New Platinum Print: Paddington Station

If you’re a photographer, you might empathise with this — occasionally (or regularly) making a photograph that you know you like but you’re not quite sure how or what will be the right way to finish it off, to properly close the loop…

I must say, it doesn’t normally take as long as fourteen years to come to a decision.

However, back in 1999, I captured the layered platform rooves of Paddington Station, a mainline railway station in West London.

Although I loved the graphic simplicity of the scene, it was an image that went on the back-burner.

Finding the photograph a couple of weeks ago put me straight into the mindset of a vintage Paddington Station.

Some of the buildings are clearly more modern but nevertheless it reminds me of a time gone by.

I’m not sure why, maybe it’s the weightiness or the puff of white rising from one of the platforms; maybe it’s simply the fact that it was shot on nostalgic ol’ black and white film with my Nikon.

Whatever the reasons, I knew instantly that it would make a fine Platinum/Palladium print.

I set to work making the Digital Negative and sent it off to Richard (take a look at the process here).

When Prints No.1 and No.2 arrived back, I was over the moon — just what I’d hoped for:

Paddington Station, West London, UK, 1999, photographed by Jack Lowe

In hindsight, I think I was a little ahead of myself when I released the shutter on this scene.

Rather than the photographic tastes I had then, it was as if I was seeing ahead to the tastes I would have now with an older head on my shoulders.

Perhaps that’s why it’s taken so long for me to close this particular loop.

Anyway, I managed to find a clip of The Last Journey, a story about Bob Holt’s last journey as a railway engine driver before his retirement.

The clip depicts Paddington in the 1930s, a time when Platinum printing had already become scarce due to the war effort, and a good example of the station back in the day:

If you would like to buy one of these beautiful signed, numbered and embossed prints, you can find it nestled among others here in my Platinum Collection.

Paddington Station, West London, UK, 1999, photographed by Jack Lowe

Sunday Digression: The Great Mystery

Just a little digression on a Sunday…

Last weekend, I took the long drive south from Newcastle with my boys and visited my Granny near Southampton.

She had a stroke recently but, thankfully, has made an almost complete and miraculous recovery.

Her recovery is all the more poignant for us as she has now outlived her elder daughter, my mother, by more than thirteen years.

Like so many in modern times, my Mum was brought down by the Big C, passing on to The Great Mystery at the ripe old age of 42 (I was 24 at the time).

She used to love walking along the shore at Warsash where the River Hamble meets Southampton Water, a spot where we were to eventually scatter her ashes.

I hadn’t been there for a while, so I suggested to Granny that we take a wander along there together.

Southampton Water, Fawley Oil Refinery, sunset

Looking for America…

As the sun set and the tide slipped away, I remembered Mum telling me that, when she was a young girl, she used to look across to the gargantuan Fawley Oil Refinery on the far shore and think it was America.

It’s a sadness for me that my boys didn’t know my Mum. Callum was two when she died and Jude wasn’t yet born.

Still, it was lovely to know that we were all walking together along a path she had trodden herself on many an occasion…

Sunset over Southampton Water and the River Hamble

New Print: Peel Island

In August last year, I wrote a post entitled The Lake District and I.

One of the photographs from that camping trip has always stuck in my mind — the view over Peel Island (of Swallows and Amazons fame) on Coniston Water.

Peel Island, Coniston Water, 2012 by Jack Lowe

Over a year on, I’ve finally made the time to work on the print of this photograph, one that encapsulates so many of my experiences and feelings about the Lake District.

Largely, as you can see from the sky, I guess those feelings tend to revolve around an imminent drenching.

Indeed, at the time, I mentioned beauty in dankness.

For those who don’t know — if you’re vaguely dry in the Lake District, it’s about to rain. If you’re soaked to the skin, it’s raining already…

If you’d like a stunning signed, numbered and embossed Archival Pigment Print of this photograph, you can purchase yours from my Lake District Collection.