BIRDS, BUTTERFLIES AND GETTING BACK ON THE HORSE

Okay, so it’s not your everyday blog title.  As the lockdown restrictions begin to ease my thoughts turn to the landscape, but I have my reservations.   There was a time in my photography that I would be out for every sunrise or sunset opportunity hoping for that epic sky.  Now I find myself staying local for the wildlife.  It is almost as though the lockdown restrictions have trained me to stay local.  However I think there is more to it than that…

I’m fortunate through my Carn Marth project that I can stay local and still enjoy photography.  And despite visiting this spot for the last couple of years I’m still finding now that it keeps giving.  And so I keep wanting to go back.  It has got me thinking more about whether I actually need to get into a car to enjoy photography?  Especially as someone who loves the natural world I do regularly consider my impact on the environment.  How responsible is it to get into a car just to go and take some photographs that might end up as a square on Instagram, quickly scrolled though on a mobile phone?  It’s perhaps not something I would have even considered a few years ago.

During these unusual circumstances I have been finding new paths locally and have several shots I want to return to in the right conditions.  My new Carn Marth route takes me through a local cemetery which has been left to go wild.  This is where the butterflies come in.  I have taken a couple of images here that are right up there with my favourites.  Again, all local, no need to get into a car.  A world of opportunities on my doorstep.  Lockdown has enabled me to maybe see things I had previously taken for granted.  

Meadow Brown butterfly taken in the local cemetery

Perhaps there is an element of fear crippling my landscape photography?  It’s not fear of coronavirus, more a case of fear of capturing a good landscape.  Through the weekly Twitter competitions I see amazing landscape photography which only questions my own image making.  Wildlife photography is much about the moment, with some of the elements out of your control.  Besides the weather in the landscape it is more in your control, from settings to composition.  It is more a case of slowing down and considering your photography.  Whilst slowing down is a good thing, it can lead to disappointment upon reviewing the images and questioning ‘why didn’t I… do x, y or z?’  

This is by no means a complaint, I’m still enjoying my photography as much as ever, and I’m sure I will be out capturing the landscape soon.  At the moment with work, schools not being fully open and childcare I will just continue to be grateful for the opportunities on my doorstep…