alan frost photography

fine art photography in monochrome

Churches Project no 7. – St Mary, Stoughton, West Sussex

The Church of St Mary in Stoughton is described in the book ‘Betjeman’s Best British Churches’ as an outstanding example of a well-loved country church, and who am I to disagree. Standing above the pretty village, the late C11 church is approached up a wide but inclined footpath; a challenge I’m sure for a few elderly worshipers walking up the slope to get to the Sunday Eucharist service.

Whenever I find myself in a church I am simply looking to photograph the features which draw my attention. Sometimes it can simply be the play of light, as shown below in the image called ‘Hymns’. The rays of sun only lasted a few seconds so I was fortunate to capture this particular shot. Alternatively I might concentrate on certain details, like the ‘Organ pipes’ or ‘Bell ropes’. I will also use a wide aperture to give me a limited depth of field to isolate an feature but still provide context. The ‘Nave lamp’ is a good example of this technique.

Churches have many things in common, but they are all different. Each and every one has its own character and its this character or personality that I am trying to capture when the camera comes out of the bag and the shutter starts to open and close. I can happily spend an hour or two in an empty church just looking around, soaking up the atmosphere and waiting for the light to add another dimension these wonderful historic places of worship.

 

Hymns

Hymns

 

Organ pipes

Organ pipes

 

Nave lamp

Nave lamp

 

Chancel step

Chancel step

 

Bell ropes

Bell ropes

 

Contributions welcome

Contributions welcome

 

Chancel

Chancel

 

Chancel door

Chancel door

 

St Mary, Stoughton

St Mary, Stoughton

 

Do click on any of the images to view a larger version or visit the West Sussex Gallery page for other churches in the same county.

For more information about my ongoing Churches Project do click here.

For a more historical description of St Mary, Stoughton do click here.

4 Responses to “Churches Project no 7. – St Mary, Stoughton, West Sussex”

    • alan frost

      Thanks Su, I am pleased my work has inspired you to continue with your own project. There are so many wonderful churches to explore and to photograph – I feel I have only scratched the surface.

      Like

      Reply

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