Friday, February 05, 2016

Flying the Union flag

click photo to enlarge
I get the impression that the Union flag of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland (the UK) is being flown more in recent years than was formerly the case. In January of 2007 I posted a piece about just this subject, noting that it appeared less often than some of the flags of the constituent countries of the UK. Perhaps the referendum on Scotland's independence, that narrowly voted for that country's continuance as part of the UK, has concentrated political minds and a more concerted effort to promote the benefits of unity is under way. One can only hope so.

During my lifetime some nation states, for example West and East Germany, have merged. However, fragmentation has been much more common, and in, for example, eastern Europe, it has at times been very difficult to keep up with the number and names of newly appearing countries. This year the UK's lamentable government, that exercises total power on the back of a mere 36.9% of those who voted, is to invite us to vote on whether to accept a package of changes relating to our membership of the European Community, or to exit from that political grouping. This is being done largely in a (futile) attempt to resolve the ambivalent view of the Conservative Party about being part of Europe. I shall vote for continuing membership for economic and social reasons. I will also be mindful of the fact that wars in Europe are not uncommon, that they usually begin with disputes between near neighbours, and that the people of countries that work together and share common values and aspirations don't, as a rule, try and kill one another.

Today's photograph shows the Union flag flying on the City Hall in Peterborough. My first shot was from the side that was fully lit by the sun. It was fine but relatively uninteresting. I liked this contre jour shot better. It was taken when the sun was behind a cloud. The shadows of the building were much more dramatic and the composition gave greater prominence to the colours of the translucent flag.

photograph and text © Tony Boughen

Photo Title: Union Flag, Peterborough City Hall
Camera: Olympus E-M10
Mode: Aperture Priority
Focal Length: 45mm (90mm - 35mm equiv.)
F No: f7.1
Shutter Speed: 1/1000 sec
Exposure Compensation: -0.3 EV
Image Stabilisation: On