ARCHIVE 355 – LOOKING SOUTHEAST FROM EAST WATER LANE (MONO)

 

 


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Looking southeast from East Water Lane, on the Mendip Hills, Somerset; 7 Aug 2014.

The eastern side of the lane, with a line of Hawthorns rising above a dry stone wall of the local limestone.  In the distance, trees line the road that continues on eastwards towards the Hunters Lodge Inn, Green Ore, and the main highway that runs down the Mendips’ steep southern slopes into the tiny city of Wells.

Back beyond the nearest tree, to its left, several other low trees are faintly seen out in the field.

Click onto the image to open a larger version in a separate window.

Technique: D800 with 12-24 Sigma lens at 12mm; 200 ISO; Silver Efex Pro 2, starting at the Cool Tones 1 preset.

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ARCHIVE 353 – CATTLE BESIDE THE NORTH DRAIN (MONO)

 

 


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A misty morning along the North Drain, looking east from the Jack’s Drove bridge; the Somerset Levels; 28 Aug 2013.

Click onto the image to open a larger version in a separate window – recommended.

Technique: D700 with 70-300 Nikkor lens at 270mm; 400 ISO; Silver Efex Pro’s High Key 2 preset.

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ARCHIVE 350 – MAASAI GIRAFFE (MONO)

 

 


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Maasai Giraffe, Nairobi National Park, Kenya; probably late 1970s.

Although this is a portrait of a wild animal, and so a representation of the natural world, it is also partly abstract.  The animal is (more or less!) in focus, but behind it, even close behind it, the landscape is only diffusely visible.  Looking at this very limited depth of focus, I think this must have been taken with an old Vivitar 400mm telephoto that I had in those far off days.

Composition: in terms of the “rule” of thirds, the giraffe occupies the right vertical third of the photo (i.e. the vertical line about one third of the way into the image from the right margin), which is a visually strong position in which to be.  The thornbushes immediately behind the giraffe are out of focus, and those further out towards the (just about visible) horizon are more diffuse still.  This gives a sense of distance and depth.

Technique:  use of Nik Software’s Silver Efex Pro has added a slightly bluish tint to the image, and rendered the out of focus areas still more diffuse.  These effects are enhanced by the addition of a pale vignette, a quite thick zone of pale diffusion right around the image’s borders, the effects of which are best seen to the right of the bush immediately behind the giraffe, and on the distant bushes in the image’s top left corner.

Click onto the image to open a (slightly) larger version in a separate window.
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ARCHIVE 347 – POLLARDS AT TEALHAM (MONO)

 

 


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Pollarded willows on Tealham Moor, on the Somerset Levels; 30 Oct 2014.

A typical Levels landscape – dead flat countryside,  with water (sometimes a lot of water!) and pollarded trees.  Pollarding is explained here.

The more I look at this, the more these trees resemble knobbly headed beings with huge coiffures, that are coming slowly forwards to look at me – the second and third from the left, in particular, seem to be craning to get a better view.

Click onto the image to open a larger version in a separate window.

Technique: D700 with 12-24 Sigma lens at 24mm; 800 ISO; Silver Efex Pro 2; Color Efex Pro 4.

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ARCHIVE 346 – KILIMANJARO (MONO)

 

 


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Mt Kilimanjaro, Africa’s highest mountain, seen from Kenya’s Amboseli Game Reserve; July 1978.

There is another Kilimanjaro image here .

Click onto the image to open a larger version in a separate window.

Technique: OM-1 with 75mm-150mm Zuiko lens; Agfa CT18 colour slide rated at 64 ISO; converted to mono in Silver Efex Pro 2.

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PEOPLE 324 – GOING TO WORK 56 (MONO)

 

 


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Nearly all of my Going to Work images have been captured in central Bristol and many of them have been early on cold, dark mornings – well, its a FATman thing …  But the rush hour also occurs far out in the countryside, as the city sucks in labour from its surrounding towns and (often gentrified) villages.

The Old Bristol Road across the top of the Mendip Hills and does exactly what it says on the packet, apart from arriving at a (more or less) modern city.  It may not be an A road or a motorway, but it brings people from the Mendips and further south in towards the city.  And, because it is a open and clear road, with fairly long, straight stretches, these commuters in their modern vehicles often cover it at considerable speed.  Twice a day, the relative peace of these hills is shattered by the roar of powerful engines, and road accidents – often at road junctions – can be serious affairs.

Another image – here – shows the “rush hour” away from the city centre, and the image below also shows cars speeding along these Mendip roads.

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Earlier images from this series can be found here: 1, 2, 3, 45, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 1213, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 2324, 25, 26, 27, 28,  29, 30,  31,  32, 33  34  35  36 37  38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45  46 47 48 49 50 51 52 53 54 55 Each will open in a separate window.

Click onto the images to open a larger version in a separate window and, for the upper image,  click onto the enlarged image once more to enlarge it further.

Technique (upper image): X-T2 with 55-200 Fujinon lens at 234mm (equiv); 400 ISO; Lightroom; Silver Efex Pro 2, starting at the Holga preset and adding a tone; the Old Bristol Road, east of Priddy, on the Mendip Hills, Somerset; 16 Feb 2018.
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ARCHIVE 340 – THE VIEW TO THE NORTH ON TEALHAM MOOR (MONO)

 

 


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The small tarmac lane of Jack’s Drove heads off northwards across the flats of Tealham Moor on the Somerset Levels, towards Wedmore; 10 Apr 2014.

A water-filled ditch forms the boundary of the pastures to the right of the road, and trees (alders on the right) have been planted along the road’s low embankments, both to strengthen them and to show where the road is when it is flooded.  During last winter’s awful floods, which were far more severe to the south of here, the surface of this road stayed just above the surrounding waters, as can be seen in this photo.

Click onto the image to open a larger version in a separate window.

Technique: D700 with 16-35 Nikkor lens at 16mm; 200 ISO; Silver Efex Pro 2, starting at the High Contrast Orange preset and adding a slight selenium tone.

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STILL LIFE 202 – LONE TREE (MONO)

 

 


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The view across the lake at Priddy Mineries Reserve, on the Mendip Hills.

Can’t quite believe the title I’ve given this – sounds like an entry for a camera club competition!  What have I got against camera clubs?  Nothing, except to know that they’re not for me.   I’m a loner when it comes to photography – being alone and aware of my surroundings is what works.

And as for competitions, photography is to me – like most if not all of the other arts –  far too subjective to allow meaningful ranking or judging of one photograph against another.  In photography, we each do our own thing, we express ourselves.  If others like our images, well that’s a plus.  If not, well that’s how it is, and we should, I think, keep being true to ourselves, keep being true to how we look at and see the world.  For me, taking photos with a view to competition judges saying positive things about them would hardly be satisfying.  But then, as always, I am not the norm and neither are you – we are all different, we each do our own thing.

Click onto the image to open a larger version in a separate window, and click onto that image to enlarge it yet again.

Technique: X-T2 with 55-200 Fujinon lens at 98mm (equiv); 200 ISO; Lightroom, using the Astia/Soft film simulation; Silver Efex Pro 2, starting at the Silhouette EV +1 preset, and adding a tone; Priddy Mineries Reserve, Mendip Hills, Somerset; 16 Feb 2018.
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STILL LIFE 198 – MEGALITH 5 (MONO)

 

 


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Amongst the prehistoric ritual stones at Stanton Drew, in the Chew Valley south of Bristol.

Other images of these ritual stones are here: 1  2  3 4 .

More info about this prehistoric site is here .

Click onto the image to open a larger version in a separate window – recommended.

Technique: X-T1 with 10-24 Fujinon lens at 14mm (equiv); 200 ISO; Lightroom, using the Velvia/Vivid film simulation; Silver Efex Pro 2, starting at the Tin Type preset; Stanton Drew, in the Chew Valley south of Bristol; 6 Nov 2017.

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ARCHIVE 338 – THE VIEW SOUTH FROM RATTLEDOWN FARM

 

 


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The view south from Rattledown Farm, looking out over the Chew Valley, south of Bristol; Chew Valley Lake is in the background – looking for all the world like blue sky; 12 July 2013.

Another slice of the English countryside, on a beautiful morning.  I think that the line of taller trees take my eye up through the picture to the lake’s blue, which then pulls my gaze right.  And I like the wedge of vivid pale green cutting across the image, just about along the upper horizontal third.

Chew Valley Lake is an artificial reservoir, flooded in the early 1950s – Google tells me it is the 5th largest artificial lake in the UK.  It has something of a special place in my life in that it was around its shores, in 1967, that I took my first, hesitant steps to becoming a birdwatcher – “with a little help from my friends”!

I was useless at birdwatching in those days.  I was (and am) short sighted, wore glasses, and had only a small telescope bought for me by my parents many years earlier.  So, a bird would appear, I’d see it and whip off my glasses so as to be able to use my telescope – and then totally lose sight of it, casting blindly about with the scope.  For Christmas that year, my impecunious mother bought me a pair of 10×50 binoculars that could be used with my glasses on and – no pun intended – I never looked back.

Click onto the image to open a larger version in a separate window.

Technique: D800 used in APS-C format, with a 70-300 Nikkor lens giving a focal length of 450mm; 400 ISO;  final manipulation in Colour Efex Pro 4.

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