Wednesday, 20 December 2017

Autumn on the Southwell Trail - Part 2

The theme for part two of 'autumn on the Southwell Trail' is leaves in the early part of the season with some signs of the colours beginning change. I start with a selection of close-up studies of ash, beech and field maple leaves:

I try to identify as many of the trees, shrubs, and wildflowers growing along the trail. I see this as part of gaining a wider appreciation of the local environment. That said, I will select my subjects based on shape, colour and light rather than their identity. Later, I might try to identify species using reference books or internet searches.  

I mention this as I am unsure about the identity of the next few images. I am confident that the leaves  in first image belongs to one of the rose family shrubs that are common along the trail but I have no idea for the other two. 

The next selection includes wider angle shots of horse chestnut, silver birch, possibly black popular, and maybe bird cherry (I say possibly and maybe as I have identified the trees solely from the photographs):

More straightforward  to identify are these ash trees with some of the leaves starting to change from green to yellow:

Hawthorn is common on the trail and at this time of year there are plenty of haws. On a nearby bush I also spotted a Red Admiral butterfly:

Finally, there are a few areas of the trail that are carpeted in fallen leaves:

Sunday, 17 December 2017

Quayside in Falmouth - Part 3

The first selection in this final part of the quayside series is boats and ropes. I didn't feel that I could this finish a series without including some photographs of the boats around the harbour.

The challenge when photographing boats is deciding how much of the structure to include in the frame. Sometimes it is only necessary to suggest the presence of a boat. This can add a depth to the composition as the picture is built around lines and shapes rather than a simple portrait of a boat. In these circumstances less can be more.

For example, this small panel includes images with varying amounts boat in the frame from one composition that excludes the boats altogether through to one that shows a boat in the wider context of the harbour. Each image has merits but my favourite is the first image due to the repeated shape of the ropes and their reflections.

In my favourite image the placement of the boats is governed by two key points. The first point is  where the middle rope enters the water and the reflection starts and the second is where the closet rope reflection meets with the corner of the frame. On this occasion, I think the impact of the composition would have reduced by including too much of the boats.

This final selection of the series is a bit of a catch all. They are individual images that didn't fit with any of themes covered in the series but are part of the summer walks along the quayside in Falmouth. Included are some reflections, rust abstracts, some metal structures around the quay and an abstract of the harbour wall:

Wednesday, 13 December 2017

Quayside in Falmouth - Part 2

Moored at the quayside in Falmouth are row of expensive looking yachts. Occasionally these make interesting subjects but, more often than not, I look for the abstract patterns created by the masts reflected in the water.

The best time for this type of shot is high tide with a gentle movement in the water. The reflected masts then break down into squiggles with the odd patch of colour. I generally choose a shutter speed that freezes the movement, perhaps 100th or 125th of a second, and simply alter the focal length and the aspect ratio to create the compositions.

The results on the back of the camera can be a bit underwhelming and flat at first look but this is easily corrected in post fact, an auto adjustment often does the trick.

The key to the above compositions is the way the water moves. If there is a stronger current or more wind the effect is lost or the photographic outcomes are different. These are some other examples of quayside reflection taken in different conditions during the summer.

Saturday, 9 December 2017

Quayside in Falmouth - Part 1

Whilst I am piecing together my series of autumn photographs taken along the Southwell Trail, this post  looks back to the summer and a selection of images taken around the quayside in Falmouth.

The quay is one of my favourite places to potter with a compact camera.There is so much detail to capture, different shapes and colours, and many reflections - it never really disappoints.

As the photographs were taken over a couple of months there are too many to load in one post so I will group them together in a number of themes starting with some bad weather reflections in the old harbour:

Also on the old harbour walls, were these mooring rings, chains and rusting iron bars. I particularly like the contrast of the rusty colours with the yellow lichen stonework: