Category Archives: Photography

Meikleour Beech Hedge

This giant row of trimmed beech trees which lies ten miles north of Perth on the A93 is officially recognised as the tallest and longest hedge on earth. It was planted in 1745 and is now 530m long and 100ft high. Every ten years or so it is given a hard prune which takes four men around six weeks using a hydraulic lift and hand held cutting tools. This was last done in November 2019 so the bare branches of the hedge are very visible this winter.

Also posted in Countryside, Trees

Snow on the hills

We have had little snow this February and we miss it. So on a fine day in late February we visited the Glenshee ski area and the Linn of Dee just to experience the snow covered landscape.

Also posted in Countryside, Trees, Weather

January 2020 – colourful skies and snow

January 2020 brought clouds, some colourful skies at dawn and dusk and finally, late in the month, a morning of snow.

Also posted in Clouds, Countryside, Perth, Skies, Trees Tagged , , , |

MY ECLIPSE BATTLES

In the small hours of 21st January 2019 there was a total eclipse of the moon visible from where I live, weather permitting! It was forecast to be cloudy so I didn’t stay up but set an alarm for just before the greatest totality at 5.12am and then woke anyway. There was an eerie orange glow in the sky, no moon visible and then I saw it looking like a copper coloured planet, not the bright shining disc we normally see. An arresting sight. It had to be photographed but it was so dark: 30 seconds exposure as wide as my lens would open at ISO 100 – useless because of motion blur due to the relative movement of the moon and the earth. The ISO had to go up to 1000 to give a reasonably sharp but grainy image. I got a couple of pictures and hoped to do a sequence every 10 minutes until the eclipse ended – but clouds intervened. I almost gave up then the clouds partially parted and eventually I managed a reasonable sequence until just before the end of the eclipse when the moon disappeared behind thick cloud. I was groggy the next day and slow to function but it was worth it!


Also posted in Clouds, Science, Skies, Uncategorized, Weather Tagged , , |

SADLY PHOTOGRAPHY CAN RUIN AN ENVIRONMENT

In October 2015 I travelled to the Dolomites with friends and found the area both delightful to visit and lovely to photograph. One particularly charming location was the Val di Funes, an alpine valley with pretty farms, charming guest houses and small hotels catering for nature lovers and walkers.  Near the top of this valley lies the tiny church of St Johann in Ranui, a private chapel built in 1744, belonging to the Ranuihof farmstead. We parked in the car park by the farm, took many photos of the pretty church in its scenic location in front of the towering Geisler peaks and had lunch at the small hotel there.  They seemed glad of our custom. It was all very idyllic and quiet.  We saw 2 or 3 other people looking at the church in the hour or so we were around.

Two weeks ago I was excited to visit the Dolomites again but sadly the return visit to St Johann in Ranui was a shock. It is still possible to visit the church but it is now surrounded by electric ribbon fences keeping visitors to a narrow path which is creating a scar on the landscape. There were ‘no trespassing’ signs on the farm and people everywhere taking photos.  The locals have thoughtfully built a carpark and photographers’ viewing platform further down the valley but this was overwhelmed with visitors and as busy as a town on Christmas market day even though October is low season in the area.  There was a sweet sign asking people to keep off the meadow and I’m glad to say this was being respected, but the tranquility of the valley is no longer and the locals were clearly suffering from an invasion of photographers in far greater numbers than the landscape can stand. Being one of the invading photographers I feel bad about this and feel duty bound to make this post. I think I’ll stick to visiting more robust locations in future. 

The crowded potographers' platform The full carpark

Also posted in Countryside, Travel

PERTHSHIRE PHOTOGRAPHIC SOCIETY’S WILD SCOTLAND EXHIBITION AT BIRNAM ARTS

This month I am delighted to be taking part in Perthshire Photographic Society’s WILD SCOTLAND exhibition in the Birnam Arts Centre. These are my contributions. click on each photo to see it in better resolution. The exhibition is on until the end of September.

 

Also posted in Animals, Countryside, wildlife

FEBRUARY FLIGHT TO THE ARCTIC

Bodo

Bodo from the air

In eary February we spent a week in the Lofoten Archipelago in Arctic Norway.  The flights to get there were a joy with Norway shining in its snow coat below.

Also posted in Skies, Travel

MID WINTER SUNRISE

The sunrise on the 21st December was ordinary but on the morning of the 22nd there was thick mist and sunrise was dramatic and safe to photo using live view.

Also posted in Clouds, Perth, Skies

FROST CRYSTALS

We had a hard frost in mid December with still weather and wonderful ice crystals formed in my garden.

Also posted in Flowers, Perth

DECEMBER SKY COLOURS

The Days are short in December but there is often wonderful colour in the mornings before sunrise. This was early in the morning of 9th December.

Also posted in Clouds, Perth, Skies