Cannon with National Monument at Night

Cannon with National Monument at Night

Here is a complex photograph that has been a few years in the planning stages. Firstly, I took a very similar picture on a lovely summer afternoon with a wider angle lens, but this caused a lot of distortion and the weathered colour and texture detail on the barrel of the cannon were far from apparent. So a set up at dusk was the order of the day, however I usually visit Edinburgh in June rather than December.

This December I was fortunate to return, with this as number two or three on my long list of photographs to shoot. I used an 18mm lens and a ten second exposure, obviously the camera was on a tripod. In the background we can see the National Monument which is lit by one massive floodlight. The cannon was very dark so I brought out the flash gun to fire a few bursts of artificial light at it. The tripod legs were spread extremely wide to give a sturdy but low view point and I wanted to create an even and “unflashed” look so chose to hand hold the flash as I moved around the cannon.

Scarfell Peak at Dusk

Scarfell Peak at Dusk

After a slightly disappointing sunset Kay and I headed back to the car. Looking back up to the “Pikes of Sca Fell” I saw this scene. The sun had gone down behind the mountains behind us, but was still lighting up the clouds above the pikes. This is the highest mountain in England and I wish to finally climb it next summer all being well.

Blackpool Sea Front at Dusk

Blackpool Sea Front at Dusk

This was taken as a test photograph. I was testing my camera on a long exposure and checking my manual focus was giving me a sharp image, waiting for the sun to go down and for the International Firework Competition to start. In my opinion this is probably my favorite “happy accident” photograph that I have put on this website. I would love to do more night photography around Blackpool, not just of the fireworks but also the Illuminations, and more of the tower and the three piers. I believe dusk is the best time to photograph a lot of things but certainly the best time of day when it comes to the town of Blackpool.

Calm Seas on Abersoch Beach at Dusk

Calm Seas on Abersoch Beach at Dusk

A lead in line is one of the principles of photography and artistic composition which many photographers look for, especially when it comes to landscapes. The lead in line usually goes from the lower right corner and leads the viewers eye into the image. Whilst walking back down the beach and back to where I was staying, I noticed that the tiny waves were making lovely lead in lines. In an ideal world they would lead to something photogenic, like a colourful old boat for example, but in this case not so much. Still I felt that it was worth sharing, if only to demonstrate the idea of lead in lines in composition.