This week, we will showcase the work of one of our friends, photographer Nikolay Pandev (or Nick). London was his home for 15 years (now he lives in Bulgaria’s capital Sofia but regularly visits London).
We asked Nick to share some of his fond memories of photographing London. Here are the stories behind some of his professional pictures. They could help you in the way you take pictures of London to build your own fond memories…
A few words about the man himself…
Nick is a visual artist. If you ask him, he wouldn’t tell you that he is an award-winning photographer or bore you with testimonials. Because according to him, this is not what matters most. He prefers to let his visuals ‘speak’ for themselves. But we can tell you that he is an exclusive visual contributor for iStock by Getty Images. Also, NatGeo published his work in the 125th anniversary edition. He appeared in NatGeo Traveler mag, PhotoPlus mag, TED speaker. He is also an educator, a world traveller, an environmentalist and an awesome dad (according to his kids)!
Nick loves travelling and enjoys life to the fullest. He goes beyond boundaries to live, experience and capture that unique moment in time. Because as he says: “before you know it, it’s gone forever”.
If he hadn’t discovered the joy of photography, he might have been a chef, a painter, a mathematician, a sculptor, an engineer, or an interior designer. In fact, he’s had some of these jobs and was very successful at them. Yes, we’re very well connected at London Undiscovered and know some geniuses privately 🙂
But anyway, the bottom line is that his artistic nature helped him discover photography, and he’s in love with it. He just can’t help it. And what makes him good in what he does is that he is not motivated by money and can therefore enjoy total freedom with the artistic process.
Some amazing pictures of London
Here are some of his all time favourite images of London and the stories behind them.
“One of my all time favourite images from London. The story is that there is no story 😉 most of my images created in London or around were done with some awesome friends… both living in the city or guests visiting. This particular one is with a good friend of mine Andrey Andreev (travel blogger) when visiting me in London and we went out to get some shots around the heart of downtown. My purpose was to capture some motion in one of the busiest places on the planet – the never ‘’sleeping’’ London and minding the fact that I do love the long exposure photography technique – hope you like the result. The image was a 1st place winner in ‘’Second is not enough’’ by Manfrotto and later found its way to NatGeo Traveller, it was selected as editor’s choice of 500px and limited prints for a life saving charity campaign were produced as well.”
“This one might not display the greatest composition and the most pleasing light conditions, but I love the fact that the above image lasted only a split second. It is also great to see wildlife in a place where you would not expect it. This picture also shows a contrast between the subjects. My other idea was to show one of the most photographed cities in the world (= London) in a different way. Lots of visitors and photographers have their images taken from this very same spot… but at least I got a seagull posing for me 🙂 ”
“I would easily say that Autumn is my favourite season. Some might relate it to the constant light showers and the foggy mornings, but I relate it to the warm colours of the fallen leafs and the foliage of the trees. If I know that there might be a photo opportunity near the banks of the Thames, I check the tide times online and go explore with my camera gear and tripod close to the water. Again, searching for a different angle of view while avoiding busy footpaths.”
“As an architecture lover London is a gem. Every corner has its shape and story, be it an ancient sandstone or an ultra-modern minimalistic façade, it is just everywhere. Sometimes I just look and point my wide angle lens straight up using a low angle view and the above image is a good example.”
“I love the architectural contrasts between old and new. These are both towers but with a few centuries difference.”
“Love going back, again and again to the same spots around town, light and conditions are always different. Only 1h time difference at the same spot could produce completely different images and visualisations of the same building or place and of course impress the viewer in another way.”
“I love photographing how the city ‘’grows’’ and all the latest buildings still under construction.”
Seeing London through the eyes of a photographer is very interesting. It makes you think about angles you would not have thought about or think about simple but clever things such as revisiting the same spots at various moments during the day or even checking the tide times to get some unusual pictures of the Thames and its banks. But the main advice to take from Nick is to really go out and explore London and make sure you always have a camera handy so you too can show us London through your own eyes.
You can see more of Nick’s professional photos on his social networks: