Frazzled in London – with a little ‘ICM’

Buckingham Palace

Buckingham Palace

I was in London recently for business purposes. A rare occurrence, so rather than waste the opportunity I took my camera with me in the hope that I could take a few shots at the very end of the day before catching the train home.

I also wanted to take a look at a second hand 90mm f2 summicron lens being sold by Richard Caplan in Pall Mall. The lens appealed to me but when I tested it on my camera it did appear to be ‘back focusing’. I tried a couple of other lenses including my own 50mm summilux and the results were the same. In real world use it probably wouldn’t be a problem but I was left pondering whether or not the rangefinder on the camera needed a fine adjustment. They did offer to send it away to be repaired but I decided not to do anything there and then, and simply make my way home.

By the time I left the shop in Pall Mall it was already dusk, so I walked down The Mall towards Buckingham Palace, heading for Victoria Station. I had joined the commuter conveyor belt all heading for the next train back to the comfort of their home.


The Queen's Gallery

The Queen’s Gallery


I was rather subdued by the thought that my camera was not focusing as accurately as it should, so given the time of day I came up with the idea that I would take some images using a relatively long shutter speed and some ICM or ‘intentional camera movement’. This would render everything soft, so lack of focus or sharpness didn’t matter.  It would take my mind off the ‘rangefinder adjustment’ issue.

Not having played with this technique before, I found it rather fun, as it was impossible to predict the results. It’s very much a matter of trial and error, so inevitably the shutter is released many times before an image looks ‘right’, well to my eyes anyway. A few members of the public who saw me using the camera must have wondered what I was doing, deliberately moving the camera up and down or from side to side as I pressed the shutter.

Here are just a few images that I think work and depict something of the hustle and bustle of London and the return journey home by so many commuters, only for them to repeat the same thing again tomorrow and the next day, and the next day, and the next day………how tedious!





Station Travellers

Station Travellers


The journey home

The journey home


'I'm on the train'

“I’m on the train’


Thanks for reading this entry and looking at my pictures. Do comment – as I would welcome any feedback, good or bad, on this style of photography.

5 Responses to “Frazzled in London – with a little ‘ICM’”

  1. Vicki

    Love the first and third images. As you say, its so hard to predict how they’re going to turn out. I’ve only ever made 2-3 ICMs that were successful.
    Not sure I like the last image, but on studying it for a while, it grows on me.


  2. westdeanie

    I like these – esp the second one – good movement! What feedback have you had?




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