Lord Mayor's balloon regatta, 2019
Lord Mayor's balloon regatta, 2019
Lord Mayor's balloon regatta, 2019
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Lord Mayor's balloon regatta, 2019

Graeme Robertson


The Guardian photographer Graeme Robertson rose early last Sunday to photograph nearly 50 hot air balloons that took flight across London, as part of the fifth Lord Mayor’s Hot Air Balloon regatta. Robertson, who was photographing them from the basket of a balloon himself, took off from Battersea Park just after 5am, as the sun came up. “Once we’d passed the City, I knew I’d be able to turn back and shoot the balloons behind me, with the buildings reflecting the sunrise as a backdrop,” he says. He captured City airport in the foreground, and the O2 and Canary Wharf farther back. Robertson had time to shoot five frames before his balloon changed position, and the shot was gone.


Words: Hannah Booth


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