February update

I'm not sure where the time has been going lately, or rather I do, too many projects and not enough hours in the day. As a result my website galleries have been neglected and some pruning of the weaker images to make way for stronger new ones wouldn't go amiss. I have managed to add a few images here and there though and these are some of the highlights.

Sunrise at Dunwich Heath, Suffolk

Sunrise at Dunwich Heath, Suffolk

We'll start with some good news, I was delighted to find out earlier this month that this image of Dunwich Heath was commended in the Changing Coastlines category of International Photographer of the Year and was included in the awards book and the exhibition which is currently running at Kew Gardens in London. 
 
Obviously with the heather in full bloom this image isn't recent but it's new to my website. Taken back in August last year as part of a coastal project for the National Trust's Neptune appeal, it was the culmination of several early morning visits. I'd earmarked this view after a walk around the heath as it not only included the iconic coastguard cottages and the sea of heather that washes over Dunwich Heath during the summer with a nice path to lead the eye from one to the other but more importantly the sea is visible in the background to show the coastal location. All I needed to do was to be there as the first rays of sunlight splashed across the pink and purple heather and hope for a nice interesting Suffolk sky. As is always the way when you have a clear vision of what you want and it involves getting up in the wee small hours, the elements refuse to come together. On this occasion though it was worth persevering and on the fifth visit I got the shot in perfect conditions.

You'll find more of my images from the Suffolk coast here 

Freezing fog at Thetford Forest, Norfolk

Freezing fog at Thetford Forest, Norfolk

The second image was the result of a rather unexpected change in the weather. Having spent a bit of an unproductive morning on the north Norfolk coast struggling to capture how freezing cold and wintry it felt, with nothing but clear blue sunny skies to work with, I decided to head home. Halfway home the blue skies were swallowed by freezing fog and when I drove into an eerie looking Thetford Forest it would have been rude not to stop. Fog can add a magical quality to a woodland with the added bonus of simplifying what can often be a 'busy' scene so grabbing my camera and tripod, I wandered through the trees looking for interesting compositions until the light started to fade, wishing the whole day had been this good.

Sunset at Turf Fen, Norfolk

Sunset at Turf Fen, Norfolk

Over Christmas (I told you I was behind) I took some time out from other photographic commitments to do a little photography for myself.  I have several places on my list that were particularly suited to a winter visit, one of which was Howe Hill on the Norfolk Broads. This windpump on the river Ant was on my winter list not because of the weather but rather the position of the sun. During the winter months the sun sets in the south east positioning it nicely next to the windpump there's also far less river traffic at this time of year.

As I drove up to Norfolk under a nice cloudy sky things were looking promising as my plan was to use the hopefully calm river to reflect the sky. Unfortunately although I arrived to some lovely low winter light, the clouds were all behind me. I thought about wandering in the other direction to see if I could incorporate the clouds and the warm light on the wind pump but opted to stick with the plan and hope the cloud moved. I set up this shot and waited, the sun dropped lower and lower, the light got warmer, the river calmer and my patience eventually paid off. Cloud drifted peacefully into the scene and broke into this marvellous pattern creating some beautiful reflections. It was right about the time with the sun in the optimum position that the one and only boat I saw all afternoon churned it's way down the river but as I finished muttering expletives I realised I actually liked the effect and chose it over the reflection shots.

You'll find more of my images from Norfolk here

So there you have it, my latest new and not so new work. As always I'd love to know what you think, either here or on my Facebook page.

 

The National Trust Neptune campaign

International Garden Photographer of the Year 2015 is open for entries

International Garden Photographer of the Year exhibition