Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Lake District - Day 2

As expected, woke up to a rather miserable morning, so didn’t rush out. After breakfast I headed over to the southern end of Derwentwater, to the boardwalk that traverses the marshy perimeter of that part of the lake, with a view to have a bit of a walk and take a few snaps. My ever present friend, the howling wind, accompanied me on my travels and did its very best to blow me from the boardwalk into the brackish water below. But it did not succeed, and I held strong in the face of such gusty disorder.

The sun began to make a few tentative appearances as I approached the western shoreline, so I stopped and pitched my tripod to enable some shots of the foreground lake with Catbells, one of the most popular fells around Derwentwater, rising grandly behind. I ended up staying there for quite a while waiting for the light to be compliant enough for me to get what I wanted, which was to be a recurring theme for quite a lot of the week.

Despite a wobbling tripod I managed to get an image with the sun dappling across the fells

Monday, April 29, 2013

Lake District - Day 1

After travelling up to Keswick, in the Lake District the evening before, I was ready to get cracking first thing. Unfortunately the weather was acting rather belligerently, a dismal, funereal procession of unrelenting grey, shoving spluttering rain and pin sharp gales in the face of anyone who would be foolish enough to venture out. 

Needless to say, sunrise was off the cards. So with a heavy heart and modest relief, I hastened back to bed with a view to humoring my shameful laziness. So after a leisurely breakfast I headed out around 11.30, once the worst of the weather had sodded off. My first stop was Buttermere, in my view one of the prettier lakes in the area.

But wait I hear you shriek, Buttermere, is in fact a mere, not a lake, hence Buttermere. There is only one true lake in the Lake District, and that is Bassenthwaite Lake, the rest are either, meres, waters, or in the case of the smaller bodies, tarns. Yes, well done, you are absolutely correct to make that statement with the force and clarity it warranted. Now we have that settled, let us move on and never mention it again.

Once parked in the approved parking area at the northern tip of the mere, not lake (yes I lied, I will be mentioning it. A lot), I made my way to the nearest shoreline where I had a date with a rather scrawny tree. I had seen pictures of this particular specimen before, but never had the pleasure of its company. I was about to rectify that. 

The light was pretty flat so I have processed it with a toned monochrome
effect as the colours were nothing to write home about

Sunday, April 28, 2013

A Day at Silverstone

Slightly departure from the usual posts, I spent the day at Silverstone on Sunday watching the start of this years Formula 4 season, and had a rather cracking day out.

The series was originally operated by the 750 Motor Club along the Formula Vee series as an entry level single seater formula for young drivers. In September 2012, it was announced that the "Formula 4" name would be passed onto MotorSport Vision and the British Racing Drivers' Club to create a new Formula 4 Championship. The championship features a mix of professional motor racing teams and privately funded drivers using identical 2.0-litre cars built by Ralph Firman's RFR company.

To start with though there was a bit of Caterham action.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

The Puddle That Stays With Me, Always

I took a little jaunt into the Cotswolds the other day and, inspired by the images of reeds and water I took a few days previously, whilst I was in Widford I forsook the natural beauty of the surrounding wolds and valleys, and found myself a nice big puddle to settle down with. 

And I have to say, our time together was some of the best of my entire life. We talked and laughed and dreamed our dreams, it was as if time had stood still for us. But as with all things, nothing can last forever, so in the end I had to say goodbye and move on with my life, plus I had to get home for my tea, it was fish fingers and spaghetti that evening, and I wasn’t about to miss it.

But I can’t seem forget that puddle, and something tells me I never will.

At least I have the memories…

Monday, April 15, 2013

Reeds, Water & A Long Exposure

I took a recent excursion to a local fishing lake to get some watery shots and I liked it so much, that I had to go back again. This time though the weather wasn't in cahoots with my intentions, so my attempts at apprehending the setting sun and incarcerating it in my digital casket did not go to plan. That wily old sun. 

But as I was making my way out through the undergrowth I came across some reeds that caught my fancy. There was a bit of breeze about the place which didn't look too good on the water surface, so I set up my ever dependable tripod and prepared for some long exposures.

I wanted the surface of the water to be as smooth as possible so I did what I could to minimise the amount of light that was able to enter the lens, thereby extending the exposure as much as I could. This would dissipate the ripples, as they would all blur into each other, thus creating the illusion of a smooth finish, ideally.

I did this by closing the apperture to f/22 and bringing down the ISO to 50, or L as it's known on my camera. I would normally do neither of these things, as they each result in a loss of picture quality, but I decided the ends justified the means. Nothing was going to deter me from my plotted course.


f/22, ISO 50, 6 second exposure

Saturday, April 13, 2013

I visited a local fishing lake recently but I didn't want to go fishing.

I will admit though that I had a private, urgent need that required satisfaction. And yet, I didn't have the slightest desire to stand, tackle in hand, on the banks of this great pond and while away the hours tugging on my rod (And no, it is not wile). So now we have cleared that up, as many an angler has had to do. I will admit that my great need was to get some images of water.

You know how you might get a hankering for a certain type of food all of a sudden, and nothing will make it go away until that craving for a century egg or Casu Marzu or whatever floats your boat is satiated. Well that is the position I found myself in. I wanted some reflections and I wanted them right away.

So I headed to the aforementioned fishing lake at sundown to see what I could find and I was pleasantly surprised. The sun for its part was ‘playing the game’ and I managed to get a few nice shots in the bag. Nothing earth shattering, but they gratified the flustering urge that had been growing inside me.

And after that lazy sun had slumped beneath the horizon, I sauntered past the fishermen, still grappling with their wet flies and wooly worms, with many pleasing thoughts filling my contented mind.

As the sun was saying goodbye it deposited some golden tones
on the blue/grey lake which worked well.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

The Cotswolds on a sunny afternoon in Spring

It’s been quite a while since I last posted, mainly due to malaise, and the fact that it’s been a while since I last picked up my camera, predominantly for the same reasons.

But the guilt of having an expensive piece of machinery sat about gathering dust, along with a low hanging chimerical smear of cloud gently, but insistently draping a curtain of shame over the back of my mind for not ‘getting out there’ and ‘capturing the light’ etc etc, ad nauseum, was enough to spur me to action.

So action is what happened.

I took an action packed trip up the road and got some pictures my local area, so here they are, with a bit of info culled from various tourist sites about the Cotswolds.

“The Cotswolds is the most 'quintessentially English' and unspoiled region of England where you cannot help but fall in love with the uniqueness of it.”