Bluebells and Manor Houses….and the Dam-busters were packed into a full day out in the magnificent rural areas around Cheshire and parts of the Peak district which border Derbyshire. Bluebells are supposed to appear in spring around early april, but its been such a cold spring up here in the midlands they are just coming into bloom now in late June! Lyme house just outside Wilmslow was the setting for parts of the famous BBC production a few years ago “Pride and Prejudice” with a magnificent manicured garden in a huge expanse of countryside. The bluebells were in abundance up around the Derwent reservoir too. This was where the boffins experimented with the bouncing bombs in WW2 to hit Germany hard. These round bombs were dropped and then bounced along the water to hit the dam wall. Its a wonderful area and the peak district deserves another look sometime in the future.
Chasing Sunstars and Contre Jour… Last evening the clouds disappeared from the sky and a cold air mass in from the sea made the light quite hazy. I was initially quite disappointed when I drove up the Purbeck hills just behind Wareham to work my way over to Lulworth cove for some evening seascapes. I turned back and headed for an area I had marked out mentally a few days before as a potential dusk shoot. Here the light played its magic late in the evening, with sunstars just waiting to be captured. The backlighting is my favourite type of light and so I was very happy to work these scenes until the sun disappeared completely.
The Verdant green farmland and hills of the Perbeck area around the Villages of East and West Lulworth, Church Knowle, Worth Matravers, Tyneham Valley and Kimmeridge seem to roll on and on and on. England in early summer is wonderful and even with the changing weather and passing clouds and rainy days…. its just beautiful.
The Summer Evenings are continuing to be warm and sunny with just a few scattered clouds for added interest. The flowers are out in abundance along the Jurassic Dorset coastline and my son-in-law Matt and I set up one evening near Clavell’s Tower for some Sunset Photography. This historic tower was recently moved brick by brick back from the crumbling edge and is used as a B&B on occasion. Notable author Thomas Hardy often visited the area during the time it was used as a lighthouse and recently P.D James used it as a setting for one of her Novels and even Bill Bryson makes mentions of it. The tower is another popular spot with outdoor photographers, but not usually in the summer. However we found it quite charming and certainly the lovely light complimented the scene beautifully.
In England only 24 hours and itching to get down to the Jurassic Coast in Dorset at Dusk. Drove down to Kimmeridge Bay with my son-in-law Matt and we set up right on the water’s edge. Luckily the wind was favourable and so being off-shore it kept the waves down a little so we could shoot without getting too wet. Dusk comes at this time of the year about 9.00 to 9.30 and we watched the colours appear slowly after the sun actually set. This is a wonderful part of England and so many bays and coves to choose from right along the Dorset coast. Kimmeridge Bay is a perennial favourite with local landscape photographers. Depending on the time of year, it can be good for dawn and dusk shooting.
My son-in-Law Matt Bennett is senior staff writer at Imagine Publishing’s UK Digital Photographer magazine. He sometimes asks me for material to use in major articles and this one proved to be a huge 12 page feature on the art of photographing and finishing great Panoramas with your digital camera. I have been shooting Panoramas for many years and got very serious about it when I purchased a Hasselblad Xpan film camera. Beautiful to use, but alas in the digital age, film is expensive and digital imaging far superior. Most of the images used in the article were provided by me for Matt to use and some of them are the lovely film images produced by that specialist Hasselblad film camera I mentioned. This issue (135) of the magazine has been out now in the UK newsagents for a fortnight, but will not hit our shelves for at least 2 months.