In a bit of a mood in Somerset

I’ve just been down to Minehead in Somerset for a few days.  The weather wasn’t too wonderful whilst I was there, being rather wet, windy and cloudy, but it was great for moody photography.

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This is an early morning shot of the famous (infamous?) white roof of the Butlin’s holiday complex.  It’s taken from Minehead Harbour with a telephoto lens.  There were some nice dark clouds above it, which I have darkened a bit more to give the right sort of mood.

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I made a trip to Dunster Beach just up the road from Minehead. It’s close to the medieval village of Dunster.  Near Dunster there is a tower, Conygar Tower, on a small hill. I waited for a little break in the dark cloud so that the tower was silhouetted.  A graduated Neutral Density filter darkened the sky at the top.

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There is a cascade running on to Dunster Beach, and because it wasn’t sunny I was able to use a long shutter speed to show the movement of the water.  The water runs down a a series of concrete steps and once again I used a long focal length lens.  It gave some “perspective compression”, making the steps seem closer to each other than they are in practice.  My EM-10’s IBIS (In-Body Image Stabilisation) allowed me to hand-hold with a long shutter speed, (1/20th of a second), to show the movement of the water, but to avoid camera shake.  The overcast weather meant that the highlights in the water didn’t burn out.

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For this last image I changed to a wide-angle lens, and dropped the camera down low.  The EM-10’s tilting screen helped me get the composition right without me needing to lie on the ground, and the IBIS allowed a hand-held shutter speed of 1/10th of a second.  I was intrigued by the water coming out underneath the top concrete layer.  You can imagine that a few hard winters where ice gets in the cracks will loosen it even more.

The Moral?  If the weather is a bit “mardy”, your images can be moody!

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