As summer has come to an end and Autumn rears its head we have started to put our garden to bed for another year. I have enjoyed our garden this summer, it had good colour, shape and scents, the roses were lovely and are still in bloom though the flowers are smaller now. And into the garden have crept ‘the spiders’ every where you look there is a web of one size or another. Every day it is a torment to walk up the garden to the bin, spider webs strung across the path from the shed to the tree to the washing line and there in the middle at face height, ‘the spider’ waits to snag you and make you scream like a girl! I have watched them grow fat on flies, starting as tiny things now they are huge monsters, fat and hairy ready to crawl on the unwary. I can see the beauty in their homes, those lacy webs sparkling in the morning dew but oh heavens what lurks in the middle to some is beauty but to me is just one big ugly splat! I am now waiting for the gardener to come and finish pruning and pulling, planting and tidying because I AM NOT GOING OUT THERE WHILE ITS FULL OF SPIDERS no how no way, full stop! I have managed, with a body guard, to photograph these eight legged scary arachnids, i hope you enjoy the pictures i certainly didn’t really enjoy taking them 😉
Having been really busy all week Chris and I escaped the family and wandered down to a local park in West Kirby, Ashton Park, http://www.ashtonpark.btck.co.uk/History/AfullerHistoryofAshtonPark as i wanted to try out my new camera.
I have exchanged my Nikon D3100 for a Nikon D7000 and i am really excited about using it, there are lots of new buttons to learn 🙂 and remember. This camera does trip me up though as i keep forgeting to put back the memory card as it doesnt tell you that there is no card in the slot 😦 and i took some lovely photos the other night of the sunset without a memory card, luckily the following evening was a similar sunset, this time with a memory card!
Anyway getting back to our wanderings, we wandered down to the park on a lovely sunny day. I took some photos of the trees, then we wandered down to the lake and i took some photos of the birds and while we were chatting to a waitress at the coffee bar she let slip that it was the Wilson Trophy on Marine Lake. Last year we had stumbled upon the race and i had taken some great photos with a Nikon D60 that i had borrowed, this year i had my own camera and a 55-200mm lens which did the job nicely. We have had ideal conditions for the racing this weekend and there were plenty of nail biting moments. Wessex Exempt won the trophy, well done Ben Ainslie and his team. http://www.wksc.net/wilsontrophy/
So we have had the longest day and it is getting darker earlier as we head into winter. Did i get my ultimate autumnal photograph? Well in a word NO! I have looked and looked, there have been some beautiful trees here on the Wirral but they were in totally the wrong places. I would drive along the road and see lovely colour, yellow, gold, brown, red but at the side of a boring road or in someones front garden where it made an uninspiring image. So i will have to be content with the images i have managed to get and wait 12 months for next autumn. I gave it a good shot and tried different places and these are what i think are my best.
There are others i could choose but i like these, especially the leaves. I am now going to turn my camera lens towards Winter images, so bring on the cold, frosty mornings, oh yes and the snow!
Sunday and Chris and I are off driving around Wirral on a lovely sunny day, we wanted to find the flavors of Autumn, the colour, the crispness, the floaty leaves, the beautiful reflections. Cough cough, can someone tell the trees in Wirral its time!
We went to Rabymere, its owned by the Angling Society people so you cant walk around it and anyway the trees were still green, we went to Dibbinsdale Nature Reserve, green trees, we went to Portsunlight in Bromborough, better but not great, we went to Caldy (mega rich big houses, i could tell you its where my Dad grew up but the wrong impression would be gained. He did grow up there but was the gardeners son 😉 ) We went to Arrowe Park which was also ok. BUT not what i wanted. Am i too early for autumnal colour? Will it happen or is it going to be a ‘damp squib’, come on trees put on your Autumnal shades, Canada and America will not outdo us! anyway i can’t afford to go there just now. I think i will leave it a little longer and try again, you never know it may be we are just having a late Autumn.
If that is so, one thing, why are the trees alongside the roads changing colour? Pollution?
I had an urge to escape the mad house i call home, i craved the peace and quiet of my own company, a letting go of the responsibility of being a wife, mother, carer. So i grabbed my camera and my new tripod, the other one fell to pieces after only a few months. Side line, i bought a Manfrotto tripod which is pretty neat. And i headed down to Gilroy Rd nature reserve.
Over the last 12 months or so i have been photographing specific scenes there, a gate which i find fascinating, a stand of trees, the pond, all at different times of the year and using varying techniques. The sun was shining and it was a lovely day, not overly hot or cold either, the sky was a deep blue and the clouds interesting shapes, how i was looking forward to solitude and my own company. First up was the gate, i had decided to try a multiple exposure HDR technique as i was pretty sure it would look really great and just as i am setting up for the shot, well lets just say all of the dogs on my side of the Wirral decided to take their owners for a walk. I HATE taking photos when people are watching me, i feel like my privacy is being violated, so i waited and taking my time took the shot, sounds like a cereal killer 😉
I dont know about anyone else but when i am in photographer mode i look at things in a different way, all of a sudden even the smallest of things took on a different view and i was quickly taking photos of anything that took my eye. I wandered down paths and around bends stopping at interesting views and looking at the wildlife flashing past too fast for me to photograph. I was so enjoying the peace and tranquility that i was very startled when a young lad walked around the bend in the path carrying his fishing gear, nearly tripping over me as i am kneeling down, butt up, trying to focus my camera. I dont know who was more embarrassed, me or him! It turns out a dozen lads had decided that the day was too good to waste on computer games and thought it a good idea to fish the pond, even though they know, im sure, that the pond is a no fishing pond. Still, they were not disturbing anyone other than the fish and i dont think they were all that successful anyway.
Several wonderful hours later i wandered back home to my responsibilities again, i felt so much better after my ME time and i knew i had several good shots, i only had to pries my laptop from a childs hot sweaty hands and i could transfer them off my memory card and ooh and ahh over the images. I decided to use photomatix to merge the images and photoshop to tweak them, its an ongoing thing but i am very happy with what i got out of the afternoon. Below is a sample of my work, there are other images on my flickr page http://www.flickr.com/photos/klawrenceuk/ if you want to see them through the year, I hope you enjoy them, if you do, or not, please leave a comment.