Some days just feel darker and more moody than others. This was taken on a beach in Scotland moments before the heavens opened and drenched what was not already wet. I had camped out close by the previous night to the rhythmic sound of crashing waves. Although sinister looking, the location was actually quite invigorating, especially when trapped by the concrete walls of London.
I drove around Harris on my first evening, looking for the right vantage point for an end of day shot. I spoke to a local farmer, who recommended an isolate beach situated on the far side of his land. Once there, I had the whole place to myself and perhaps one of the finest sunsets I have been fortunate enough to witness. The colours were so vibrant, the water looked like it was gold, lapping against my feet.
The day had been a mixture of rain and clouds. For landscape photography, this can either mean a really interesting cocktail of factors or a nightmare in the making. Alas, the rain had meant that the morning had been a write off. I travelled the length of the north coast of the Isle of Lewis without finding the right ingredients for a memorable image.
After scrutinising a map, I noticed an interesting coastline option that meant transversing a local farmer’s land. With no one around to ask for permission, I trekked the 2km to the beach and found the stormy, isolate image above. This image is a 100 second exposure using a 10 stop ND filter. The long exposure robbed the photograph of some of the colour. To counter this, I put my longer prime lens on my camera and took a 2 second shot of a section of the same scene.
Having had a succession of great weather days, the Scottish summer finally set in on my third day in the Isle of Harris and Lewis. I was up well before 4am and had been walking around the beach looking for a good spot to shoot from, without disturbing the sand. This shot was taken at just after 5am, just as I was about to give in. The rain had been gradually falling since dawn broke and I was sure that there would not be a decent image to capture under such circumstance. I am glad I persevered. The light in this picture is quite eerie but I like it.
Clouds rolled in at the last minute to obscure the setting sun over the tiny village of Ardroil, on the Isle of Lewis. I had this huge expanse of sand all to myself with the exception of the occasional dog walker. I had decided to camp a few miles away in a place called Kneep, to capture the 4am sunrise the following morning, which turned out to be an error for two reasons. Firstly, the Kneep campsite was pretty awful, especially in comparison to the wild camping at Ardroil. Secondly, the rain started to fall after the sun dropped and the next day was a wash out.
Earlier this year, I had the good fortune to spend a week in the Outer Hebrides, on the Isle of Harris and Lewis. This was taken on day one, very soon after I arrived at Huisinis. The clouds were just beginning to shift as the wind picked up. I was standing completely alone in this stunning landscape, with only flies and cattle to share the moment with.
Taken a few years ago on a Noblex 612 panoramic camera, this is a shot of a fishing boat on the beach of north western Zanzibar. The fishermen had finished for the day and there was a significant rainstorm on the horizon.
Last shot in the sequence from the previous weekend in Devon. An interesting outcrop of rocks, jutting into the sea, replete with seaweed on the Jurassic coast. This shot was taken facing south, with the sun setting 90 degrees to my right. The gentle evening colours were caught in the lower clouds on the horizon.
Stormy weather ahead.
The last vestiges of light were visible in the opalescent sky. Shortly after this shot was taken, the heavens opened and the rain did not stop for the next two days.
Believe it or not, this was taken on a very popular beach in Devon, just at a very unpopular time (i.e. moments before a torrential rain storm). Definitely worth it!