Vodaphone Uncut

Quite often there doesn’t seem to be a lot to photograph at demonstrations, and the UKUncut demonstration outside Vodaphone in Oxford St over their avoidance of UK Tax was one case.  At the time it was due to start there were more photographers than protesters, with a few police standing around and a couple of security men in the shop doorway, with some slightly anxious-looking shop staff. It really was not promising.

Fortunately some more protesters arrived, and they sat down on the pavement in front of the shop, but it was still rather hard going to find anything other than the obvious.

© 2011, Peter Marshall

I saw (and photographed) this woman writing on her hand and then moved closer and photographed her. I took two frames without flash, but although they were ok, felt I needed to make her stand out a little more – so this has just a little flash to help.

© 2011, Peter Marshall

This was another picture that almost worked, but I find the hands at top left and the head at bottom right too distracting. But it was the best I could manage, although I took quite a few frames trying to get what I wanted.

Of course I always try to take some images that give a more overall view of the situation, even though these are often rather ordinary pictures.

© 2011, Peter Marshall

At one point on the D300 I switched to manual to get more precise control over a particular image, and then forgot to switch back. It probably wouldn’t have mattered much, but I think sometimes cameras have minds of their own, and the D300 decided that since I’ve never taken a picture at its fastest shutter speed of 1/8000 it would take this as an opportunity to try.

I don’t like to ‘chimp’ while I’m working unless I have a very specific need to do so, as otherwise it interrupts my flow, so by the time I noticed what the wretched camera had been up to I had probably around 30 images taken at about 5 stops under. Or to put it another way, exposed for something like ISO12,800 or 25,600. Most had just a very dim image and I deleted them immediately, but there were one or two I decided might be worth keeping and trying to rescue in Lightroom. Here is one of them:

© 2011, Peter Marshall

Even with fairly heavy noise reduction quite a lot of colour noise remains and it has a very washed out look – which might go down well in a fashion magazine but isn’t really my kind of thing. But the surprising thing is that it exists at all.

It wasn’t a great calamity, as I was mainly working on the D700, using the 16-35mm lens, and just taking a few images – such as this one – with the D300 and the 18-125mm. I found something was severely wrong when I tried to take a few pictures with an even longer lens and couldn’t get anything to work, though it took me a little while to work out why.

You can read more about the protest and see more pictures in UK Uncut Protest VAT Rise at Vodaphone on My London Diary.

2 Responses to “Vodaphone Uncut”

  1. ChrisL says:

    Pedant mode for info not publication. Lens 18-105mm ? not 18-125mm 4 lines up from end.

  2. You are right. I do have an 18-125mm though (a Sigma) so I could have been right. I was writing in a rush to get out and take some more pictures!

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