AB Thinks  →  19th September 2016

On the buses: the story behind a photoshoot

Ciara O'Connor

I’ve always been interested in buses – I once got trapped in the luggage compartment of one, but that’s for another blog – so the opportunity to be part of Upfront’s July cover shoot at Stockwell Bus Garage excited me.

The story featured TfL’s Revenue Protection Inspectors (RPIs). After spending a day shadowing one across the capital, I learned there’s a lot more to the role than checking bus tickets, and if you struggle with nerves, it’s not the job for you.

Revenue protection is often considered a sober subject, so our designer Jenny wanted the cover to be animated and fun. And what could be more fun than a photoshoot on a brand new Routemaster bus? So off to Stockwell we went.

The garage is a Grade II* listed building and many people will recognise it from ITV’s The Secret Life of a Bus Garage. The team is used to dealing with visitors, which meant setting up was quick and seamless, and before we could say ‘all aboard’, a Routemaster was humming our way.

I didn’t think you could describe a bus as beautiful, but the new Routemaster is exactly that. It’s the perfect blend of old and new, and a fitting backdrop for the shoot.

With Jenny directing, photographer Dom Marley behind the lens, props in place and the help of a few AB and TfL ‘models’, we were ready for our close-up. AB’s Liam Garrahan handled the filming; click here to see how it went.