didn’t see any of them catch any fish but I’m sure they must have caught some later.

The ‘reward’ for getting to the end of the pier was a restaurant if you wanted a nice lunch and a refreshing drink, a viewing platform and the Lifeguard station.

After a taking in the view and visiting the gift shop I decided to walk back, I wasn’t tired and knew I would enjoy the walk over taking a tram ride. As I walked, I passed the fishermen still patiently waiting for a catch and watched as the coastline got closer and closer.

Once back on mainland I stopped for a quick lunch before heading down to the beach. As I walked along the sand I stopped to watch the waves and dip my toes in the too cold-for-a-swim water. There were other people out too but it wasn’t busy which was nice. The sand at Southend is a mixture of sand, pebbles and seashells. There were lots strewn along the water’s edge, washed up and left behind by the endless tides. I was chuffed to spot an unopened oyster shell which seemed to still have oyster inside.

Further up I spotted some colourful boats sitting on the deck in the bright sun.

In the late afternoon, I dusted off the sand from my jeans and out of my shoes and strolled back to the train station and home. I don’t have the opportunity to go the coast very often but I always find it so calming and relaxing. Being by the sea on a warm, sunny day with a cool breeze seems to give me peace of mind and the beautiful, sparkling water is the coolness my eyes long for and just what I need after a trying time in the city.