Wednesday, November 18, 2009


click photo to enlarge
I have said elsewhere in this blog that I think I could have been a futurologist. It's a job with little responsibility - I mean, honestly, how many people really believe your predictions? Moreover, you know for a fact that much of what you foresee will never come to pass, so failure in your job is a given. However, it would definitely be great fun (for a while at least) to get up each morning and sit at your desk trying to discern trends; extrapolate the present into the future; and make inspired (or otherwise) guesses about things that will come to be that don't yet exist, even as a figment of someone's imagination.

This thought went through my mind as I walked down the London Underground pedestrian tunnel shown in today's photograph. Though I've travelled on gleaming, stainless steel escalators and moving "walkways", none of them said "future" to me in the way this tunnel did. Perhaps it's because it looks like a glimpse of the future as dreamed up in the 1960s. The concealed lighting, muted colours (only the blue handrail and matching blue flecks on the wall enlivened the whites, greys and earth tones), circle segments and converging lines could be a set on the 1968 Arthur C. Clarke/Stanley Kubrick film 2001: A Space Odyssey.

As we used the tunnel to move from one section of the network to another I paused a moment, letting my companions continue ahead to provide some mid-ground interest, set the LX3 to its widest angle (24mm at 35mm equiv.), and took this shot. The original colour version of the image isn't especially colourful, but when I looked at it in black and white I liked not only the way it emphasised the converging lines but also the "looking at the future from the past" feel described above.

photograph & text (c) T. Boughen

Camera: Lumix LX3
Mode: Aperture Priority
Focal Length: 5.1mm (24mm/35mm equiv.)
F No: f2
Shutter Speed: 1/30
ISO: 160
Exposure Compensation: -0.3 EV
Image Stabilisation: On