Battersea Power Station is an iconic London landmark, despite being empty and basically unused for thirty years. Battersea Power Station has been in the news recently as the developer of the Battersea (West London) site, recently valued at £500 million, has entered administration.
Many schemes have been developed for Battersea Power Station, including one by MJP Architects, completed just before I entered their office as a part one architecture student. Rafael Vinoly developed the most recent scheme for Battersea Power Station, but this too has sadly failed.
Chelsea Football Club are currently involved in developing a scheme, also with Vinoly and KPF Architects to place a new football stadium near the power station, but this scheme is being opposed by The Battersea Power Station Community Group, who apparently (source) want the building transformed into an exhibition centre.
Personally I would love to see Battersea Power Station become Tate West London, or something similar, hardly an original idea but Tate Modern is one of my favourite spaces in London. Either that or leave it just as it is, a kind of mouldering theme park to a long-gone, once world-leading industrial powerhouse of a city.
Photographing Battersea Power Station
During the Summer of 2010, I was on the opposite bank of the Thames from Battersea Power Station, photographing a housing scheme for Haworth Tompkins Architects, the Peabody Estate in Pimlico. Walking back from the shoot, I could not help but notice how fantastic Battersea Power Station was looking, and so took a couple of shots.
Battersea Power Station, architectural photography by Simon Kennedy, London Architectural Photographer. This shot was taken with a Toyo VX125b, Rodenstock 135mm Apo-Sironar-S, shot on Fuji Pro 160NC, a 15 minute exposure at f16. Large format is not easy in the dark (or at any other time) but it is almost always worth the extra effort in my opinion.
The crop below is from a 270 megapixel scan (18000 x 15000 pixels) made by Tim Parkin of cheapdrumscanning.com. As you can see, the individual bricks are (just) visible in the wall of the power station. This is not my sharpest ever negative, but clearly it is detailed.
Battersea Power Station Christmas Card
This is an adjusted verison of the Battersea Power Station shot, that I sent out as my Christmas card this year. I don’t think it requires much explanation!!
This is the blog of Simon Kennedy, London Architectural Photographer. If you would like to see more of my work, please visit www.simonkennedy.net
hi. i’m just starting out with LF night shooting and would like to ask your advice on exposure: what kind of meter are you using to determine long exposures like this?
I use my 5d as a meter. If I keep the file it also gives a digital record of the shot, when/where etc. If you do this you need to recognize the differences in dynamic range between film and digital – negative film has FAR more, slide film less. So for negative film you need to meter for the shadows.
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