Felicitous Friday

Graveyard and view

f/11, 1/30, 33mm, ISO 100, .6 hard ND grad, circ. polariser

Last year, Jenifer Bunnett and I went out ‘shooting’ together most weeks and Tuesday eventually became our regular day.  This year, we have added a second day, Friday.  So far, our Fridays have proved felicitous and we have been blessed with interesting light. Today was no exception.  An early morning hike up St. Martha’s Hill brought some glancing rays and the remains of the previous night’s snowfall. The evening’s sunset at Newlands Corner yielded an interesting cloud formation over distant St. Martha’s Hill, where we had been in the morning.  As with last Friday, I have a lot of images to process and will share some more over the next few days.

Landscape after sunset

f/11, 0.8sec, 24mm, ISO 100, .6 hard ND grad

Catching up on my 365 redux project, 365/30 is a shot from this day in 2011, seeds of the wild clematis, also known as Old Man’s Beard or Traveller’s Joy. 365/29 is from 2009; the colour version was one of the first images I licensed with Getty and it has done well for me over the years.

wild clematis seeds


grave stone


Weather repeats itself

Send water meadows


Today we have had dramatic skies, glancing light and scattered showers, the sort of changeable weather that landscape photographers love. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to go out and capture it. But, on this day last year, we had exactly the same weather, and I was lucky enough to be out in it then. Here are three pictures from that very enjoyable day out in the water meadows and on the Wey Navigation towpath near Send, Surrey.

Surrey landscape


Surrey landscape


My 365/27 is also in black and white, a picture of the orchard at RHS Wisley, taken on an unusually sunny 27th January 2009.

RHS wisley


The morning that just keeps giving

Wey Navigation

I am still going through my files from Friday’s epic dawn shoot. I have enough to keep me going for quite a while. I hope this top one conveys something of the post-dawn tranquility I experienced on the banks of the Wey Navigation between Newark and Ripley.

Surrey landscape

This second image was actually taken much later in the same day, nearer to sunset. The frost was mostly gone but there was a subtle hint of mist in the distance. I was attracted to the way the grass was catching the light; the crow on the fence was the icing on the cake. I just had time for one exposure before it flew away.

By complete contrast, my 365/26 is from this day in 2009. I had gone into Guildford with a friend, to do some shopping. My camera was an encumbrance I could have done without but the demands of 365 made me bring it, albeit reluctantly. I snapped these tulips, and it really is a snap. But, when I shared it on Flickr, it caught Getty’s eye and became one of the first images in my stock portfolio.



As I promised only to post images never before shared, or to re-edit old ones, I have added a light vignette to this and some extra clarity. Cheating? Maybe, but it’s the only file I could find!



Deer in frost

wey navigation

Another picture from Friday’s fantastic, frosty day out.  As I was taking a landscape shot,  two deer took flight across the meadow.  Of course, my wide lens hadn’t a hope of catching them, but I quickly changed to my 70-200mm lens and hoped I’d find more.  Luckily, I did.

wey navigation

Yesterday, I shared the colour version of this shot, also from Friday but I rather like this tinted black and white edit too.   And it is a handy segue from frost to black and white to my 365/25, from this day in 2009:




Perfect morning

Surrey landscape

Yesterday morning, I had a chance to capture dawn over Newark Priory. It’s a shot I’d had in my mind for about 5 years and the conditions were perfect. For more about Newark Priory, see here.

Afterwards, I pottered about on the Wey Navigation towpath and collected some wintery shots.  I am writing a book about the Navigation and these shots should fit nicely. Altogether, a successful morning’s shooting.

Wey Navigation

Wey Navigation


My 365/23 is from last year.  Three modes of transport, four if feet count (there’s a pedestrian on the footbridge).  Taken at the junction of the Wey Navigation and the Basingstoke Canal. For a fuller post about this shoot and the history of this location, click here.

Surrey landscape


365/24 is from 2010, a brief moment of good light at the end of what had been a grey, uninspiring day.  This is the Millennium Glasshouse at RHS Wisley.

Garlic, twice

two garlic bulbs


By 22nd January 2009, I was resorting to food for my 365.  Two garlic bulbs, edited and shared twice, in 2009 and now.

My photography is mainly outdoors, where I am happiest.  But, although I don’t tend to make still life images (perhaps you can tell!), I very much admire the work of others in this genre.  It seems to me, the best still life photographers have not only a superb technical knowledge of photography and lighting, but also a designer’s eye.  Respect.

Painshill revisited

Cobham, Surrey

f/11, 2.5″, 16mm, ISO 50

This day last year, I was at Painshill Park, in Cobham, Surrey, a restored eighteenth century landscape garden.

Painshill Park, Cobham

f/5, 1/40, 35mm, ISO 400

One of Painshill’s famous follies, the Gothic Temple, is seen above, reflected in one of the arches of the bridge. Below, another folly, the Ruined Abbey is situated picturesquely on the bank of the lake.

Cobham, Surrey

f/10, 1/250, 33mm, ISO 200

The image below is the only one I shared at the time.  Another folly appears with the Gothic Temple, the Chinese Bridge.

Cobham, Surrey

f/11, 2.5″, 16mm, ISO 50

Painshill’s working vineyard produces a nice sparkling white.

Cobham, Surrey

f/11, 0.3″, 16mm, ISO 50

Seen below, the Turkish Tent is another of Painshill’s follies.

For the techies, I used a .6 ND hard grad for these shots, and a circular polariser, of course. I have written several other posts about this favourite location of mine. Just click on the tags, Painshill or Painshill Park to find them.

folly at Painshill Park

f/11, 2.5″, 28mm, ISO 50

Eclectic entry

broken fence


My 365/20 entries are both from last year, taken on Desborough Island, an island in the River Thames near Weybridge.  I liked the way the tangled plants framed the gap in the fence.  The second shot seemed moodier in black and white.

Surrey landscape


My 365/19, also from last year, is a bit of fun, imagining what it would be like if we could actually see the stars above the junction of the A3 and the M25!

motorway at night


Newark Priory

Surrey landmark


I spent this afternoon teaching a student on the Wey Navigation towpath near Newark Priory. Imagine my surprise when I got home and started to look for today’s 365 redux image to find that on 18th January 2009 I was at exactly the same place! The Priory was founded in the 12th century by Augustinian Canons, also known as ‘Black Canons’ because of their black cloaks and cassocks. At one point, the prosperous Priory housed a community of 200.  Henry VIII had it sacked during the Dissolution of the Monasteries; according to one story, a cannon was placed on the hill above it to bombard the buildings.  It was subsequently plundered for its building materials and fell into ruin; all that is left now is part of the church. A Grade I Ancient Monument, the Priory was placed on the English Heritage Buildings at Risk register in 2007. I can’t offer an image of it from today as I do not make my own pictures when I am out with students. The original of this image (before the fancy editing) was featured as the cover of six local interest magazines in 2010.

Witch Hazel



Taken on this day last year, a close up of witch hazel blossom.  Hamamelis is a super shrub/small tree that flowers in January – March, depending on the variety.  I love the waxy petals, like orange peel.  They make hamamelis a very useful plant for adding winter colour to the garden. But the best thing of all is their spicy scent.