Illusions in Kentish Town

Last night I was adding photographs to my Lightroom Catalogue and typed in the keywords facade, illusion and reflection. I then found myself singing a phrase from Joni Mitchell’s Both Sides Now – the phrase was it’s cloud illusions I recall. Apologies to Joni if I have misconstrued her text but it was an involuntary association.

Here is a series of images taken in London’s Kentish Town that contain elements of reflection and illusion. The photographs are not constructed and are all single exposures. In a sense they are documentary landscapes but are very different to the cityscapes in my project Changing Views which is steeped in realism. Starting with the most recent image seen outside Superdrug on the high street, Kentish Town Road :

The following photographs also reflect the local architecture and share the motifs of found imagery, abstraction and signage. Below an image featuring the side of an 88 bus that was stuck in traffic on Highgate Road:

Advertising at Superdrug combined with reflected clouds, facades and lampposts create a surreal illusion on the high street:

A more painterly, autumnal illusion seen at the local MOT Centre, Darcars, on Highgate Road, whose cobbled entrance suggests a bygone era :

A couple of surreal landscapes taken by the Fortess Road Co-op convenience store:

The next two photographs were taken outside the Assembly House Pub at the junction of Kentish Town Road and Leighton Road:

I’m often drawn to these cherubs, etched into the glass window. That afternoon, I also liked seeing the birds on the roof of the structure seen in the reflected street:

And finally a couple of shots from my series Persian Kentish Town. The image below was taken in October 2021 outside Kasra Carpets on Highgate Road and is a street scene combines elements of architecture, textiles, patterned reflection and a passing 214 bus:

During lockdown earlier this year, I took a photograph of the illuminated, reflected landscape on a tapestry hanging in the security protected window of the Orientalist Rug showroom:

6 thoughts on “Illusions in Kentish Town”

  1. Hi Mish,
    Another stunning collection of images, I love the Persian carpet ones for the richness of their colours and textures but I’m most intrigued by the first photo of the eye and the clouds. Is this another bus window and sign reflection or what? The composition with the clouds almost appearing to overlap the face had me thinking composite or double exposure but no? Can you enlighten me?
    Many thanks

    • Hi Fran! So the first image was taken looking directly at a small section of a shop sign (the store is called Superdrug) where at that point in the day I noticed that clouds and buildings were prominently reflected, obscuring parts of the sign. Best wishes, Mish


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