A collection of my birthday presents

A Lovely But Wet Birthday

It My Life: Personal Stories

Yesterday was my birthday.  I’ve now turned into the last year of my forties!  Oh I’m getting old! Anyhow I was spoilt thoroughly, as some of the presents in the above photograph show.

The Vinyl List

For Christmas I got a record (vinyl) player, the first one I’ve had since the late 1980s (told you I was getting old!) so for my birthday I was treated to some of my favourite albums on vinyl:

Birthday card of London wedding photographer Darren Lehane

A birthday card I received! Yes it’s me too!

‘Violator’ by Depeche Mode, ‘Mezzanine’ by Massive Attack, ‘Dummy’ by Portishead and ‘Trouble Will Fine Me’ by The National. I’ve now decided I will start re-building a vinyl collection of all my all time favourite albums…it might be quite a list!

And if that didn’t prove I was old already, just look at this birthday card I received (to the left)!!! And yes, that is me…dressed up as Scary Goth from a Halloween a few years ago!

I also got the photography book “The Decisive Moment” by Henri Cartier-Bresson – one of the all time great photobooks. As a documentary wedding photography, Cartier-Bresson is one of my big influences…so it’s great to now have my hands on this fantastic re-print of the original (complete with the original Matisse designed cover!).

Some photos from The Decisive Moment by Henri Cartier-Bresson

Some photos from inside the Decisive Moment book by Henri Cartier-Bresson

British Film Institute Membership

As you may recall, from a previous post, about the film The Third Man, I absolutely love the British Film Institute (BFI) on London’s Southbank.  It’s a great place to catch re-runs of old films, especially long forgotten black and white film noir classics…again something which really inspires my wedding photojournalism style. Well, I was treated to a years membership to the BFI! So expect a few posts about visits to the BFI this year!

The Radical Eye

For the day itself, the weather wasn’t great. It was cold, grey and wet most of the day before we got some wet snow in the evening.  However, this didn’t deter me, so after a late brunch in town I was treated to a visit to the Tate Modern to see the The Radical Eye Exhibition – which is a collection of Sir Elton John’s private photography collection. Again, what else would you expect for a wedding photographer!

A sign about privacy on the viewing platform at the Tate Modern gallery in London

The viewing platform at the Tate Modern has caused privacy issues for local residents!

Also, whilst at the Tate, I visited the new viewing platform – which has some great views of across London, although it has caused problems for near residents with Tate visitors now able to see inside their homes!

Here are some more views from the viewing platform:

St Pauls Cathedral as viewed from the Tate Modern viewing platform in London.

View of St Pauls Cathedral from Tate Modern viewing platform

The Shard as viewed from the Tate Modern viewing platform in London.

Views of the Shard and London, as seen from the viewing platform at the Tate Modern

The shard as viewed from the Tate Modern viewing platform in London.

The Shard disappears into clouds on a bitingly cold and wet day

A man with umbrella, as viewed from the Tate Modern viewing platform in London.

Viewed from high up on the Tate Modern’s viewing platform, a brave soul soldiers on against the elements!

Fine Dining In Mayfair, London

In the evening I was taken to Benares – a fantastic Indian restaurant in the exclusive Mayfair!  It’s the only Indian restaurant with 2 Michelin stars in the UK and is a fantastic fine eating experience!  It was a truly lovely way to finish such a fantastic birthday!

You can read more of my non photography personal posts here in the It’s My Life series.


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