Sunday, 31 January 2010

New Images - Bristol at Dusk

I have just added a selection of new images taken during the dusk hours around the City of Bristol's Harbourside area.

This area has undergone a dramatic change over the last 15 years or so with modern architecture and sculpture mixed in with some of the old industrial relics of Bristol's historic Harbour.

I spent a few days photographing the Floating Harbour during October last year. While I came away with a large number of images, it was the wonderful sky at dusk that presented the best light for photographing the modern architecture.

The architecture made an ideal subject for a view camera but an unfortunate side effect of dusk coinciding with rush hour meant there were lots of people about. The view camera proved to be an ideal excuse for many passers by to stop for a chat and, on occasion, unwittingly disturb my timing of a long exposure. Still, on the plus side, the long exposures required in the low light effectively erased all human life from the scene. Photographing Pero's Bridge without anyone walking over it, for example, would otherwise have been impossible without being arrested for obstruction of a public highway!

Thursday, 28 January 2010

New Images - Wells, Somerset

Just added are a selection of new images from the historic city of Wells in Somerset taken last year in the autumn.

With a long history, much of it centred around the magnificent cathedral, Wells is the smallest city in England. It is a favourite place of mine in the Autumn. It's actually a fine city at any time of year, but it's relaxed pace becomes especially relaxed once the summer visitors have left. The position of the setting sun at this time of year makes the West face of the cathedral a fine subject to photograph at the end of the day too.

Friday, 22 January 2010

Image of the Week - Grasmere, Cumbria

Following on from yesterday's post about Evostock, I always enjoy scouring through my archive looking for images. I have a well organised DAM system and can call up images suitable for submitting to a new stock library or to match a picture buyer's request at the push of a button. However, there's no fun in that and I find there is pleasure in spending a few moments rooting through my archives to see what lurks.

It's something that I find comes up time and time again, but reviewing pictures long after they were taken is a good way of evaluating them and occasionally a few previously overlooked gems surface. What was marked as just an average image at the time can look a whole lot different a few years on. Of course the opposite can also happen.

I photographed this scene at sunrise in October 2005. The sunlight that day lasted only a short time and it was to rain for the rest of the day, although had I known that then I might not have been so keen to wade into the lake.

I was knee deep in water and, with my camera set on a tripod, was patiently waiting for the ripples in the water to disperse. It was a very calm morning as the sun had yet to inject it's energy into the still air. I had visualised this scene as a perfect mirror image reflected in the glass-like water.

After what seemed like an age the ripples were almost gone but as I readied myself the electric cable release slipped from my hand. Not wanting to ruin the switch in the water I made a grab for it before it fell into the lake. This I succeeded to do, but I was also successful in setting off another chain of ripples across the lake.

Realising the sunlight was going to be short lived I made a couple of exposures anyway. I waited again for the clam to return, but the sunlight was fading by the time the water resembled glass. I felt the light on the peak of Helm Crag was an important dimension to the picture and without it my "perfect mirror image" picture didn't work so I later deleted it.

While I must have liked this image with it's ripples enough to keep it, I was obviously emotionally affected by the fact it wasn't the image I had set-out to make and had rated it accordingly. When I came across it again today I realised that I really like it and if anything the ripples help ensure the sunlit mountain of Helm Crag stand out. I'm not so sure now that two sunlit Helm Crags would have made such a successful picture.

I'm slowly working my way through new images but I may well post a few more re-discovered images over the coming weeks.