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Surrounded By Blue, The Harsh Beauty Of Midday Light

Surrounded By Blue, The Harsh Beauty Of Midday Light

I recently rediscovered this image in my archive and decided to give it some TLC and publish it here.
It was taken near Gaios, on the island of Paxos while on a boat tour in the summer of 2006
I would not state this image as a particularly amazing piece of creative travel photography in fact the image was simply a grab shot
to look back upon and enjoy as a memory of our trip.

Never Shoot In The Midday Sun.

If you critiqued this image you probably say the lighting here is a little bland (it’s overhead) and pretty harsh in contrast (it’s a fairly cloudless summer sky) and certainly not the time of day that most photographers including myself would choose to produce creative travel photography.

However, I’ve always said there is no such thing as bad light it just depends on your personal style or what you decide works for a particular image or a clients brief.
On the plus side, in this image, that same bland hard light gives some amazing punch to those blues which for me are a strong signature of Greece along with incredible mountains and historic sites of interest.

Once again we see that rules (or guidelines) are often there to be broken and even encouraged for creativity especially when it comes to photography.

If you want to see some wonderful images by a master photographer who is often known for their use of razor-sharp light and contrast I’d recommend checking out Albert Watson’s work especially the images in his wonderful book Cyclops.

 

 

White Greek Chapel Surrounded By Blue Sea, Paxos Greece

Life In A Somerset Landscape Photography Project

Life In A Somerset Landscape Photography Project

A Somerset Photography project started back in 2012.

I started Life in a Somerset Landscape as a personal project with the aim to capture various people and wildlife in the Somerset landscape.

The images are inspired by the county I grew up in and in which I learnt my craft starting back in the late 1980s

I’ve always been drawn and somewhat intrigued by the history of the land and the people who work it and wildlife that lives there so the project simply evolved from that.

The images are approached by me either simply documenting what I discover while others are created to produce a vision I have for that particular location or person within it.
The project is ongoing as I have time to pick it up and continue.

View project Life in a Somerset Landscape

Do you know of someone or somewhere in Somerset that you feel should be included? Please email me and let me know. simon@simonplant.co.uk

Mud-horse-fisherman-hinkley-point-lifestyle-photography

Mud-horse-fisherman-Hinkley point

Swan Taking Off Over Somerset River

Swan Flying Over Somerset River

Banjo-player-maize-field

Banjo player maize field

 

 

Location Photographer. A Passion For Colour

Location Photographer. A Passion For Colour

I started out like many photographers of a certain age shooting, developing and printing Black & White Images.
Even though I can fully appreciate the beauty of monochrome my real passion has always been for colour work inspired by many
of my favourite 80’s advertising location photographer heroes like John Claridge, Duncan Sim and Peter Lavery (google em kids).
So this is a rare occasion when I decided the subject worked far better in B&W.

Location-in-photography-tree-in-plighted-field-somerset

Video Production In Somerset, Somerset Uncovered At Burrow Hill

Video Production In Somerset, Somerset Uncovered At Burrow Hill

Burrow Hill is a location I know very well and I’ve photographed here many times including from the air.
On this occasion, I wanted to revisit for my video project Somerset Uncovered.

We have recently had a spell of very settled warm weather but clear blue skies are not what was required for this shoot.
A few days ago my careful watch on the weather forecast promised another hot day but with cloud moving in later in the evening which sounded perfect for the shoot.
I already knew where the sun would be positioned for my composition so it was just a case of planning my timings.

One of the things I dislike about Time-lapse is that some objects like too much foreground foliage can move rather quickly.
This can not only be distracting but also ruin the tranquillity and graceful pace of the skies and light that sometimes dances across the landscape.
Therefore careful composition to avoid these elements or clever post-production is required.

Unlike shooting stills and retouching in Photoshop this can be a lot trickier when working with moving elements but I do love a challenge!

Moving Mountains, Travel Photography Portfolio The Gumbet Windmills

Moving Mountains, Travel Photography Portfolio The Gumbet Windmills

I’d been told about this spot and the windmills many times while visiting my holiday home in Turkey.
Eventually, during one trip, I decided it was time that I grabbed my gear and checked this local landmark out and combine a little travel and landscape photography

It was a beautiful hot evening and the light was just starting to dip behind the mountains and I was keen to add the image to my travel photography portfolio.
I have to be honest after all the hype I was a little disappointed with the location when I arrived.

There were several windmills on the edge of the hillside and due to the shape of the hill I had to be closer to the windmills than I would have preferred.
This meant that the beautiful mountains and bay below were extremely obstructed by some of the windmills and the contour of the hillside.
At around this time, I was producing lots of video tutorials for a training site I owned. 

I decided I would take the opportunity to use some clever photographic and post-production techniques to create a more pleasing view and also create a video of how I achieved this for the sites members.
After some careful thought, I decided that if I moved the sea and mountains up higher into the scene and did some clean up ( remove a ropy looking windmill )this would produce a panoramic scene I knew would look stunning in the evening light.
So not an image that the purists would enjoy but one that satisfied my experience of the place even if I had to move mountains to achieve it!

Travel-and-photography-gumbet-windmllls-turkey

A Perch In The Storm

I found myself on the North Devon coast for a small shoot on Saturday.The weather was less than pleasant but I decided on the journey home to head across the top of Exmoor.
Sometimes harsh weather just suits a location and a damp Exmoor with low hanging cloud seemed to feel strangely perfect.
As I drove I spotted this crow sat on top of this tree and immediately new it had potential to make a great image.
Luckily I managed to pull over and grab my camera which was already set up on the rear seat. To my surprise the crow stayed in place perfectly just sat overlooking the bleak cliffs and coast and I managed to capture 6 or so frames before it got spooked and flew off.
Back in the days of film I would often shoot 1000 ASA Agfa RS film which was renown for it’s impressive grain especially when pushed to 2000 ASA and pushed in processing.
I decided in post to enhance the harsh atmosphere further by adding a copious helping of old school grain although not to the extent of the old Agfa stock!

Crow-in-winter-tree-along-exmoor-road-on-location-photographer