Monday, October 16, 2006

The Derwent Water ferry

click photo to enlarge
For some people there is no better prospect than the opportunity to live where the air is warm and the skies are blue virtually all year round. For such folk places like the South of France, Mediterranean Spain, California or Florida are the locations of choice. And yet there are others who positively revel in a climate with distinct seasons. I am one of those people.

In Britain the different times of year bring different pleasures. The warmth and lushness of summer seems all the better for the preamble that is spring, and that season itself is one that lifts the spirit as new life bursts forth in the lengthening days. The attractions of winter are the sharp frosts, keen bright days, and yes, the snow. And autumn's allure rests in the changes that the landscape undergoes as flowers die, leaves fall, and trees reveal their branches. As a photographer I find July and August, with the high sun and clear blue skies, the least appealing time of the year! For me spring and autumn offer the most. This photograph of the Derwent Water ferry in England's Lake District typifies what I mean. The sun on this October morning is causing the cloud to break and lift, revealing the Lakeland fells in all their beauty. The ferry, one of two that circumnavigate the lake, carrying hill walkers and tourists, is an interesting foreground subject that is secondary to that magnificent autumn sky. There are those who moan about the rain that falls on our islands. And yes, it can get in the way. But a great sky like this is one of the benefits of that regular precipitation.

I used a zoom lens at 80mm (35mm equivalent), and dialled in -0.7 EV to ensure that I didn't lose the subleties of the sky through overexposure. An aperture of f6.3 gave me a speed of 1/800 sec at 100 ISO, so I didn't need to track the ferry to keep it reasonably sharp. Post processing brought the colours and contrast back to where they were on the day.
photograph & text (c) T. Boughen