Posts tagged ‘East Head’

In awe of the light and dark clouds at East Head

Never before have I witnessed such a dramatic scene – fortunately I was in the right place at the right time.

At the end of last month I visited East Head at West Wittering, a place I have photographed and written about many times before on this site. But this time the conditions were very different and they couldn’t have been more atmospheric, moody or in one word spectacular. It was early evening as the drama unfolded before my eyes.

As I walked on the sand I noticed a line of fence posts which roped off a section of the dunes. After all East Head is owned by the National Trust and they are keen to protect this important habitat for wildlife and in particular nesting birds. This was a minimalist image (above) but as I turned round to look in the opposite direction I saw dark clouds gathering fast.

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All by myself

All by myself

Despite the title, this isn’t a long distance selfie! I am though drawn to lone figures in relatively empty spaces walking along with only their thoughts for company. Perhaps it’s because I can readily empathise with the concept of being on alone in a quiet space. After all there is so much ‘noise’ in this world that it has become something of a luxury and a joy to find somewhere with solitude and even a little silence.

Alone yes, but even here there is the sound of gentle waves lapping against shore and feet squelching as each step lands on the soft wet sand. I just hope this person had the good sense to switch off their mobile phone, or better still left it at home to avoid the temptation to check for messages, emails, likes or comments!

There is of course one other person present, and that’s me the photographer. Photography tends to be a solitary pursuit and I am very happy this should be the case.

As you are looking at this image there is now a third person, you the viewer. For as Ansel Adams once said – ‘There are always two people in every picture: the photographer and the viewer’ – and how right he was.

Depending on the device you are using to view this picture, you might like to click on the image to see a larger version, as the main point of interest is very small but hugely relevant!

 

The Dunes – requests for a mono conversion

The Dunes mono (1 of 1)

A few weeks ago I posted this image of The Dunes at East Head in colour. You can view it here. I had a number of comments, for which I am always grateful. They all had one thing in common – they expressed a desire to see a black and white version. Well here it is and I am pleased with the result, so thanks everyone for the suggestion.

I guess my only disappointment is that it was taken using an iPhone – nothing wrong with camera phones these days but when I came to processing the photograph, I just wish I had been able to work on an 18MB RAW file from my Leica Monochrom. The flexibility, dynamic range and the depth of detail from a full frame file would have been a joy to have at my disposal.

When the forecast is right I shall return with the Leica but I always remember that any photograph is capturing a moment in time which will never be repeated – and that’s why this hobby has such an enduring interest, as no two photographs can ever be the same.

The Dunes – East Head, West Sussex

East Head-1

I have said it before, and I’ll say it again, but East Head on the West Sussex coast must be one of my favourite places. I am so fortunate to live nearby and I try not to take it for granted, which would be a very easy thing to do.

Strangely I rarely visit this location specifically to take photographs, as it is really dog walking territory. As a result most of my images taken here are opportunistic, and are often captured on my iPhone. This shot is just such an example. The clouds were wonderful and the sun lit the dunes in the foreground. The sands were rippled from the wind and luckily were pure; not a paw print in sight! The grasses too were bending in the wind and a lone figure below the patch of blue sky completes the scene. How lucky I am to have such a beautiful place on my doorstep.