Darwin enlightenment

In this second post of the category “Behind the shot”, I want to describe what led me to shoot the photo “Darwin enlightenment”. In Semptember 2011 I spent some days in London and, in the short time I had available, I tried to view as many things as possibile. In my “Classic tourist” trip I’ve included the Natural History Museum, in Kensington.

The beautiful roman/victorian style building houses an incredible number of pavilions which expound the history of our planet and the evolution of all the living species. Visiting the whole museum in half a day is really hard; moreover, in September 15th 2009, the “Cocoon” has been inaugurated: it is a huge and super-modern brand new pavilion which contains the Darwin Centre, not to be missed.

The tour of the museum led me to shoot the photo that, in my opinion, better represents the meaning of everything discoverable in that place. I intended to honor the figure of Charles Darwin, depicting him as the keystone af all the modern natural sciences. With this in my mind, I’ve patiently waited for the right moment: the weather that day was quite cloudy, but occasionally some rays of sun beautifully enlightened the museum’s central hall. However it was really difficult to make the right light and a clean frame correspond, because hundreds of people were walking up and down on that staircase pausing, in addition, to read the guides and make photos. After quite a long waiting, I finally shot the picture I imagined: Darwin, enlightened and made immortal by his theory of evolution, is saluted by the modern man with a sort of reverent bowing.

Darwin, London, Natural History Museum

To be sure to avoid a blurred frame, I’ve risen the ISO up to a value of 800, confident in K-5’s ever-clean output. Doing so I shot at 1/640s using the focal lenght and aperture value that fall in the “sweet spot” of the Pentax smc DA 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 ED AL IF DC WR lens.

I hope that this narration held your interest and, if you like, I wait for you in the next “Behind the shot” storytelling, appreciating your comments.

About Claudio Beffa

I'm an Italian photographer and designer with a great passion for the discovery of amazing places and their history and soul. With phoclab.com, I'll tell you every step of my journey and I'll show you my best travel & landscape shots.

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