I made this image on a trip to Bamburgh Castle, on the Northumberland Coast. The Castle was very impressive, sitting majestically on top of the rocky promontory and surrounded by luscious sand dunes. It was a very warm summer day and I have very vivid memories of it; much later in the day, I stood and watched the most blood red sunset I have ever seen, followed moments later by the rise of the brightest harvest moon. This image reminds me very much of that day and of the emotions and memories associated with it.
In the creation of this image, I had to work a lot on the tones, using several layers in differing blend modes to accentuate the structure of the Castle itself and make it stand out agains the sky. I also wanted to darken the foliage of the dunes but without losing all the detail in them – although harder to see in this smaller version, the tones and detail are retained in the full sized version.
I liked the sky I saw above Motherwell yesterday. Making this image of it, I liked the way the softness of the sky shapes contrasted with the boxiness of the Motherwell buildings, as well as the way the afternoon sunshine illuminated the scene. This shot was converted to monochrome to bring the focus onto the shapes, rather than the vivid colours, of the buildings making up the skyline.
One of the features at Chatelherault is the Parterre Garden, with its miniature box hedges forming their tiny swirls. Inside this part of the building is the ballroom and the Duchess’ Chamber. This view through the garden was perfect for some selective focussing to lead the eye to the building which is the focus – literally and metaphorically – of the photograph.
The classic view of Chatelherault is from the front of the building. However, I liked this view of the Duke’s hunting lodge, taken from the side and up on the small hill. This view gave a nice perspective of the place, as well as making the most of the leading lines around the grounds. The four minute exposure made the most of the wonderful sky yesterday, giving it some nice movement.
At the end of my visit to Airth, I returned to the front facade of the Pineapple, as I wanted to try to capture the lovely little entrance vestibule. It was late afternoon and the sunshine was warm and contrasty, coming in low down from the side, lengthening the shadows and texturising the sandstone. The difference in the light levels between the inner vestibule and outside on the columns, meant that I needed to make several exposures to ensure a full range of tones and detail. These exposures were combined later before the image was converted to monochrome.