Tuesday, 22 March 2011

Day 2 in the Lakes

Day 2 and it was dry all day except for a bit of Scotch mist (yes, even in the English Lake District) as we walked back from the pub tonight.

It was a coast day for us and we started at Drigg near high tide. Lots of wave action to capture as well as patterns and shapes at the edge of the dunes. Andrew also found a large jelly fish high and dry above the high tide line.

From here we moved on to Saltcoats. The track to Ravenglass and all of the mudflats here were under deep water so we were unable to walk to Ravenglass. Instead we had to drive round to Ravenglass and walk back across the footbridge towards Saltcoats as far as the tide would allow (not far!). Then into Ravenglass before heading to the Ratty Arms pub for lunch.

After lunch it was down to Eskmeals for more beach shots before driving up to St Bees Head for some rock shots.

After returning to Stanley House and a quick wash and brush up we had a Photoshop session before going out for dinner in Boot.

Very little sunshine but still lots of good shots. The forecast for tomorrow is good so we are going to Wasdale. Fingers crossed for good views and sunshine.

Sunday, 20 March 2011

Damp Day in the Lake District

Today was the first day of the Landscape Photography course in the Lake District. It was a bit damp all day.

We spent the morning in Eskdale photographing waterfalls and shapes and patterns in and around the river. Lots of rocks too.

After lunch we headed up to Hardknott Fort. The clouds were too low to go higher up the pass but it was quite atmospheric around the fort. It was wet here and David's camera stopped working. Fortunately, once the lens contacts were dried out it worked fine, which was a big relief!

Then up to Devoke Water for moody shots of the boat house in the mist and quite heavy rain.

Not the best weather we could have had but some good photographs were taken through the day.

Saturday, 19 March 2011

Landscape Photography Course in the Lake District

We are in the Lake District heading for Stanley House b&b in Boot in Eskdale, where we are based while running a landscape photography course.

The forecast is for sunshine and showers which would be great for interesting skies, although a bit damp for us.

Tonight we will have dinner at the Strands Hotel in Nether Wasdale. This is a brewery too and the Terminator is one of my favourites. Hope it's on!

After that we have the welcome meeting back at base with all of the photographers on the course.

Sunday, 6 March 2011

London Photography Trip Completed

Our 3 days in London taking photographs are over and we are driving back up the M1 to Derbyshire.

We covered a lot of ground, walking everywhere. I have lots of shots of places not previously included in my web library. I took 35 rolls (10 shots per film) and will have Ilford Lab Direct process them to save me a day.

Had a bit of rain last night so unsure how pictures will come out. The shots needed the camera lens pointing up as rain was falling so with up to 40 second exposures the image may be soft or distorted. Shame as it was around the striking Gherkin and Lloyds buildings. Also took Leadenhall Market but this should be fine as under cover.

Some shots impossible because of various obstructions like building work in Piccadilly Circus, Leicester Square, Albert Bridge, near Big Ben, the Victoria roundabout outside Buckingham Palace, Trafalgar Square and a host of other places. If they ever finish it I'm sure it will be fine!

Unspectacular lighting today but managed a few new locations. These included Cleopatra's Needle, Westminster Abbey, Admiralty Arch, Burlington Arcade, Lincolns Inn and some old style phone boxes grouped together.

One thing is for sure, it has become much more difficult taking pictures in London if you intend to try and sell them. You need permission or a permit in so many places. Some of these cost money which a freelance like me can't afford.

The restrictions also have an impact on the historical record; I'm taking photographs on archival silver gelatin film to make traditional prints that could last for hundreds of years but I haven't been able to take the shots so the records will have a bias to personal snapshots which are not restricted in these locations, assuming they are archived at all.

The other problem is that it isn't obvious who to ask for permission even when I want to. At City Hall the very helpful security manager explained that there were 4 or 5 different organisations to ask around there and the boundaries between them all is not obvious.

Take me back to the hills, I mostly know what I can do there!

Saturday, 5 March 2011

London Photography Weekend

We are in the Prince Albert a couple of hundred yards south of the Albert Bridge, opposite Battersea Park in London. The Good Old Boy beer is going down quite well; just waiting for the second pint to arrive.

Took lots of shots yesterday from Southwark to Canary Wharf. Included Millenium footbridge, St Pauls from river, Tower Bridge, Shad Thames, etc. Didn't quite make it to Greenwich before light went.

Tried to take photos at New City Hall of the striking building shapes but was stopped by security. Fortunately, he offered to take me to Security to get formal permission to take photos there. Couldn't sort as didn't have my public liability insurance docs but will do when get home so can use the 2 shots I did take before being stopped and go back for more later in year.

We walked a lot of the Thames Path but retired to Wetherspoons for quick bite to eat and a pint before starting the night shots with Tower Bridge. Then on to Globe Theatre and Millenium footbridge.

The day ended at 9.30pm at the hotel in Southwark, a long day with a lot of walking as I was up at 4.30am to catch 6.30 train from Macclesfield to London.

Today we headed west along the Thames, taking the Oxo Tower first of all then the Golden Jubilee Pedestrian bridges (great cables!) at Hungerford Bridge, the London Eye, Big Ben, Houses of Parliament, the MI6 building, Battersea Power Station, Chelsea and Albert Bridges.

The Albert Bridge was top of my shooting list as I have been asked several times for photos of it but it's being refurbished so looks a real mess. Guess we will have to come back for that one.

Sun's out. Must dash.