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To say we only spent a few short hours at Elgol I certainly reaped a great crop of images, saying that it will be a long time before we return such is the drive. Sunset skies over the Cuillins certainly drive home the intensity of the scars down the distant mountains.
Got more commissions to start doing research for, 3 new locations and a band wanting something a little bit different so will need an awesome location, one of which I have in mind and time permitting will scope out this weekend.
have a great day
Wet and windy Wednesday here in Yorkshire….so I thought a nice wet and windy shot from Skye would be in order.
This one from Elgol looking across to the Cuillin range, Elgol is on the shores of Loch Scavaig towards the end of the Strathaird peninsula.
This was the scene of our run in with the team of sheep and the shepherd photography teacher, looking back it was so funny and I could imagine a TV comedy about how the teacher herded his attendees round from location to location having run in after run in with jobbing photographers. We were crouched down next to the jetty wall on the left when this guy came storming down calling us ignorant blah blah blah, they were all lined up some 50m away to the left so we were only in shot if stood up, they were there 30-40mins we in turn took a mere 10mins, some people need to learn they don’t own these locations. We were again berated as we left by a full on Irish man, I did not have a clue what he was saying but with our patience run dry I informed him where best to go, he didn’t reply so I guess he got the message, the rest of the shoot was uneventful other than being stunningly beautiful………and breath!
Walking up to The Old Man of Storr on the beautiful Isle of Skye I had to take my now usual “fat boy” stop to catch my breath and as I turned to look back this is the view I was greeted with. Very Gothic in its appearance The Storr forms an imposing feature overlooking Portree.
The walk up is set as medium length and medium difficulty taking an hour and a bit to get somewhere near the area of this shot and certainly a lot quicker back down, quite steep in sections so not really for the unfit. It’s probably one of the busiest walks on Skye and although we were fairly early going up coming down there were hoards of visitors climbing up, the car park was overflowing and on covering the main road for quite some distance.
Certainly one of those places I would recommend visiting, the earlier in the day the better I think to avoid too many tourists.
Happy Monday all,
sun is shining and what a sunrise it was, pity I went to the gym after pooch walking otherwise I’d have been in The Peaks for a toggging session, yes I said Togging! thats before Pon says anything.
Another from Skye, Elgol looking across to The Cuillins as the sun set on our first night up there, got my feet wet but hey it’s worth it right? Still quite a lot to process so I think I have a great start to the book.
Be nice to have this weather all week.
Well it’s Friday at least and i thought I’d round the week off with pt2 of The Quiraing.
After a brief drive from Uig we were greeted with the Quiraing bathed in this beautiful morning light, after making a right turn from the main road and passing the cemetery there is a car park high up on the left, a short walk leads you to this magnificent site. The Quiraing contains features such as The Needle, The Prison and The Table, the surrounding terrain seems to be a never ending area of beautiful green landscape. Well trodden patch scar the landscape in various directions. Well worth a visit should you venture this far north.
Have a great weekend
The Quiraing – various pronunciations, non better than a local but I couldn’t understand anything then it’s a little like Kerrang you know the rock music channel/mag.
On our second morning we were heading from our overnight camp at Uig on the West coast of Skye across to Climb the Old Man of Storr, I spotted the sign for The Quiraing and could see the light was perfect, realising The Old Man of Storr would take time to climb and that the light would change I decided we’d do The Quiraing early while it was bathed in early morning sun.
Its a simple drive to a car park which is situated near the top and following a leisurely stroll across a path you gain the ideal position, nice to have an easy one for a change I thought and as the morning light failed to disappoint we were thankful for the decision to stop here first.
Bit from Wiki
The Quiraing is a landslip on the eastern face of Meall na Suiramach, the northernmost summit of the Trotternish on the Isle of Skye, Scotland. The whole of the Trotternish Ridge escarpment was formed by a great series of landslips; the Quiraing is the only part of the slip still moving, the road at its base, near Flodigarry, requires repairs each year.
Parts of the distinctive landscape have earned particular names. The Needle is a jagged 120-foot (37 m) high landmark pinnacle, a remnant of landslipping. Northwest of it is The Table, a flat grassy area slipped down from the summit plateau, with vistas of the Torridon Hills and the mountains of Wester Ross. Southwest is the Prison, a pyramidal rocky peak which can look like a medieval keep when viewed from the right angle – the ascent of this is an airy scramble.
Quiraing (in Gaelic, Cuith-Raing) comes from Old Norse Kvi Rand, which means Round Fold. Within the fold is The Table, an elevated plateau hidden amongst the pillars. It is said that the fold was used to conceal cattle from Viking raiders.
Todays image still from Skye is a classic view of Neist Point, definitely stood in tripod holes from other photographers and I make no excuses for this as 2″ in front of me was a few hundred feet drop onto the rocks below. But as the book is based on classic UK shots amongst other things this suits perfectly.
Was a pretty good sunset albeit very brief as winter ones are with the addition of a bitter wind freezing your extremities, my Russian hat was a must (may look silly) but who cares, I’d rather be warm than fashionable.
iPhone picture courtesy of my very able assistant Chris Phillips
After carrying out initial location searches I finished up at the cliff edge in the most dangerous of positions, which is about normal for me these days but it’s the only way to get “that shot” and so must be done.
Once settled down for the sunset we were joined by the throngs of other photographers and workshops…..always amazes me how we are first there and last to leave, I never go until I am 200% satisfied that nothing else will happen, I have learnt from driving away then seeing a salmon pink sky in my rear view causing me to curse my misfortune!
Anyway as we completed our shoot and the other photographers had left we spent a last few moments soaking up what must be once of the most beautiful views on Skye, I’ve been here before and seen the majestic sea eagle and pods of whales are known to frequent the area too.
After leaving we spent a while pondering whether to wait for sunrise or head back to Barnsley…………at 3am Sunday I rolled into my house with the best greeting a man could have, a loving and very understanding wifey and 4 huskies all wanting a cuddle, it doesnt get any better than this.
Second shot of the Skye series, the wondrous Fairy Pools with their beautiful tinted waters, gentle cascading falls and other worldly backdrop…….
Hmmm what they fail to tell you is that they are darn near impossible to find, getting their would entail getting absolutely soaked battling gale force winds and sleet like rain in your face and for lord knows what reason the wind and rain changes direction for when you are making your exit just to make matters worse and all this on top of a 9 hour drive…….
Well worth it I’d say!
We met countless couples/groups walking back down the path from the mountains who all had one question on their lips “where the hell is the fairy pool on the pictures?”, we quickly deduced they weren’t on the path and after what seemed an eternity of getting blasted with freezing wind lashed rain a slight glance to the right and our way back down gave us our goal…The Fairy Pools near Glenbrittle at the foot of the Black Cuillin Mountains on the Isle of Skye in the Highlands of Scotland.
We were quickly joined by other realising we’d struck gold and had to endure people in jeans and trainers standing ankle deep in the waters, fortunately they realised we were on a mission and graciously stepped aside when asked.
As for me and Chris we were wrapped up with all the right gear and had a great couple of hours stomping all over Glen Brittle and came away with our goal.
A shot of The Fairy Pool
had a very busy and eventful weekend away on the Isle of Skye doing the book shoot North West start. Chris and myself set off at 2am Friday and drove the 450miles northwards, fast forward 9 hours and we were at our first stop, this being the Fairy Pools (picture to follow), very tired but when you’re greeted with the eventual view of the Pools all weariness disappears and excitement takes over, I’ll do a full eventful story on the pools later.
Todays image is from Elgol looking across to The Cuillin range, eventful it was as we were being stalked by a group on a photo tour workshop of some description, unfortunately the tutor if that is what he was had his group of about 10 (way more than he could possibly deal and be personable with) all lined up and proceeded to hurl abuse if you got anywhere near in front of his sheep, I mean punters!. after an brief exchange of words I think mine and Chris’s blunt Yorkshire approach made him see the futility of pursuing any further conflict, and he moved away rapidly.
Anyway this shot one of many to follow was actually shot with my 70-200 lens from the car park, below the shot were a line of said tutors sheep, I mean clienst all taking the same shot, When I teach a workshop I actively encourage the guys to explore and attempt even at a location as popular as this to find a position of their own to give a certain degree of individuality, after all it’d be pretty boring seeing the exact same shot over and over wouldn’t it?. This team followed us round to our last shoot at Nest Point and again all lined up like sheep for the same shot, a great way to teach is a small group that you can give your time to and the client feels they are receiving your personal attention when they need it and so learn from you, large groups just make you money not friends.
Loads more to follow
Ah the weekend and what a week it’s been, firstly a massive thank you for the print sales 11, so special thanks to Keith and Kerry Buckley and Karen Fisher and 3 others, always very much appreciated.
The Puppy Christmas cards have hit the ground running to 16 sets sold this week, big thanks to Karen, Brian, Janet, Sarah, Debra, Sally Anne, Nichola and Kerry, again very much appreciated. SALES STILL BEEN TAKEN, email me with requirements 1 x 8 Pack £6 plus postage inc envelopes
This weekend will be spent getting the kit ready for a commercial shoot next Wednesday and then we’re off to Skye for 5 shoots in 2 days, well it’s early and I mean very early Friday morning set off and then return Sunday, fortunately I have Chris with me who is now assisting me with the book and subsequent shoots.
Today’s image , well what can I say, “Bend with the breeze”, a big lesson to learn and one I have never been good at, still not that good at it which is probably why I work for myself but certainly in some areas I believe I have vastly improved my skills at going with the flow, those lessons were learned at Mountain Rescue medical and will probably be with me all my days, my Christmas cards for Mountain Rescue are on sale HERE and are well worth the money, proceeds going to help a great cause.
Have a great weekend all