This Photography Lark..


 I’ve always liked this photo: the light caught by the raindrop and shining through the leaves, the finest filament of spider silk and the bokeh, courtesy of water droplets on the surrounding plants.

I could tell you that I spent hours setting it up, making many fine adjustments to the settings on the camera. Or I could be honest. Last October we were walking up the drive when it started to rain, a short sharp shower. As the sun came out again I spotted the dripping Cornus tree. The shot was a complete and utter fluke. Hand held, no tripod, point and shoot mode, taken while slithering down wet clay on the 45 deg slope. I didn’t expect it to even be in focus. A tribute to the quality of the camera and nothing whatsoever to do with me, aside perhaps from a steady hand.

Thank you for all your kind comments on the photographs in the previous post. They were a team effort and I thought I should take time out to give credit where it’s due. There are shots on the blog from both of us individually but the majority of them Mike and I take together. I may have an idea of what I need for a particular post and possibly how to compose it, but it is Mike who has the real skill and technical expertise with the camera.



Lilium superbum

One of his finest.


In the middle of a wood light levels can fall way short of optimum. The small and simple flowers which I love are apt to waft on their delicate stems given the merest hint of a breeze. To check the quality of a photograph it really needs to be viewed full screen on a computer. In the garden Mike tends to leave the camera set up wherever it may happen to be and we return to the house, memory card in hand. Sometimes that’s quite a long walk. Especially when it’s clear we need to take a picture again. And again. At one point last week my long suffering other half was heard to mutter “we’ve taken over a hundred shots and so far banked two..” It’s probably not the most efficient way of proceeding and consumes an incredible amount of time.



Mike’s favourite assignment (not) is the series of photographs of the terraces we have been doing this year.

The author of this blog has the fanciful idea that come December she can create a slideshow of these monthly shots. Imagine them fading one into the other, the permanent structures providing a constant backdrop so only the planting appears to change. Could be quite cool? To achieve this, obviously, each picture needs to be taken from EXACTLY the same spot. It may sound easy. It’s virtually impossible. Mike is threatening to put three blobs of paint on the path where the tripod needs to go..



But even then variables would remain. Distance of the camera up from the ground, the degree of tilt and the extent of the zoom. The stone walls of the terraces, the house, the bare bones of the over-enthusiastically pruned yew, none of them should move within the space of a month. And yet somehow they always do.

I’m reliably informed it’s only 11 days till the next photograph in this series, at the end of the month. I didn’t know he was counting.