Image and Reality at Pembroke: No.1 - The Library Tower

The first of Oscar Ridout’s guide to the best spots to Instagram in college

Pembroke is an undeniably beautiful college. With its open, rambling layout, architectural variety and abundant verdure, it offers the aesthetically-inclined student (read: me) endless opportunity for creative expression (read: vain quests for validation through likes, combined with procrastination.) In this column I’ll be evaluating those little corners of college that make for quality content (and double-tap endorphins.)

No. 1 - The Library Tower

Perfect for maintaining that studious façade without even having to go into the library, a well-composed shot of Waterhouse’s monumental clocktower is a sure- fire hit. A classic angle would be one from beside chapel, to capture the angular ornamentation and the play of sunlight across the building – see Wallis Power (@ wallis_p_) and Aran Macfarlane (@aran__macfarlane) for inspiration! These two images also evidence the variety of lighting conditions (or filters) which can give very different auras to the image.

For an extra touch of excitement, some lucky people have the opportunity to frame the tower in their window. As well as demonstrating their prime locations (questionably) in Red Building or Old Court, this gives the clear impression of a studious type – “I sit at my desk doing my work with the watchful eye of the library clock maintaining my focus”. See Phoebe Flatau (@phoebeflatau) for

this. It also serves the purpose of reminding the rest of college that Red Building exists. Alternatively, viewed at a distance as in my (@oscarrid0ut) window pic, the tower becomes just a part of the backdrop – much as it is in my life, as evidenced also by the achingly busy to-do list on my whiteboard.

Finally, a rogue entry from Megan Thomson (@megancthomson) with her end-on view, which is a surprising hit with me. The sunlight gives warmth to the image, and the whole building seems far less intimidating viewed from its short side, with the amenable lawns of Red Building in the foreground softening the composition.

Waterhouse’s grand library may be more important to some of us than to others, but it’s a vital part of any Pembroke Instagrammer’s online persona. •

Oscar Ridout is a first year musician and Pembroke Street’s Instagrammer