SEASONAL LANDSCAPES 2021
Updated: Dec 21, 2020
Once again its that time of year and and I’m pleased to present my fourth Calendar with some more in depth information on each of the monthly images. If you own the Calendar this information can easily be accessed through a website QR code at the bottom of each page. Thanks for looking.
This image was taken in the grounds of Sherborne Castle about 30 minutes after sunrise. The conditions were ideal with a heavy frost and low lying mist across the fields. Arriving about an hour before sunrise gave me plenty of time to find some good compositions and enjoy the colour in the sky. I have always been attracted to this view with the trackway cutting through the scene; providing a great “lead in line” In this case, into the Mist. Normally I avoid people in my photos but I have learnt that in many situations, such as this, the human element can add great interest. This dog walker caught me by surprise with a loud “GOOD MORNING” as she went past, with the small dog following on behind. I used my Nikon Z7 with 70-200, set at about 100mm to add some compression to bring the distance mist forward. I find myself using this lens more and more now as I love the range it offers. As. the light was quite strong after the sun had come up I was able to easily handhold the camera and lens, with only a Polariser fitted.
I thought I would include an 2 additional images of the castle taken slightly early, with a lovely glow to the sky and the “Lone Oak Tree” seen in the main image
Last February I had many early morning outings to some lovely local haunts by the River Stour. I particularly love the frosty mornings at this time of the year, with the mist rising across the water and fields. The image I have chosen is at Shillingstone near the base of Hambledon Hill, which you can just make out in the background. On this occasion the river level was quite high but not bursting it’s banks. The misty conditions added that etherial atmosphere which for me really makes early morning photography special. My setup was quite simple with the Nikon Z7 and 24-70 F4 lens and Circular Polariser. With an F11 aperture and the camera touted on a tripod I was able to get slow stutter speed, enabling me to soften the water.
After careful studying of the weather apps the night before I decided to take an early morning trip down to Corfe Castle, as the prospect of misty conditions seemed quite high. However, as with many early morning visits to this location there was no mist. My plan was then to relocate to Wareham to capture the view along the River From. The image I used in the Calendar was taken about 30 minutes from sunrise, when I was blessed with some lovely colour and reflected “pinky” hues in the water. It is a popular spot with many photographers and I have included another image, taken with a longer lens after the sun had risen.
This series of images were the last to be taken further into Dorset as the Lockdown Period came into being soon after, so my photography, was for several months limited to very local locations.
This particular view of Colmer's Hill was actually taken just after the Lock Down but it’s an image I’ve been after for a while and wanted to include it in this years Calendar. The location is about 30 miles from where I live, so it takes about 50 minutes to get there and another 30 minutes to climb to the viewpoint. As I made my way there I had to drive quite slowly due to really thick fog and I was a bit concerned that the Hill would be completely covered. However, on arrival I somehow knew the conditions were going to be favourable. In darkness I climbed the Hill and was expecting a number of other photographers to have had the same idea but it was nice to have had this stunning view all to myself. I think on this occasion many were swarming across West Hill at Corfe Castle.
It’s on mornings like this that I’m reminded why I get up so early and put myself through all kinds of physical exertions often in freezing temperatures. It’s certainly not getting any easier as I get older but for me it makes the final result even more special, as theres always a story behind the picture. The landscape all around this area of Dorset is stunning and one of my favourite locations.
May for me as a Seasonal Landscape photographer is all about Bluebells. Traditionally I always make an early morning trip to Micheldever Woods which I first discovered in 2010 when I lived in Southampton and have been going there ever since. Although I was tempted this year to sneak a visit I convinced myself not too, as hopefully, fingers crossed, I will be going in 2021. Strangely though we did discover several very local woods, within walking distance near my village in Somerset, quite by accident. The image I decided to use was one from 2019 taken just as I was leaving the woods. I was particularly taken with this view as I turned round. I have always learnt as a photographer, especially with sunrises and sunsets always look behind you! I decided to use a 70-200 lens to compress the perspective as it makes the blues appear thicker and more dense.
Since moving down to South Somerset and finding myself in easy reach of Corfe Castle it has probably become one of my favourite locations but at times also one of the most challenging.