Stories behind the Photos

Posted on December 3, 2021


Calendar 2022, the Misty beach shot.

I had a twitter comment from a customer about this years Calendar saying it is ….. “super. A slightly different take, (and) not too chocolate boxey.”

I really appreciate it when someone likes my work (naturally) but also  it is so satisfying when someone actually ‘gets it’, that is, when they appreciate my, (for want of a better word); ‘individual style’.

It’s alway hard to define yours, or any particular style especially as most styles are fluid and developing anyway, but I’ll take ‘not too chocolate boxey’, all day long.
I try to abandon cliches in my photography but without upsetting the balance too much, just giving visual weight to different aspects, which the viewer may have missed.
With climate change amongst us, I feel more urgency to document the natural world as it is now.

Here’s the February photo in the Calendar, taken 9th February 2021 (at 4.13pm) at Woolacombe beach.

It was during the last lockdown, there was low cloud and mist and it was in-between cold and mild, sort of mouldy-ish.

I had decided to mooch around the fabulous structure of Mortehoe church with my camera and tripod with ideas of misty gothic details and shadowy celtic crosses and all the other cliches you could imagine, but nothing was working, it was all a bit pretentious, so I decided to call it quits and slung my hook. Back to the village  and, as often happens at sunset, there was a calm settling in and a bit of the last light was breaking through the mist. It was a magic moment, no planning or setting up time it was classic on the hoof, street style, photography. This was one of only half a dozen shots taken, hand held, before the next bank of mist and darkness killed the scene.

It wasn’t until I got home and looked on the Mac that I noticed the person in the right third, stood on top the sand dune having a Titanic moment. This makes it for me.

It looks like a square crop would have been better until you see the figure, balance and visual weight, the trade off.

For the technical amongst you:

Fujifilm HX-1 with 50-140mm f2.8, taken at 140mm, f9, 1/7th second, IBIS and lens IBIS on.


And then there’s this one:

Old school. Three months for one photo….

I love the way trying to get shots for the Calendar pushes me outside my comfort zone. Autumn has so many cliches and I’ve fallen for every one here.  

This location on the East Lyn (nee Badgeworthy), I thought it showed potential early in October with plenty of moss, ferns, and oak but week after week visiting the same spot didn’t deliver, there was always something; river flow too much or too less, no light or rain, but surprisingly; no autumn colour, not until November. The dreaded stormy season when the fading leaves get shredded from their stalks.

So to finally get this shot was a small victory, but part of an ongoing project to take better photos of this beautiful planet so that future aliens, discovering our hot and dusty planet will realise how beautiful it was, once.


Here’s the composition that finally made it to print, still not perfect, but a fair reflection of the day.



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Thanks and gone