After staying up until almost 4a.m. last night, I had a 7a.m. wakeup call to head to Birmingham, London to shoot the Jamaican Team Training Camp Pre-Olympic Event. I was super excited for this event because Jamaican sprinter, and Olympic gold medalist, Usain Bolt would be there. Knowing I would have pretty decent access during the event made me anxious to get there, but I knew I would need a good breakfast to keep me going all day. So, I headed downstairs for my first English styled breakfast with my co-worker JD Mercer and ordered fried and scrambled eggs. While the fried egg was really good, I can’t say the same for the scrambled eggs that tasted as if they were soaked in a gallon of water. Needless to say, I did not finish those.
After finishing breakfast I was off to the Euston Underground Station where I would catch a Virgin Train to Birmingham for my shoot. Before entering the train station I fired off a few quick frames of the exterior of the station.
Once I entered and got my tickets I checked the arrivals and departures board, but my train was not scheduled to leave for another twenty minutes.
I stood patiently between platforms 7 & 6, and even tried to find platform 6 3/4 while I waited…. but no luck! :)
I boarded my train and within 5 minutes I was asleep till I reached my final destination. Once at the Birmingham New train station I hopped into a cab and was off to the University of Birmingham to shoot the Jamaican Team Training Camp Pre-Olympic Event.
For an hour they did interviews with the television stations around the track, so there was nothing overly exciting for me to shoot. Everyone I talked to said they will be running some practice trials, so I could at least get something good. But 2 hours into the event they decided they weren’t running, which was disappointing because all I had were headshots and pictures with tv cameras. Oh yeah! I forgot to mention the best part…. Usain Bolt NEVER showed up to the event. He just blew it off with hundreds of fans and media members waiting to talk to him.
After the event was over I nailed off a few pictures of the press conference, so I could head back to London.
As I was walking to the train station I came across a little downtown shopping area that was pretty cool.
Before I headed to the hotel, I made a stop at the King’s Cross St. Pancras Underground Station, to make a few feature photos, as that will be the most busy station when the games start.
I jumped on the tube at King’s Cross St. Pancras Underground and went one stop to Russell Square.
As I was exiting the Russell Square Station there light was shining on the building quite nicely.
I stopped by the hotel to do a quick shower before I headed back out to shoot some more.
Tomorrow morning at 6a.m. the Olympic Lane will be open to only Olympic authorized vehicles, so I will be able to walk right down the street from my hotel and access the bus to the games.
I found the stop full of people waiting to get on the bus.
This picture from my walk was interesting because the light was shinning perfectly right on the Olympic Lane painted on the street.
Another shot from my walk to Tower Bridge captured 3 people canoeing down the Thames River.
After it seemed like I was walking for hours I finally made it to Tower Bridge. Everyone has over shot the bridge so I decided I wanted something different! I took a water taxi from Tower Bridge to Westminster. This allowed me to get just about even with the Olympic Rings in the middle of the river.
The water taxi dropped me right in front of Big Ben. The light was not helping my shot, so I stopped into a coffee shop and waited for it to get dark. I did the infamous slow shutter speed with Big Ben in the background.
The giant ferris wheel, The London Eye, isn’t actually a typical ferris wheel. Instead, its a tiny capsule people can go in and ride.
Here, a taxi, painted with the British flag, makes a turn down a street.
After being in the Westminster area for a while I wanted to head back to the MPC. So I jumped on the tube for a 20 min ride to Stratford Station and went to the MPC. I wanted to get some nice shots of the venues lit up at night.
The Aquatics Centre
When I passed Olympic Stadium they were doing a light test. So immediately as I walked up they stopped. So I waited for a good 15 minutes before giving up on the shot. Wouldn’t you know it, as soon as I started walking away they started again!
The lights started with white then switching to blue.
After then I headed towards the MPC where I jumped on a bus and headed back to the hotel. Even though my morning was pretty slow, the second part of my day definitely made up for it. Let’s see what day three brings!
I have been using a Nike+ Fuel band to keep track of my walking. I have been in London for 2 days and have walked 24.2 miles. Today I walked 14.5 miles. Check it out!