Yorkshire Dales

Friday Image No. 105

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Scalber Force, Settle, The Yorkshire Dales.
Scalber Force, Settle, The Yorkshire Dales.

I love this waterfall. It’s called Scalber Force and is just outside of Settle in the Yorkshire Dales. I actually shot this image back in April and in colour it doesn’t look good. But converted to Blakc and White it seems to work ok.

It seems though as if I were there just yesterday. I can’t believe that Summer has been and gone. I think I need to get out more.

Have a great weekend everyone.

Friday Image No.90

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Sunset view in the Yorkshire Dales from above Malham. Sony A7r + Canon 24-70 lens at 24mm. ISO 100, f/16.0, 1/15" shutter. Tripod mounted with a 0.3 ND graduated filter on the sky.
Sunset view in the Yorkshire Dales from above Malham. Sony A7r + Canon 24-70 lens at 24mm. ISO 100, f/16.0, 1/15″ shutter. Tripod mounted with a 0.3 ND graduated filter on the sky.

I was pulling a late one tonight and was so tied up with getting some urgent work done, I almost forgot to post the Friday Image. This was shot last Saturday in the Yorkshire Dales. It’s hard to believe this was almost a week ago. Time really does fly when you’re having fun.

Have a great weekend everyone.

The Secret to Great Landscape Photography

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Dent Viaduct in the Yorkshire Dales. Rare perfect conditions for Landscape Photography. Sony A7r + Canon 24-70mm lens. ISO100, f/16.0, 1/60", Tripod and 0.3 ND Grad filter.
Dent Viaduct in the Yorkshire Dales. Rare perfect conditions for Landscape Photography. Sony A7r + Canon 24-70mm lens. ISO100, f/16.0, 1/60″, Tripod and 0.3 ND Grad filter.

A recent trip to the Yorkshire Dales really drove home the importance of this secret. See if you can guess what it is as you read my outline of the trip. Read closely enough and there are a couple of lessons in there.

The first day was Friday and from the moment we arrived the rain set in. It was the sort of fine, persistent rain that gets everywhere and soaks you through. This continued well into the night, but this wasn’t a wasted day as we spent the time driving around some of the locations we would shoot. Partly in the hope that the weather might break but mainly so we could scout the locations and know what to expect the coming day.

Saturday came and the first sunrise location was a great success. Had we not visited this the day before we would have struggled to get into position in the dark due to the fence that had been placed across the path. It had been predicted to rain later in the day but that didn’t appear and the sky was filled with white fluffy clouds and broken sun. These are perfect conditions for Landscapes and the day was filled with great photo opportunities from sunrise to sunset.

Sunday started with high hopes for a sunrise as the forecast was clear of rain until lunch time. Unfortunately, there was no cloud, only clear blue sky. The sun came up and within a 10 minutes was too harsh to create a good image. Later in the morning clouds appeared and the light began to soften, making appealing images possible. The afternoon did cloud over so we made the switch to a waterfall location.

Monday started with high winds but the sky had well defined with fast moving cloud. There were fleeting rain showers with some shafts of light. Although we had initially planned to visit a ruined Abbey, the light was so good we thought we would landscape again. The conditions were very challenging with rain getting on the camera lens constantly and the high winds made it difficult to capture a steady exposure. We responded to the conditions by shooting a couple of waterfalls in secluded locations where we could find shelter.

In summary, this was a great trip and very productive despite challenging weather conditions. We visited a large number of locations and captured a variety of shots. The secret to this that I mentioned in the title is planning.

What really dictates the quality of your results is not the light but the weather. Weather is the largest influence on the light. Although you can’t control the weather, you respond to it. If you live in a climate with frequently changing and challenging conditions (I would say most of the UK), you will be at the mercy of the weather so you had better prepare.

Different weather produces different lighting conditions, and not all conditions are good for every landscape subject. Weather conditions can also be very challenging such as the high winds we encountered. The trick to making a success of your time is to switch to shooting subjects that make the most of the weather conditions. Whilst the light on the Monday was superb for large landscape shots, the wind made this impossible so we found shelter. Dull, overcast conditions were ideal for waterfalls but not landscapes. Equally, broken sun was ideal for the large landscape view but made shooting waterfalls tricky. I’m sure you get the idea.

You can’t change the weather, only react to it. This is why I say planning is essential. Had we not had plans and options for different locations, we wouldn’t have been able to respond to the conditions. We wouldn’t have known where the waterfalls were so we couldn’t have switched location. We wouldn’t have found the best views. We wouldn’t have known where to go for the best sunset and sunrise locations. If you don’t make plans and have alternatives you could find yourself wasting a lot of time.

Normal Service Will Resume Shortly

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Limestone above Malham just after sunrise. Sony A7r + Canon 24-70 lens. Set to 24mm, ISO100, F/16.0, shutter speed 0.4".
Limestone above Malham just after sunrise. Sony A7r + Canon 24-70 lens. Set to 24mm, ISO100, F/16.0, shutter speed 0.4″.

This is a quick note to say sorry to everyone waiting on a reply to email. I have been away for a Landscape shoot and without internet access. Normal service will resume shortly and here is one of the images from the shoot in the interim.

Friday Image No.65

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Waterfall at Keld in the Yorkshire Dales. Olympus EM5, ISO200, f/4.5, 13". Lee Little Stopper filter for the long exposure.
Waterfall at Keld in the Yorkshire Dales. Olympus EM5, ISO200, f/4.5, 13″. Lee Little Stopper filter for the long exposure.

I love Friday’s. It’s the one time in the week when I feel that I can justify working on any image that I like in order to share it with people. I don’t need to care if it’s what people want, all that matters is that I like it. That’s an incredibly liberating feeling as a photographer.

Despite this sentiment, I still hope that you like the image. Have a great weekend everyone.

Friday Image No. 64

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Olympus EM5, f/6.3, 35 seconds per image, 4 images blended in Lightroom to give the panoramic. Post production with Nik and Alien Skin Exposure 7
Olympus EM5, f/6.3, 35 seconds per image, 4 images blended in Lightroom to give the panoramic. Post production with Nik and Alien Skin Exposure 7. Click the image to enlarge.

It’s another waterfall image this week I’m afraid. This is one of the falls at Keld in the Yorkshire Dales. The weather wasn’t too kind but it doesn’t usually matter when shooting waterfalls or forests. In fact I like the wet weather for this type of scene as it makes the foliage glow with colour. Much better than the contrasty scene a bright sunny day would create.

Hope you like the image and have a great weekend.