Built Environment

Photography - Cityscape

Cityscape header (c) Robert J.E. Simpson 2008
Defender of London
(Trafalgar Square, London, 2009)
(Nov 2004)

Oberkampf is the area of Paris in the 11th Arrondissement where I stay when I'm in the city. Its become something of a second home - a bustling area of city and close to so much varied life. This image was from the attic apartment I took in November 2004. There's a real sense of the scale of the Parisian buildings, and you can see all the way along the Rue d'Oberkampf past the bustling cafes and bars. A solid image that holds special affection for me.

Oberkampf, Paris Nov 2004. Image (c) RJE Simpson 2006. All Rights Reserved
(March 2005)

Walking back along the Seine I was struck by this view of the Eiffle Tower and the bright neon lights promoting Paris (failed) bid for the 2012 Olympics. You couldn't move for adverts and support for the bid in the city. I really expected them to get it. The camera was placed on a wall and let to run a long exposure in order to catch the detail and colours. You can clearly see the light from the top of the tower, and the neon's have strangely been reflected in mid air and upside down on the negative.

"Paris2012". Image (c) Robert J.E. Simpson 2006
Belfast by Night
(December 2008)

Despite living in Belfast nearly all my life, I've never really thought of it as a city. It just lacks the scale for me, and yet, there's something rather beautiful and city-like when you see it from a vantage point like this - all lit up.

This was taken from the top of the library tower at Queen's University, looking over the old library building north.


"Belfast by Night" (c) Robert J.E. Simpson 2008. All Rights Reserved.
(April 2003)

In 2003 I made two lengthy visits to the the empty Harland and Wolffe shipyard in my hometown of Belfast. Feet away from this location the Titanic was built nearly 100 years ago. Nearly everyone in Northern Ireland has some sort of ancestor who connects them to the shipyard. Nearly everyone in Belfast has some connection to the Tititanic.

This blow up from a contact print (over 300 frames are yet to be  printed up from the sessions) is taken between the famous yellow cranes of the yard - Samson and Goliath. Typically for Belfast it was raining...

H&W2. Image (c) Robert J.E. Simpson 2006. All Rights Reserved
(April 2003)

During one of my visits to the Harland and Wolffe yard I took a number of rolls in and around the vast empty warehouses that once resounded with the sounds of industry. Eerie, empty places now, they remind me of something better suited to an Eisenstein film.

"H&W". Image (c) 2006. Robert J.E. Simpson. All Rights Reserved
(April 2003)

Another in the long series of Harland and Wolffe frames taken in one of the vast empty warehouses that stands on the old shipyard site in Belfast harbour. Eerie and haunting, in the half-light the structures have an ominous, yet warm and almost inviting feel.

This image is all about the silhouette, pure black and whites, and geometry and perspective.

(April, 2003)

More of the industrial relics at Harland and Wolff, Belfast.


H&W4 (c) Robert J.E. Simpson 2008. All Rights Reserved.
Cog in the Machine
(April, 2003)

A glimpse into the industrial past of Belfast at the Harland and Wolff ship yard.

I used this image for the cover of a compilation cd (a homage to the old mix tapes) for friends a while back.


Cog in the Machine. (c) Robert J.E. Simpson 2008. All Rights Reserved.
Hyde Park Fair
(November 2008)

Walking through Hyde Park in London, I stumbled upon the Winter Wonderland fairground. A delightful display of neon and carnival attractions.

This shot captures the big wheel (which I sadly didn't ride) and in the foreground a man on a bungee cable inside what can only be the leftovers of the Crystal Maze set.


Hyde Park Fair. (c) Robert J.E. Simpson 2008. All Rights Reserved
Eye on London
(March 2006)

The first of several images from my March 2006 trip to London. Woody Allen was right about the British weather being so great - the overcast conditions can provide great dynamic images such as this one. Colour photos just don't do it justice.

The London Eye has established itself as one of the great new London landmarks, situated on the South Bank.

"Eye on London". Image (c) Robert J.E. Simpson 2006. All Rights Reserved
(March 2006)

The famous London skyline at Westminster Bridge has been etched into my mind for its iconic use in Doctor Who. Every trip I make, I find an excuse to look over at parliament. Never any Daleks though...

I took this in the middle of a busy Wednesday afternoon, but you wouldn't know it. I found the five second gap between the traffic.

This one is for my brother...

"London". Image (c) Robert J.E. Simpson 2006. All Rights Reserved