After my stroll around Liverpool’s Anglican Cathedral yesterday, today was the day for my photography workshop with Astrid McGechan and Charlie Waite. Our meeting point was the city’s Metropolitan Cathedral, which gave me a good chance to compare the architecture of the two buildings.
Both Cathedrals were built during the twentieth century, but they couldn’t be more different from each other. The Metropolitan Cathedral was completed in 1967, ultimately a combination of the work of two very different architects. The crypt was designed by Sir Edwin Lutyens and would have provided the basis or a truly epic building. Sadly, we couldn’t get into the crypt today as it’s being used for university exams, but that gives me an excused return sometime!
During the privations of World War II it became clear that Lutyens design was going to be too expensive and work stopped. In 1962 work finally restarted to create a new design by Sir Frederick Gibberd. This design is circular in shape, so every member of the congregation can see a clear view of the altar. The central tower is the focal point of the Cathedral, surrounded by thirteen smaller chapels.
During our visit on the workshop I only had an hour or so to explore, so I focused on sections of the Cathedral, and interesting details which caught my eye. The light coming through the stained glass was beautiful, although I understand it’s even more spectacular when the sun is shining.
Outside, we looked for more abstract details among the buttresses and stonework. Charlie suggested we try shooting some ‘companion pieces’ and I ended up with a satisfying collection of studies in line and form.
The following day I returned to the Cathedral to explore further and to shoot some wider images of the interior. The small coloured stained-glass windows create beautiful light in the smaller chapels, and I left feeling I’d done my best to capture this unusual building.
2 May 2019