Weekly Photo Challenge: Depth

Another week and another challenge. Yesterday we spent some time in the National Park in search of snow. There’s no doubt we certainly found it including a “hairy moment” on the old road through Nant Ffrancon. More on that later. This weeks challenge was to portray depth in some way and so I’d like to start with a photograph from Llyn Padarn, taken yesterday from that famous viewing point on the stone bridge. Talking of that bridge it seemed like anyone who had a camera was there yesterday, including a coach load of tourists. As usual they were in a hurry to get “that photograph”. No thought for anyone else. Move over and let me take one….

Llyn Padarn

At the moment the water is really clear and you can see the stones in the lake bed easily.

Don’t look for “depth” but instead search for subject aspects which prove the presence of depth. – Andreas Feininger,

I mentioned a “hairy moment” earlier and here’s what happened. Rather than take the A5 from Bethesda to Llyn Ogwen I decide with my fellow photographers to take the old road that runs up the opposite side of Nant Ffrancon from the A5. All seemed well at first. Some snow, a little bit of ice, but easily navigable, especially with 4 wheel drive and as a bonus we came across some ponies grazing right at the side of the road.

Ponies

But back to that “hairy moment” Not much further up the road rises quite steeply. Seemed OK but suddenly we were slipping. Instead of driving in snow we were now in pure ice and it was not going good.

Icy Road

To cut a long story short we did manage to make it back down, thanks to my fellow photographers guiding me until I could find a safe turning point.

That’s it for this week. I hope you enjoyed the photographs.

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Room With A View

A room with a view. Well it would be if anyone bought it. The old lighthouse at Talacre beach has been up for sale for sometime but it does not look like there are any takers.

Talacre Sunset

It’s been a while since I was on Talacre, it’s my outdoor goto place when I want to try out any photographic techniques or new gear for that matter. So Saturday night, whilst my wife is watching football (soccer for my American readers), I took the new Olympus to the beach for my first test of HDR during sunsets. I’ve been to this beach loads of times and shot off hundreds of photographs of the lighthouse from all sorts of angles and times of the day.

Of all the means of expression, photography is the only one that fixes a precise moment in time. We play with subjects that disappear; and when they’re gone, it’s impossible to bring them back to life. We can’t alter our subject afterward…. Writers can reflect before they put words on paper…. As photographers, we don’t have the luxury of this reflective time….We can’t redo our shoot once we’re back at the hotel. Our job consists of observing reality with help of our camera (which serves as a kind of sketchbook), of fixing reality in a moment, but not manipulating it, neither during the shoot nor in the darkroom later on. These types of manipulation are always noticed by anyone with a good eye. – Henri Cartier-Bresson

Now Henry was probably right at the time but in todays modern digital age, photo manipulation is all too easy. There’s someone in your shot, clone them out, only takes seconds. Forgot to clean your lens or dust on your sensor, leaving spots in the sky. That’s easy, use the Spot Removal Tool. Likewise you can boost colours, a little bit more red, a touch of purple, get that orange a little darker. All can serve to enhance a photographic or if you overdo it make it look terrible.

But what about composition? Once you hit that shutter button, that’s it. The moment is fixed in time. The clouds are where they are, as is the lighthouse. All that is left is the crop tool to allow better framing of the subject, which some will argue, you should be doing before pressing the shutter. Talking of composition. What do you think of the way I have framed the lighthouse against the sky? I’d love to hear from you, so feel free to leave a comment.

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