The Journey Home


That’s it! Times up! Time to go home. The last two weeks has flown by and all that’s left to do is pack and head back to the north of England.

The light and weather have been great with Skye especially having some wonderful weather. What initially looked like being a wet and dull week in the highlands, turned out to be rather wide of the mark forecast wise. The rainy episodes did have some positive outcomes – my interest in Chess had returned after a few years away. I even bought a Skye chess set and board.

There were plenty of favourite moments during the stay on Skye and in the highlands but the visit to Flora MacDonald’s grave remains a poignant one, almost an act of pilgrimage for those fascinated by Scottish history as I am. The sun coming up over the mountainous coast of Scotland during the first few days on Skye was also wondrous. Magical even.

So the bags are packed and the cameras packed away. I don’t know when I’ll be back (most likely not next year) but I’ll certainly look forward to seeing the misty mountains and dark lochs of Skye and the highlands again some day.

The image above is of the Black Cuillins mountains on Skye, an impressive and rather dark presence when visiting the isle of Skye.

Glencaple Trawler Bow II


So here is the final image of the Glencaple Trawler. I thought i’d add a third photograph to make a nice trio 🙂 This final shot looks up the River Nith towards Dumfries.

All of the photos were taken on the morning i was heading for home. After a rainy day or two the clouds finally parted, blue sky was revealed and the sun made a welcome appearance – just as i was heading back home. Typical eh. So I took my shots in the rather warm light of the mid morning, got back in the car and headed for home.

As for the trawler seen in the photographs, i’m not exactly sure if it was in the early stages of restoration, used as somewhere to stay or just waiting for the scrap man to arrive. From certain things i saw it could be the second of those options.

There is something compelling though about boats and ships that are at the end of their working lives. Something rather sad. We attach a lot of emotion to boats and ships, maybe more than we do any other method of transport.

A new Scotland gallery has been started on the main website and features a rather good panoramic photograph of the River Nith. The gallery, which is a work in progress with new images to be added regularly, can be found at:-

The Return


Thursday turned out to be a bit of a washout. High winds and a driving rain made just going out a challenge let alone taking any photographs. Fortunately today was much better so it was in the direction of Skye that I headed, traveling up to Uig located in the north west corner of the isle.

Skye has been a beautiful place to visit, so much so that I intend staying there for seven days next year. Wherever you seem to look, Skye offers a new experience or view. Sadly I’ll be leaving the Highlands tomorrow to go down to the Dumfries area of Scotland. With hindsight I should have thought about staying longer in this area when booking the cottages but you should always leave a place with a feeling of wanting more. Anyway a stay around the Highlands and Skye is definitely planned for 2013. The first thing to do when I get back home is start planning next year’s visit.


One other benefit of staying on Skye would be the opening up of new areas to explore like the Isle of Harris etc. Day trips could be planned using the ferry services. It’s something to work out for next year but seeing the ferry loading and setting off today, I was REALLY tempted to go aboard and sail away. I quite fancy taking a sea journey.


Traveling about, a photographer needs to be able to move quietly and quickly, without drawing attention to their presence. I thought maybe using this camper van covered in a tartan camouflage might be a good way of doing that 🙂

Ninety Degrees

The rain came in fast, moving across the expanse of water between Skye and Kyle of Lochalsh. Not that the weather bothered me as I took photos. There is nothing like a bit of rough weather to blow the cobwebs away especially if it’s rough coastal weather.

I did wonder if I was the only one to think it was slightly blowy so I was relieved to hear the lady in the nearby Lifeboat shop remark about how windy it was. It was heavy weather for everyone including the locals it seems.

Weather is, of course, an important component in photography and yet we often have the tendency to put away our cameras once the clouds darken and the rain appears. Keeping the camera out of the bag can often deliver rewarding results though a drying cloth is definitely something to keep with you.

The sheer speed of weather conditions means you have to be quick, though often you do see it coming and can add it to any landscape photo as long as you are quick.

So why is the post called ninety degrees? Well that’s the angle that the rain is falling at the moment 🙂

Favourite Photo?

There is a website, for a British newspaper, that runs a regular article where a photographer picks his or her favourite photograph. While the choices made by the photographer in question can be revealing, I often think that the idea of picking ONE photo to sum up your work/talent is just asking for trouble.

The photograph above is just one of my favourite shots. I’m certainly not going to limit myself to picking just one unless I have some rabid photo fanatic, holding me hostage with a gun to my head. Then I’d have to pick one! If so the photo above would make the list.

The photograph was taken in 2003 at Beaumaris on Anglesey, North Wales. It was the classic story of walking along and behold, there was the image. The couple were taking in the view, looking over the water to the Snowdonia national park with the mountains just visible through the mist. Really the picture sums up, at least for me, what most people seek out of life – a companion to be with and to admire/share the view/experience with them. It also reminds me of the W.H Davis poem about having time to stand and stare.

I was worried that they’d move position or decide to walk further along the sea front, but they remained like that for some time, completely unaware that i’d taken their photo. Two frames of HP5 taken on a Nikon F4s fitted with an 80-200mm zoom.

The only other consideration is the telescope to the right of the couple. Is the fact that it is in an upright position relevant at all??? 🙂