Posts tagged ‘Tate Modern’

Leica M Monochrom – the good news, bad news sandwich!


Clouds over Prinsted

Shortly after I acquired my Leica M Monochrom, I became aware of an issue relating to the CCD sensor; not only to this camera but also the M9 and the ME. The problem was one of corrosion on the sensor which could manifest itself at any time. Leica was quick to respond to this news when it broke a few years ago and guaranteed that for the lifetime of the camera a faulty sensor would be replaced. In fact they went further and said that even if a sensor was replaced the guarantee would apply to the new sensor as well.

This is old news really, but aware of the issue I have always been on the lookout for the problem. The good news being that I had comfort in knowing that if ever I discovered any sign of corrosion, the camera could and would be repaired at no cost. But I would of course have to suffer the inconvenience of being without the camera for several weeks as the work can only be undertaken by Leica in Germany.

When processing the above image of ‘Clouds over Prinsted’ I was cleaning the picture for sensor spots and noticed a number of marks which were not typical of dust on the sensor. In fact they were more like ‘flying saucers’ – a dark spot with a light and dark halo. (See the screen grab below of the offending article – just above the tree line).


The mark on the sensor which is almost certainly the sign of the corrosion issue.

Fearing the worst I did some research which only confirmed that the dreaded ‘corrosion on the sensor’ issue had finally reared its ugly head. Yes, I could clone out the marks, but assuming the  corrosion might spread the camera would have to be repaired. Bad News!

I rang the Leica Store in Mayfair in London and they said that whilst the camera could be collected by courier, if I took the camera in personally, they would provide me with a loan M Monochrom for the duration of the repair at no cost. They informed me the turn round time would be approximately six weeks. Having access to a replacement camera was Great News! I would have it for my planned trip to Pembrokeshire in Wales which comes up shortly and by the time I travel to Scotland the repair should have been carried out and my Monochrom would be back in my hands.


Leica M Monochrom with 50mm Summilux and 28mm Elmarit lenses

So yesterday I caught the train up to London, swapped cameras at The Leica Store in Mayfair and took the opportunity to visit Tate Modern, specifically to see The Radical Eye exhibition. A superb collection of photographs owned by Sir Elton John. I will write about this exhibition in a future post. All I would say is that if you can get to London do go – it continues until 21st May 2017.

Light, shadows and illusions – inside The Turbine Hall of Tate Modern



A couple of days ago I posted an entry depicting the people, light and their shadows inside this same venue. You can read my words and see the images here.

When I first arrived at Tate Modern I was fascinated by the way the afternoon sun came through the vast roof light above me and the tall vertical windows in the west wall. Together they created many interesting shadows and patterns of light on the building’s structure, the textured concrete floor and in some cases the reflective surfaces enclosing the Turbine Hall. For your information this hall is 152m long and 35m high; it’s huge.

I liked the view at the head of this post, but I did wonder what it would be like if taken at ground level. The next shot is looking into the same corner of the hall, but has a more abstract feel to it.




It was then that I noticed the light and shadows falling on the floor being mirrored in the the ‘polished’ wall surface. Would a slightly different view point and a more abstract composition give me an image which truly bought all these elements together and what would be the result?

Here is the final image in this short series of three. You may wish to click on the picture to see a larger version.




It has a rather surreal look about it. There appears to be a layer of ‘floating light’, hanging above the floor. It’s an optical illusion of course but the way the light and shadows are being mirrored produces this effect and for me this is the most visually interesting of the three.

Here are two other photographs taken inside the Turbine Hall.




Here again I like the way the people behind the glass are distorted whilst the light makes interesting patterns, adding further interest to the overall composition.

Finally here is a shot looking towards the tall vertical windows. Taken through glass the reflection of the hand rail is distorted and a small figure stands alone in the bottom left hand corner. A point of interest but also necessary to give scale to the image.




I only spent an hour or so wandering around, but I am inspired to go back. Arrive early and leave late – Watching, observing and waiting for the light to change direction and intensity during the course of the day. Waiting for a suitable person or a group of people to be in the optimum place, moving in the right direction to enhance the composition. When all these ingredients come together I will press the shutter, and who knows what the results may be. I can’t wait to return!

All the images in this post were taken with the Leica M Monochrom using a Leica 90mm f2.4 Summarit lens, processed in Lightroom and Silver Efex Pro. Do click on any of the photos to view a larger version.

People, light and shadows – inside the Turbine Hall of Tate Modern

Light worker

Light worker


Occasionally I travel to London for a business meeting. It doesn’t happen very often but when it does, I like to make the most of the day and if time permits take a few shots before the train journey back home.

Earlier this week I found myself in the City, so I decided to visit Tate Modern. Not for the artworks but for the Turbine Hall, a truly massive space, which previously housed electricity generators and is now used as a social space for art installations. I had been inspired to do so by fellow blogger Andy Hooker of LensScaper when he wrote about his visit to this very same place.

Although I had been to Tate Modern before it was never with the intention of taking photographs. You may say I am strange but on this occassion I was more interested in the building itself, its architecture, the people it attracts, than I was in the works of art on display. The light to me was as wonderful as the varied art this gallery has on show.

By the time the business of the day was over, it was quite late when I arrived, but I was very fortunate with the light. The sun had moved round to the west and its light was pouring in through large vertical windows casting long stripes of light on the heavily textured concrete floor. As visitors moved towards the exit it was interesting to see how perhaps sub consciously they would walk along the ‘light stripes’ as if they were being guided to the door.

I enjoyed watching and waiting as visitors and city workers moved around, just hoping that I would be in the right position to take the shot that I could picture in my minds eye.


Light follower

Light follower


Light stripes

Light stripes


Light crossing

Light crossing


I hope you enjoy these images and in the days to come I will be posting a further entry which will include more pictures of the Turbine Hall itself.

All the images in this post were taken with the Leica M Monochrom using a Leica 90mm f2.4 Summarit lens, processed in Lightroom and Silver Efex Pro. Do click on any of the photos to view a larger version.

I have written before on the subject of Museums and Art Galleries in London. Here are just two posts which you might like to read.

Rich photo opportunities in London’s museums and galleries.

The Natural History Museum – without any nature!