Capturing the Anticipation: A Photographic Journey Leading Up to the Coronation

United Kingdom Aug 21, 2023

What is this post all about?

On Saturday, the 6th of May 2023, a historic event unfolded as Charles III and his wife, Camilla, were crowned king and queen of the United Kingdom at Westminster Abbey in London. Naturally, as a photographer, I couldn't miss the opportunity to document this historic event.

However, being neither a royal photographer nor a journalist, and with no desire to spend hours jostling amidst a massive crowd, I decided to take a different approach.

I focused on the anticipation and excitement in the days leading up to the coronation. To be precise, I focused on documenting the people and royal fans waiting days ahead of the event along The Mall near Buckingham Palace.

Thursday - Two Days Before the Coronation

On Thursday evening, I decided to take a train to London Waterloo for a little evening stroll along the riverbank. However, during my train journey, I scrolled through Instagram and already spotted some nice pictures of people camping and waiting along The Mall two days ahead of the event. So, after arriving at London Waterloo, I switched plans and started walking towards Buckingham Palace.

The weather and evening light were beautiful, so I was eager to document the people preparing for the two days waiting ahead of them. When I arrived at The Mall, I was greeted by people in party mood, camping chairs, tents and lots(!) of Union Jacks.

It wasn't too crowded, and the atmosphere was super relaxed. I had a nice chat with a few people and spent quite a bit of time walking up and down along The Mall.

This day I had the Lumix S5II with the Lumix 20-60 mm and the Lumix 50 mm f/1.8 with me. I used the Lumix for taking photos and videos.

Friday - One Day Before the Coronation

Friday, I arrived around 4pm at London Waterloo, and it was an entirely different vibe than the day before. I walked across Westminster Bridge to Parliament Street and everything was already super busy. Even along Parliament St., people were waiting on camping chairs for the big event that was going to happen in more than 18 hours.

As the sun was setting, clouds rolled in, and it started to rain.

This day I had a tad more equipment with me. As my main photo setup, I took the Nikon Z6 along with the Nikkor 85mm f/1.8 and the Tamron 70-200mm f/2.8 G2 with me. Furthermore, I had the Lumix S5II with the Lumix 20-60 mm and the Lumix 50 mm f/1.8 for video with me.

Saturday - The Aftermath

I'm not really sure what to say about those pictures and the aftermath of all the people and tents... so I decided to let the pictures speak.

Cheers! - Jan


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