Archive for November, 2011

Windland Smith Rice Awards 2011

Wednesday, November 23rd, 2011

I’m delighted to announce that I have received a Highly Honoured award in the African Wildlife category of this year’s Nature’s Best Windland Smith Rice Awards. The image was taken in The Karoo, South Africa. It shows the distinctive silhouette of a lone Kudu Bull standing on a cliff edge as an electrical storm rolls in overhead.

The Lake District

Thursday, November 17th, 2011

I spent 3 days in The Lakes the other week for a 2020vision assignment. This was a landscape commission so I timed it to coincide with the best of the Autumn colours. Unfortunately, although the colours were splendid, in terms of light quality, luck wasn’t on my side, or at least for the last two days. I had planned a trip into the mountains on the first day and hiked to the summit of Haystacks crossing Blackbeck Tarn on the way. The sun did peep out for a brief few moments, which saw me desperately racing around trying to compose a shot before the magic was lost. By the time I reached the summit some four hours later, however, black clouds loomed overhead so after taking some shots from the top I started to make my way back. By this time the light was fading fast and I had to make the rest of the descent in the pitch black using a head torch as my only source of light whilst trying to remember the landmarks that I had passed. This in itself proved interesting!

The second and third day saw the weather take a turn for the worse. I didn’t see a single hint of sunlight for the rest of the trip so rather than go for the big vistas I concentrated on waterfalls. The Lakes have a number of spectacular waterfalls and I worked from dawn until dusk (which at this time of year still doesn’t give you much time!) in an attempt to cram in as much as possible. Out of the falls I visited, my favourite was Scale Force. With a drop of 170 feet it is the highest in the Lakes, but its situation is even more impressive. It isn’t particularly easy to find and is a good 45 minute walk from the nearest car park. It also remains completely hidden from view until you are almost on top of it. The water falls through a deep tree-lined chasm in the rock which is incredibly narrow and I suspect doesn’t see any natural light, even during the height of summer. There are two main tiers, the second of which required a rather desperate climb up 10 foot of wet and slimy rock. Not particularly easy with hiking boots on and a camera bag and tripod strapped to your back!

Here’s a selection of images from the trip. A more detailed account will be going on the 2020vision blog so be sure to keep a look out!

Cloud inversions

Thursday, November 17th, 2011

Without doubt, my favourite conditions for landscape photography are when cloud inversions occur. This wether phenomenon usually happens following a cold but clear night, when the air becomes warmer with altitude – a direct reversal of normal temperature conditions. During a spell of cold weather the other week, I hedged my bets and climbed to the summit of Mam Tor for first light, and what a morning it was! It is an amazing feeling to be completely above the clouds and the photographic opportunities it provides are endless.

As the clouds traversed the sky the landscape was constantly changing. Peaks and hills appeared one minute and disappeared the next, allowing for  variety of images to be taken just seconds apart.

National Forest

Tuesday, November 1st, 2011

I’ve been incredibly busy recently so must apologise for the lack of posts. I’ve had lots of commissioned work on, and since the recent house move I’m just getting back into the swing of things with plenty of planned shoots coming up. I’ve also been working feverishly updating my collection of Peak District landscapes – but more of that later!

Some of my recent commissions have been for 2020vision. I did an extra day in the National Forest last week, and although the autumn colours weren’t quite at their best, I still came back with some pleasing images. For the first hour of light I concentrated on landcapes and then moved to a lovely area of woodland known as ‘Outwoods’ to capture shots of people. Here is a taster…