My local Nottinghamshire landscape isn’t the most exciting for a photographer, especially when you’re seeing epic vistas posted on social media every week from people who can travel a lot, or live with the Highlands on their doorstep. It’s easy to get jealous and blame your surroundings for lack of inspiration. We have plenty of good forests and woodland which I love to shoot, but I wanted to create something different.
Having tried some more abstract techniques including multiple exposures and intentional camera movement over the past year or so I had been playing with the idea of trying to make an alternate landscape from my local area. I’ve done a couple of small projects recently and put some focus into the idea of creating something from nothing, but I wanted to do something bigger this time, I wanted to transport the viewer to one of those epic mountain vistas.
Having just returned from a week in Northumberland I thought it would be worth a quick write up alongside some of my favourite images. I don’t often get out of Nottinghamshire with my camera, so a trip to the coast was a big change in subject for me – I was looking forward to the challenge of doing something different. It was a family holiday so most days I wasn’t concentrating on photography but I managed to squeeze a bit of camera time in.
The first day was spent over on Holy Island meeting up with some more family, I just took my little Fuji X-M1 which is my walk around camera for when I don’t want to carry the big Canon, perfect for these sorts of occasions. I had a bit of a play with my body cap pinhole at various locations, but didn’t get anything that quite made the cut. To be honest I wasn’t expecting much photographically from that day, but in early afternoon a sea fret came in, I quickly grabbed a few shots including the two below before all visibility was gone.
So nearly the end of the year and time for the traditional blog based round up of how my photography has gone over the last 12 months.
In 2015 I started to try and take photography seriously and this brought my first ever publication and first ever print sale, but I didn’t actually take many photos and I took almost none of my local area. I set some resolutions at the start of the year to try and fix this, basically take more photos, experiment more, enter competitions and a more personal one to capture more family moments – I think I’ve done pretty well at all of these.
To celebrate a year where I feel my photography has taken some big steps forward and to say thanks for all the likes, shares and comments I’m giving away two A3 prints of photos I’ve taken this year.
There’s a pinned post on both my Facebook and Twitter pages, all you have to do to enter is make sure you’re following me then like/retweet those posts before Sunday 20th November. One unique winner will be chosen at random from each post, entering on both will increase your chances of winning one! Continue reading “Print Giveaway”
I’m on a bit of a mission of self discovery in my photography at the moment, the last 6 months or so has been a huge learning curve for me in terms of subject, style and processing. This has lead to a lot of new work which I’m happy with but also long periods of self doubt and creative block.
A well known weekly competition on Twitter has been my driving force this year to take photographs every week, I know the majority of my entries don’t stand a chance but my resolution to enter every week has forced me to get out and take something I’m not ashamed to share even when I’m feeling uninspired, which is a massive positive.
I recently had a well earned break in Keswick in the Lake District, it was a family occasion to celebrate me turning 30 and our 8 month old daughter’s first holiday so photography wasn’t top of the agenda, but I knew I could squeeze in a couple of outings with the camera and was hoping to make the most of this to bank a few shots with the amazing scenery that we don’t have here in Nottingham.
We stopped with my parents in Yorkshire on the way there and back and on the first of these I suggested a drive to West Burton as I wanted to check out the well known waterfall there. The weather wasn’t brilliant but there was still good potential and I spent a while trying some different angles, it was also my first use of the new Manfrotto 190XPROB tripod in the field which did a great job. I’ve seen some beautiful autumnal shots of these falls so tried something different with a dark black and white take on the scene.
Recently my work has drifted towards a darker more abstract side, I’ve been using quite a lot of camera movement within this, which normally means shutter speeds of 0.3 to 2 seconds. In daylight the bottom end of this is just about achievable with ISO 100 and f/22 but sometimes you need to get things darker, a polariser or ND8 usually get me in the right ballpark.
That’s all easy enough on the Canon 6D but often I only have a Fuji X-M1 in my pocket, the 27mm lens has an awkward 39mm filter thread and I don’t really want to be messing about with filters on there, the point of that camera is compact portability. The other downside is it maxes at ISO 200 and f/16, so I’m miles away from getting the slow shutter I need.
I’d been meaning to post this blog a fortnight ago but struggle with time to write so better late than never.
Trees, forests and woodland have been featuring in my photography more and more, mainly because it’s the sort of place I most enjoy spending time, relaxing away from work and people. One of the big draws was to find some mist having seen stunning atmospheric shots from photographers I admire. Autumn completely passed by in a blur with the birth of my daughter so I thought I’d be waiting another year but woke up to thick fog on an early March morning.
If you follow me on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram you will have recently seen me post a dark black and white photo of some blurry trees, if not then here it is.
I entered it into a couple of regular weekly competitions on Twitter, one of which being Fotospeed Print Mondays where a photo from that weekend is chosen to win an A3 print. For those who don’t know Fotospeed they make fantastic papers, so if you print your work do check them out.
Most people get excited at the prospect of snow round here, especially photographers as it transforms the landscape and opens up lots of different shots which wouldn’t normally work. We only seem to get one day with a decent covering each year recently so you have to make the most of the opportunity!
It wasn’t exactly a blizzard but we woke up this morning to a light dusting, enough that out in the countryside it had settled well, so I set off at 7:30 to catch first light and spend a couple of hours walking round a local spot near Calverton, Nottingham where there’s an area of woodland and the old colliery spoil heap to get some views from.