Landscape photography is about capturing the world around us at any given moment. How we choose to capture it is based around a number of factors including skill, a good eye for a composition and an emotional connection. The ability to relate that emotional connection on to a sensor/film is important for the photograph to work. The choice of location also has a large influence of what emotional state the photographer is at that moment. This story is about a little place in the Yorkshire Dales. A place where I feel at ease and in my comfort zone. A place where my creativity flourishes.
Souther Scales lies on the northern foothills of Ingleborough in the Yorkshire Dales. It is a location I have returned to many a time and on each visit I seem to find something new. It is an area of around a kilometer in length. Parking is limited but access to the location is from the B6255 between Ribblehead Viaduct and Ingleton. It is a short walk up to the limestone pavements, running North East to South West of the North face of Ingleborough.
I must stress at this point that the area can be treacherous. Walking on limestone pavement can be dangerous and requires your full concentration. Wrong footing can lead to a slip down to its many small crevices and could lead to broken ankles or other injuries. Positioning a tripod is also very difficult and a steady, secure positioning needs patience. If you give it’s much deserved respect, the area can reward you well.
What brings me back for more is that the area provides two elements to form a composition. Patterns of the limestone pavement and gnarly trees dominate the area. This makes it easy in a way. It allows me to concentrate on building a picture with just two elements in mind. The hard part however, is finding the right patterns in the limestone and combining those with a tree that has good shape. Souther Scales will play a large part in my project named ‘Carved’
The limestone pavement has many patterns to be found and I prefer the irregular but rounded shapes that take you to a meandering journey to my choice of tree. Weather and time have played their part not only on the limestone but on the many characteristic trees. The branches weave in different directions, leaning to one side and forming almost human like silhouettes.
The potential of this place is unlimited for me and every time I leave, I look forward to returning. Landscape photographers need that a place that is personal to them. A location where you feel at ease and have the desire to work with. To follow my story and the results it produces, take a look at my project. I have recently made a vlog of my recent adventure. Please view below;
I will not be the first to suggest that landscape photography is a soothing tonic when life throws you setbacks. Yesterday I posted a video which touches on the importance of living your life with the mindset that whatever hard times get in your way, it is always important to remember the good. To reflect on what you have and the simple things in life that bring you joy. Bereavement of a loved one will play a part in most of our lives and we choose our own way on how to cope with it. My hike and landscape photography day in Eskdale in the The Lake District certainly eased my soul and reminded me how good life can be.
It is often found that black and white landscape photography is an alternative option when things do not go to plan. This maybe down to the weather conditions being overcast or that elusive sunrise not painting the sky with its pink, orange and magenta hues. This option mainly comes into consideration in the post processing stage with the mindset of trying a black and white edit before being discarded to the bin. Occasionally it works but what if we set out with the premise of purely shooting black and white?
UK weather can be so varied and unpredictable. I thought that this Winter was going to be a case of very cold temperatures and lots of snow. A time where the UK would come to a stand still. It usually does after a couple of centimetres of the white stuff to be honest. I wanted deep layers of snow dumped on the Mountain tops and snow drifts creating patterns for me to point my camera at. Here we are however in late January and I’m still waiting.
When or if it does come then no doubt it will be mid week and by the weekend, when i’m ready with my camera, a warm front would have arrived and melted away any hopes of bagging a good iconic shot of snow capped mountains. If I was to get a taste of any snow this Winter, then I had to get up high. This is a short story of my adventure up to Dow Crag and Old Man of Coniston. I was pleased I got my shot.
At the time of writing this, 2020 has just started and it is at this time of the year where a lot of us reflect on the past 12 months. We question what good has come out of it and what could we have done better. For a while, we sense a wave elation as in the new year, we know we can put wrong to right. Resolutions maybe short lived but if we remain disciplined, who knows can be achieved.
I wasn’t working on Friday 18th October so I planned to head up to what has become my second home, the Lake District. My intention was to start the day exploring Borrowdale, hoping to video and photograph the early Autumn colours and then hike up to Glaramara and Allen Crags. My days often include a hike as I am currently on a mission to complete all the Wainwright fells by next year. Based in Yorkshire, the drive is usually around two to three hours so I wanted to make the most of my visits.
Without a doubt, Autumn is the time of year where the majority of hungry landscape photographers, no matter what skill level, head out on location to attempt to capture their take on the colours that the season has on offer.
I have recently read in social media of an opinion that landscape photographers should not name their locations so to limit the number of visitors which leads to damaging the environment. I am all for the importance of preserving our wonderful country side but I feel that not disclosing the location is not sharing the beauty such locations have to offer. As photographers, I believe it is important to aim to capture a different take of a scene. We should however educate ourselves on what we can do as photographers to maintain a beautiful location and the environment. I may touch on this in future vlogs.
The last time I visited Malham Cove, I was met with very wet conditions with the added element of gusty wind. That wasn’t ideal of course as a landscape photographer trying to come back with the goods. I promised a few of my YouTube channel subscribers and viewers that I would return shortly. My eye was attracted by a cluster of tree which had formed some rather interesting shapes. A return to the location was definitely on the cards when the conditions were more favourable. This morning session was about the return and the better light that had come with me.