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Tag Archives: Gas Street Basin

Gas Street Basin

Now I am back in a work routine, I take the opportunity to park in the city around 7am and stay until 8am just before the car parking charging begins.  I set myself an area to walk around and aim to come away with 4 to 5 pictures that I can use over the coming days.  These may be for my 365 project or pictures that I can post onto Twitter and Instagram.  Gas street basin is a changing place and there is always something to photography during a walk on the tow paths.  On this visit, it was very still and quiet and there was a hint of mist.  The water in the canal was so still that it provided perfect reflections for my photography.  I had my trusty Canon 5D mark VI and my ‘go to’ lens EF24-70mm with me.  Initially I did not think I would get particularly good photographs but then as I got down low I started to see the photographic possibilities.   

Reflections in Gas Street
The still waters reflect the buildings of Gas Street Basin.
Birmingham - new vs old
Showing the new versus the old in Birmingham
Gas Street Sunrise
Golden buildings in the sunrise

With the reflections of the buildings, I saw that there were many different views.  I took around 20 to 30 pictures and then carefully selected around 6 photographs.  A selection of 4 posted on Twitter took off with many likes. At the last count it was over 20 thousand views.   I see so many excellent pictures of Birmingham and I am not here to say that mine are any better.  These pictures are my own personal view of the area and I am pleased that they make people happy.

Brindley Place
Venturing into Brindley Place for the reflections of the canal waters

Having done Digbeth, I felt brave enough to go into Birmingham again and look around both Gas Street Basin and Centenary Square.  My first difficulty was parking as car parks and on street spaces were either shut or there were traffic cones preventing you from parking.  I found a place and wandered down into gas street.  What I noticed was how many runners there were out and about plus cyclists using the tow path.  It is wide enough to do social distancing and it was being patrolled by two police officers as well.  

Some parts are locked up
The basin is still colourful
Many runners around

After Gas Street I went to Centenary Square and I had brought along my lensball as I thought it might give me some different and creative photography.  Sometimes the lensball is frustrating as it just does not add anything more to the picture.  In this situation, the shallow pool of water allowed you to place the crystal at the water’s edge and then lie low to line up a picture.  I was pleased with the result and it was well received on the social media.  I also noticed that whilst Broad Street is undergoing changes for the metro tram, there are social distancing notices all over the pavement.  The virus is still around and although walking around the streets of Birmingham has a normality about it, you do realise that we are sill in a state of crisis.

Work on the tram makes for lockdown pictures of the Library
The lensball likes being reflected
When will the Rep open for performances?
Centenary Square is quiet
Evidence of neglect on Broad Street
Changes and more Changes on Broad Street
It is a difference world
Social distancing on Broad Street

This series of pictures features Birmingham centre just after the clocks have gone back. Why is this so important. Sunrise for the next couple of weeks is around 7 am and that is the time that I get into Birmingham. When I took these pictures, I did not have any theme attached to them as I just felt like I needed to stroll around the city and see what is happening.

A lone figure in Victoria Square

There is a fair amount of change happening around Birmingham. This includes the next phase of the Metro tram linking up between Grand Central and Broad Street. There are also many new buildings going up around Chamberlain Square. So many changes happening. I then moved onto Gas Street Basin and caught the light from the early morning sun.

The view to Centennial Square with a lone figure

It was only when I reviewed the pictures that I noticed a figure in each of the pictures. Maybe it is the same person that was following me around the city as I was taking photographs. Whoever he/she or they were, they do add a point of interest and a story to the pictures.

Looking towards the mailbox with a lone figure
Looking towards the sunrise

St Paul’s Spire between the trees

A few views of St Paul’s Church, Gas Street Basin, the Library and the Cube.  The sunlight always gives the local landmarks an added boost.

Light, leaves and windows.

St Paul’s Spire in the trees

Sun flare over the long boats

Early commuters with the reflections in the water

The Library reflected in the International Convention Centre’s windows

A favourite picture of mine with the Cube in the background and the boats arrange in an arrowhead point to the distance.

Early worker getting his long boat ready for the day

It is cold in January and as I was in the City for an evening meal, I took the opportunity to take a few pictures around Gas Street Basin and Brindley Place in Birmingham City Centre.  In a highly photographed area of the City, it is a challenge to take pictures that offer a different perspective of the area.  As I wandered around I did not realise how cold it was and it reminded me to get some special gloves that cover the hands but allow you to use the camera controls.  When I got to meet everyone in the restaurant, my hands hurt as the blood began to recirculate.  At least I had some pictures to look back on and some of them looked worthy for entry into my blog.  The majority of the pictures were done on a manual setting and I used railings and walls as my tripod.  It is difficult to balance the bright neon lights and some of the pictures were cropped to remove the distracting glare.  I enjoy night shooting in the city and I will miss the shortened days as spring is around the corner.

Broad St Canal Tunnel

Window patterns over the Broad St tunnel

Strolling and Cycling along the canal

Colours of the Mailbox

Brindley Place

Towpath to the Mailbox

Neon lights the way

Reflections

Under Broad Street

The canal system around Birmingham provides terrific photographic opportunities.  If you have the combination of a nice day and the time to wander along the canal network with your camera then there are few places that can match the views that you can find.  Here is an early Monday morning walk along the Canal Network.  Thank you to the West Midlands Branch of the Canal and River Trust for their work in maintaining our canal network.