Last week I posted an image (click here to see it) of a new Shopping Mall, known as MK1 Shopping Park, on the southern edge of Milton Keynes, on Stadium Way near Stadium MK.

_DS77507_Sol2Click on any image in this post to see a higher quality enlargement.

Two of the visual delights, for a photographer, of a well-designed modern building are firstly how light impacts upon it, and secondly how light creates interaction, or interplay, either with neighbouring buildings, or within the structure of the building itself, or sometimes both.

_DS77519_4See this mall on a dull overcast day and it may make little impact on you. See it on a day of bright sun and blue sky – preferably, as I did, in late September when the sun is not too high in the sky – and I defy any photographer not to see the potential for images that are almost everywhere you care to look.

_DS77527_SolThe sun shines through the high, slatted portico casting alternating bands of shadow and light onto walls and floor. The paneled walls add their own contrasting contribution through strong geometric lines. And then there are the semi-abstract rippled reflections of light and shade thanks to the extensive use of reflective float glass.

_DS77511_final2All the images you see here were captured in the space of fourteen minutes while my wife did a little shopping. It was fourteen minutes of sheer joy for me.

_DS77523And it has resulted in a few sessions of highly enjoyable processing work in CS5, with help from Topaz plug-ins – Adjust, Clean and Detail. I am becoming an enthusiastic user of Topaz Clean for the way, if used carefully, that it simplifies line, and removes minor detailing thereby concentrating the eye on the geometry and design. In addition I used a selective Colour Solarization + Inversion to enliven the sky in a couple of images.

_DS77509_postSol_finalAs a result, some of what you see is unashamedly more graphic illustration than straight photography. I’m happy to hold my hand up to that and say that I think the result of that approach enhances the design’s properties rather than detracts from it.

_DS77531The Architects – q2 Architects – deserve a mention for what at first glance may appear to be a relatively simple design, but one that reveals itself as a first class example of how a clever design not only delivers a well-crafted functional building but creates – given the right weather  – a genuinely moving artistic installation.

_DS77529The only pity is that so many of those who visit, will swivel their eyes at eye level or below, and so intent will they be on their retail therapy, that they will be oblivious of the visual spectacle above their heads.

There should be a sign saying: Look Up!

Are you a lover of Modern Architecture? Do make a comment if you enjoy today’s selection of images.

About LensScaper

Hi - I'm a UK-based photographer who started out 45+ years ago as a lover of landscapes, inspired by my love of outdoor pursuits: skiing, walking and climbing. Now retired, I seldom leave home without a camera and I find images in unexpected places and from different genres. I work on the premise that Photography is Art and that creativity is dependent on the cultivation of 'A Seeing Eye'.
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23 Responses to Interplay

  1. Jim Denham says:

    Great lines/geometry! Nicely seen and photographed!


  2. Len Saltiel says:

    The lines and play of light and shadow are killer Andy. You have taken some terrific photos here.


  3. oneowner says:

    I love the graphic nature of these, Andy. The idea behind photos like this is that they isolates a small portion of the building and forces us to look at the color, light, shadow and design as something separate from the whole. They are tributes to the architect and the photographer, as well.


  4. munchow says:

    A great way to play with forms and lines. You have a great eye for both details and composition. My favourite is the one with the reflection of the mannequin dolls.


    • LensScaper says:

      Thanks Munchow. Yes, the one with the mannequin dolls particularly appealed to me too. Tricky to process to bring out enough detail in them for them to be recognizable.


  5. Andy – these shots are all very nice. I am a fan of the interplay of light and shadow, and you’ve done a great job of showing the beauty that’s there. You are probably right that most visitors to the building miss what you’ve captured, but for those who DO look up – what a treat!


  6. These are terrific Andy. You’re right the interplay of light, lines and shadows are awesome.


  7. Helen Cherry says:

    I am always walking about looking up ! I love these Andy.. great job


  8. mark says:

    What a great, great set. The shadows and lines are wonderful, but the images that add the reflective element really stand out.


    • LensScaper says:

      Thanks Mark. This was a brilliant environment to photograph as you will have realized from the text of the post. I really liked that Fisheye shot of yours featuring the Apple logo. The world would be far poorer place without reflections.


  9. ehpem says:

    Wow – that second shot totally turns my crank!


    • LensScaper says:

      Thanks Ehpem. It’s the same wall, as you will I am sure have guessed, that featured in the image of the tree and the wall in the previous week.Amazing lines for sure.


  10. ShimonZ says:

    Enjoyed your photography here… and especially the way the blue came out, together with the light and shadow.


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