..We went up to the top of the highest hill and stopped Still It was just so beautiful.. This is where the shadows come to play twixt the day And night Dancing and skipping Along a chink of light..
– Kate Bush ‘Somewhere In Between’
An uninspiring visit to one part of the west coast put me in the mood for a return to Portencross, further up the coast. It was getting late and the sun was soon to impale itself on the peaks of Arran before dying for another day; and as it did so, it threw the last light across the water, transforming and becoming like molten gold, caressing the large rocks of the shoreline and setting them ablaze.
Ruby Bay is a fascinating place. It is so named because it is quite common for visitors to find ‘Elie Rubies’ (garnets) on the beach – unfortunately, I haven’t managed this so far but I live in hope. The views around the Firth of Forth are magnificent and these includes the Isle of May, the Bass Rock and a variety of wildlife; at my last visit, I suddenly found myself standing fifteen feet away from a six foot long grey seal, basking quietly in the sunshine. The only buildings are the stone Lady Tower topping the cliff, and the small lighthouse over to the west side.
On this occasion, I wanted to photograph the rocks along the shoreline, which – like that seal – were basking in the afternoon sun and looking wonderful.
This is the final of three images taken today at Portencross on the Ayrshire coast. Perhaps not surprisingly, I decided to convert this image to monochrome and I like the final result. Like the other two shots, this was an exposure of two minutes using a 10-stop ND filter, with a graduated ND filter to balance out the sky.
I drove to one of my favourite locations this afternoon. Portencross is a tiny little hamlet on the Ayrshire coast, just along from Seamill. There isn’t really much there apart from a fantastic shoreline, a derelict pier and a recently renovated castle, originally built in the 1300s. Be that as it may, I seem to go back there time after time.
Today, I really wanted some long exposure shots more than anything. Usually I would photograph the pier and Northbank Cottage, once the scene of a very nasty murder. Today, it was the rocks, the crashing waves and the amazingly stormy sky.
As I stood looking out across the sea, there was a huge storm brewing above the Isle of Arran. In between rain storms, I managed to make a few images. This was my favourite amongst them. The exposure was around two minutes, which gave some lovely movement to the sky and to the water – although it may seem it was calm, it was anything but – the waves were ferocious; however, the long exposure has smoothed out the water and belies the reality of the scene.