There's something about neon signs. I snapped this one on Friday night inside the Soho Pizzeria in Beak Street, where you can eat American Hots whilst listening to hot Americans or a silky girl leaning-up against a grand piano. Or the silky girl sitting opposite you. Just the right medium for the legend 'Live Music'. The sign reminded me of the neon we saw all over London at one time; the imaginative use of it on Piccadilly Circus instead of the current blanket coverage that makes it look like Tokyo. I remember standing by Eros and staring up at the Guinness clock with a moving pendulum, signs for Wrigley's, Bovril and Schweppes Tonic Water. And further out from the nightlife dazzle, the gable ends of London telling us repeatedly to 'Take Courage', a message that I once liberally took to heart. By the look of the London skyline at night, say from a railway carriage, there's still a few old but bright words out in the dark, maybe with a dead letter here and there. Still flickering to life whenever the lights are put on, but completely forgotten by current occupants and bill-payers. Do they use much electricity, or is it negligible like fridges, or my outside lightbulb I keep forgetting to switch off? Cue eco warriors.
I am a designer, writer and photographer who spends all his time looking at England, particularly buildings and the countryside. But I have a leaning towards the slightly odd and neglected, the unsung elements that make England such an interesting place to live in. I am the author and photographer of over 25 books, in particular Unmitigated England (Adelphi 2006), More from Unmitigated England (Adelphi 2007), Cross Country (Wiley 2011), The Cigarette Papers (Frances Lincoln 2012), Preposterous Erections (Frances Lincoln 2012) and English Allsorts (Adelphi 2015)