Earls Barton, January 31st 2019
This was taken on one of those special mornings where the conditions are breath-taking and every picture you take is a beauty. I’d packed the camera away and was heading to work when I happened to pass this spot so I decided to pull in and see if there was a good photo opportunity. I was blown away by how calm the water was and the reflection was so clear so I set the camera up and managed to capture a few shots before a gentle breeze came in and stirred the water. Probably the best reflection shot I’ve ever captured, and it was a great way to end January.
Piddington – February 1st 2019
This is an image that when I look at it, I’m taken back to that very moment. I can remember so clearly standing there watching the snow falling, listening to the biting wind blowing through the bare trees and the nearby commotion of fieldfare activity (if you look to the top of the tree tunnel you can see a fieldfare in flight). There is something about falling snow that captures your attention and really helps you connect with your surroundings; it brings about a wonderful sense of peace. Our snowy weather was limited to only a couple of mornings this winter so I’m really pleased that I was able to capture this one.
East Haddon – February 24th 2019
I captured this shot from one of my favourite locations on the outskirts of East Haddon. The views looking towards Northampton from the vantage point are spectacular and on this morning there was thick low lying mist covering the vast countryside before me. It felt like I was above the clouds and as the sun began to rise the mist began to fade and reveal parts of the landscape. In the far distance I could see a small hill with 3 trees sat on top of it with mist surrounding it. As I quickly attached my 70-200mm lens to the camera so I could zoom right into the hill, I was blown away by the ethereal atmosphere of the shot. It was almost like the hill was on top of the world above the clouds. It’s a great feeling when you take a picture that puts a huge smile on your face; this one was certainly one of those shots.
Ravensthorpe – April 2nd 2019
An angry sky shot here captured in early spring here. I was driving home from work and saw some stormy looking clouds on the horizon. My initial plan was to include Ravensthorpe reservoir in the shot but the clouds were passing by to the west of the reservoir so I relocated to a nearby field, set the camera up and waited for the conditions to reach their peak. I couldn’t believe how dark these clouds were and they seemed to grow angrier the closer they got to me; I was waiting for some thundery activity but to my surprise it never arrived. As the clouds moved ever closer the wind started to pick up. I was getting ready to run back to the car before the rain arrived when eerily, the wind stopped and all went calm; it was the strangest feeling. It was at this moment that I saw my first swallows of the year as two flew over my head in the direction of the storm cloud. It was a special moment. Minutes later the wind picked up again and the first spots of rain started falling. The rain turned to hail as I was driving home and the landscape turned white, it was almost as if winter was signing off in style.
East Haddon – May 5th 2019
This was a classic spring weather day - sunshine, rain, sunshine, rain. I was stood on a footpath in the middle of a rape field watching the storm clouds creep over the crest of the hill and the conditions were great for long exposure photography. The 102 second exposure time really helped enhance the sense of movement in the clouds and highlighted the energy of spring. A couple of minutes later the heavens opened so I had to run to a nearby tree for shelter. Standing under the tree listening to the rain was very tranquil and being spring, a few minutes later the sun was out again.
Whiston – May 21st 2019
A very simple composition but I absolutely love this image. This was a beautiful warm spring evening, perfect for heading out for a spot of photography. I was strolling down a footpath and was greeted by the sight of a flight of swallows darting up and down a hedgerow. It's such a magical time of year when spring gets underway and our summer visiting birds return and in recent years, I have become fascinated with their activity. I spent a good two hours watching and capturing the beautiful display on camera. A very hard subject to get a good shot of as they move so fast but I was really pleased with this image. I also love the splashes of yellow from the fading rapeseed crop. A wonderful moment in my year.
Guilsborough – 21st June 2019
This shot of the summer solstice sunrise was one of my favourite photography moments of 2019. Up to this point, June had been a bit of a washout and not particularly warm but on this morning all was forgiven and we were treated to a beautiful start to British summertime. I used to struggle to prize myself out of bed for summer sunrise photography but in recent years, heading out at 4am when it seems like the whole world is still asleep is a wonderfully calming experience. I remember this morning so vividly, observing the start of a new day before the chaos of human activity crept into the occasion, listening to the dawn chorus and looking at the warm colours in the sky as the sun pulled itself over the horizon. A very fitting shot to signify the start of summer.
Wollaston – 26th July 2019
Often with photography I find that I’m so focused on what I’m doing with the camera when out taking pictures that I go into autopilot mode and although I see so many wonderful things when out in nature, a lot of my photography sessions pass by in a blur. That being said, I’ll occasionally capture an image and find I am completely absorbed by my surroundings; whenever I view the photographs I am transformed back to the time when the shot was taken. This is one of those images. Whenever I look at it “I’m there”; I can remember the breeze, the humid air, the rumble of thunder in the distance. I took this shot the day after the intensely hot day on July 25th when the temperatures hit the high 30s and like most of our hot spells, the heatwave ended abruptly with some thundery activity. As many of you know, capturing stormy skies on camera is my favourite thing so this shot is one of my favourites of 2019 not necessarily because of its technical merit but because I remember every little detail like it is imprinted on my heart. Am I in Northamptonshire or on a vast plain in tornado alley? Who knows…
Chadstone – September 1st 2019
This was a beautiful evening at one of my favourite photography spots. It was that time of year when the evenings start to turn a bit chilly and the first signs of autumn are in the air. This was a spontaneous photography session so you can imagine my joy when I turned up to find the moon perfectly placed above the tree. After capturing my shots, I packed the camera away and went for a little stroll along a nearby footpath just admiring the gorgeous colours in the sky, reminiscing about the lovely memories from the summer… it was a "great to be alive" evening.
Denton – October 23rd 2019
This was one of those spectacular misty autumn mornings that just kept on giving. When I first arrived at my chosen location the covering of mist and fog was too dense for still photography so I switched to plan B and sent the drone up to see if it would fare better. I was blown away by how beautiful the landscape looked from the drone’s perspective. The mist looked so ethereal as it stretched on for miles around. I love how the road leads the viewer into the scene and how the morning sun just catches the autumn colours in the trees. As the mist slowly started to burn up, I was also able to capture some great shots on my regular camera, but it was this drone shot that pleased me most. A gorgeous morning.
I hope you enjoyed my favourite moments from 2019.
Thanks for reading :)
Northamptonshire based nature photographer