31 July 2010

Book Launch with Gervase Phinn - Yorkshire Journey

I recently attended a book launch of the new title: Gervase Phinn's Yorkshire Journey - published by Country Publications at Broughton Hall. I'm pleased to have a few images in the book - including shots of Grassington and Ilkley Moor. It was good to catch up again with the editors and see some new faces too. It was also good to finally meet other photographers who contribute to Dalesman and Countryman - some names I knew... but no idea what they looked like!

Gervase is certainly a character and I'm sure the book will be an excellent read (I did hang around to get my free copy signed!). A successful author and public speaker, Gervase has written numerous books and writes a regular column for the Countryman magazine.

Country Publications seems to go from strength to strength, will a very loyal readership. It's clear too that the editors and designers really care about their product, and this recent publication is a superb example of the quality they produce - beautifully set out with stunning images throughout.

Photographing Damselflies

Yesterday morning saw me by a sheltered pond in West Yorkshire, literally teeming with insect life. It's a recently discovered location - and one that is brimming with butterflies, moths and damselflies. The conditions started off well: a lovely still morning with intermittent sunshine breaking through the low cloud. Damselflies were just everywhere, buzzing around the spiky grasses and resting on the low growing plants that fringe the pond. I've always found it difficult to get close enough to the damselflies - they seem particularly skittish.. But perhaps they were just beginning to warm up and not quite at their full speed. Either way, I was able to get extremely close to a number of them as they rested on various perches. I shot towards the light wherever I could, hand-holding the camera and shooting at about 1/250 at f7.1 on ISO 200. As the breeze picked up, photographing insects became increasingly difficult until virtually impossible... this is one of the virtues of an early start as it's the best time to achieve the the stillness that is so important for insect photography.