Sunday, November 28, 2010

Fenland fog

click photo to enlarge
In a talk I gave last month I was waxing lyrical about the purposes and pleasures of photography. During the course of my delivery I described photographers as one of the few groups of people who, on seeing fog from their bedroom window when waking, exclaim, "Hooray!", gobble their breakfast and hurry out into it. With hindsight I recognise that may be an overstatement. In fact, thinking about it more, I'm possibly the only person who does this! And yet, what can be more enticing than atmospheric conditions that change the face of the landscape that you know and photograph regularly, and which presents you with fresh views at every turn? I know that photographers definitely relish the falls of snow that bring about a similar kind of transformation, so I perhaps can't be the only one to welcome the arrival of a good, thick fog.

As I write this we've just had the first snow of the winter. But, as is sometimes the way, a walk in it with the camera produced nothing that I considered good enough to post here. So, back to the fog. Today's image is of a Fenland cottage out in the fields by the side of an unfenced lane, muddy from the passage of vehicles that have been harvesting the beet and brussels. Had I taken the photograph on a clear day the horizon would have featured telegraph poles, pylons, a few houses and trees. The fog transformed the scene by obliterating this clutter and left me to focus on the small building and its surrounding plot and trees. In fact it turned the image into one that could have been taken at any time between, say, 1850 and the present day. With that in mind, and to add to the soft qualities that the fog gave to the scene, I thought I'd convert the photograph to black and white.

For another shot of this cottage in last December's snow, see here.

photograph and text (c) T. Boughen

Camera: Canon
Mode: Aperture Priority
Focal Length: 32mm
F No: f6.3
Shutter Speed: 1/30
ISO: 320
Exposure Compensation: 0 EV
Image Stabilisation: On