Monday 4th November 2019
Usually I like to thoroughly research a location before taking a photograph. As a result my photography can lack a certain spontaneity.
With that in mind I decided to head to an area of the Lake District that I have never visited before.
Borrowdale is an area south of the village of the Shap between the A6 and the M6. It became part of the Lake District National Park when the boundary was extended in August 2016.
My plan was to take a walk through the valley and to see if anything caught my eye. This is generally my approach when exploring a new location.
It was a grey, overcast day, ideal for shooting more intimate compositions, starting with the stones that edged the ford that spans Borrow Beck.
✓ – Using a shutter speed of 0.5 seconds has retained some detail in the water
✓ – The composition flows from left to right which for those of us in the western world (that read left to right) is more harmonious
✕ – Framing is a little tight on the stones
Once I had captured my first shot I then took a pleasant stroll through the valley. I walked for 5 miles hiking up to the telecommunications tower in the hills.
I was enjoying myself so much that I lost track of time. With only a few hours of daylight left I decided to retrace my steps.
✓ – Strong leading lines of the path and beck lead the eye to the hills in the distance
✓ – I feel that the image has a sense of loneliness and isolation
✕ – Lack of any direct light means that I have had to push things a little too far in Lightroom
This morning I had a 1-2-1 with Derek who was visiting the Lake District for a few weeks.
We met at Rydal and spent a couple of hours photographing the boathouse. Unfortunately it was overcast and windy, not the best conditions for photography.
With that in mind I suggested heading to Thirlmere.
With it’s steep sides Thirlmere can be quite an imposing place, perfect for a moody long exposure!
When I was at Borrowdale on Monday I used my typical approach when visiting a location for the first time. This involves going for a walk and allowing the compositions to come to me.
This proved to be rather in efficient. I walked for 10 miles and came away with just 2 images.
What I need is a different approach.
With that in mind this morning I headed for another location that I have never visited before, Great Mell Fell.
This time rather than waiting for the compositions to come to me I would go looking for them. Here’s what I found…
✓ – Strong, almost graphic composition grabs the viewers attention
✓ – Well balanced with the branches on the left hand side balanced by the slope to the right hand side
✕ – The left hand branch has too much visual weight and distracts from the other elements in the frame
✓ – Very simple composition with no distracting elements
✓ – Again, another well balanced image with the slope to the left balancing the tree to the right
✕ – Getting even lower might have provided more seperation between the lower branches and the hills in the background
✓ – The tree and the branches provide a natural frame for Little Mell Fell in the distance
✓ – Another left to right composition; the detail in the tree trunk grabs the viewer’s attention before allowing it to more right towards Little Mell Fell
✕ – The sky on the left of the tree is a little darker
The weather was not great today so I spent the day in the office editing my latest video.
We arrived in Aylesbury at lunch time after an uneventful journey. Helen and I lived here for all of our lives prior to moving north in 2010.
We were amazed at how busy it has become down here. And they seem to be building everywhere!
There is no doubt in our minds that be made the right decision to relocate when we did.
Spent the day visiting family and friends including a wonderful lunch with Ian Spicer and his wife Lori.
I first me Ian when he attended a workshop that I ran with James Burns back in the spring.
Above everything the best thing to have come from my YouTube channel has been the people that I have met and the friends that I have made.
When it comes to exploring new locations I can take 2 approaches: to allow compositions to come to me or to actively to go in search of them.
Both approaches can yield results, determining which one to adopt probably depends on the location and how I am feeling at the time.