Lumb falls in Yorkshire is a little off the beaten track but well worth a visit if you have chance. Basic directions are follow the Keighly road out of Hebden Bridge then take the Haworth old road after about a mile. This is a single track road and you watch for public bridleway sign on your left. There is only room to park 2 cars. A good pair of walking boots are required to walk down the rocky path. You can get to the base of the falls with care if you cross the bridge.
A plaque at the falls shows that the former poet laureate Ted Hughes wrote his poem ‘Six young men’ at the falls. This is a poem about 6 young men in a photograph that went to war and they had all died 6 months later.
It was using my lightweight tripod and the exposure was half a second at f22. The big difficulty with the shot was the extremes in brightness between the shadow areas and the highlights. I did quite a lot of work in lightroom to balance everything out but do hope you think it was worth it.
As a change from my usual posts I am adding people into this post and talking about outdoor portraiture. I have great love of capturing people naturally. I like to fit people into landscapes and scenes. As with all portraiture the aim is capture something about a person. A feeling or a look that says to someone this is me. The great thing about working outdoors is that people tend to be more relaxed, the images should be more informal.
You will need to find your own way to work but the way that I work is to put people into a position I want to photograph them in then get them to move slowly and change position and give me different looks. Talk to people and continue to shoot all the time. You will get a few mistakes shooting like this but you will get many great shots.
Use a longer lens for this type of work and a big aperture, f4 or f2.8 should work for you. However you shoot the most important thing is the person or people that you are photographing.
When I went to one of my favorite places recently, my aim was to use some long exposures photographing a stream running through a gorge. The place that I went is Padley gorge in the Peak district. You can get magical lighting there when the sun shines. As there a lot of trees down in the gorge you get some wonderful dappled light effects.
Because the day I chose to go was heavily overcast and the trees were blocking much of the light, it allowed longer exposures, the exposures were about 5 seconds. The camera was set on 100 ISO at f22. If the light is too bright for long exposures use neutral density filter to cut out some of the light. On exposures of this length you will need to use a tripod, here a light travel tripod was used with a rock in bag hanging from it for added stability.
The effect that you get on the water is where the water is running fast it goes almost milky. On the slower running water the effect is that it looks like a sheet of glass. This type of photography is well worth giving a try and experimenting with.
I just want to tell you what I thought was a slightly ridiculous conversation that I had about this image with dappled sunlight. It was a beautiful day and I was out walking in the hills and stopped by a waterfall. There was a couple in their mid 70’s sat by the waterfall, there was also a class of school children doing geological studies there. The kids were having fun as they do when near water. I fell into conversation with the couple, the conversation got onto how these kids probably only get out into the countryside when on school trips. They probably spend most of their time sat on their PlayStation’s at home.
The couple both had good cameras and liked to photograph when out walking. I mentioned to the couple about a day that I had in the Derbyshire Peak District recently, the light was beautiful and had come across some strange trees, the dappled sunlight was coming through the trees. The light was amazing and the scene just stunning. The gentleman the said to me that he would create that effect in photoshop. I was little taken aback, surely all you are doing is the same as the kids on their PlayStation’s. Part of what we do as artists or photographers is getting out there and seeing and feeling passionate about the images that we produce. Always remember that photoshop is not a substitute for feeling passionate about our wonderful world.
Giving your image a sense of scale is very important. One of the best ways to do this is to add people into the image. We all know roughly the size of a person so it gives you an idea of the vastness of the overall scene. The image that I have on here is to show the landscape but including the rock and photographer in the foreground gives a sense of depth and scale to the image.
I had gone out to do some landscape photography with Monika in the Peak district in Derbyshire, it was one of those days where the light was beautiful and clear. We walked down a gorge which has many trees and the dappled sunlight was perfect. We walked out onto the open moorland where we came across these rocks used by climbers. Slightly more daring than me she went and sat on the outcrop to take some photographs. I took a few shots of her on the rock, I love this image as the clouds are wonderful and the detail in the rock and scene are immense. The conversion to black and white was done in lightroom.