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tree in snow

There is a tree near Castlebar in Mayo that I've had marked out for snowy conditions for a quite a while now. It's on a slope, it's an interesting shape and it's on its own. Pretty much perfect. Unfortunately I'm currently unable to get to it as I'm stuck to within 5km of my house thanks to Covid-19 restrictions. But it's funny what you can find nearby when you're forced to. It seems having driven around searching for trees, that the interesting trees aren't on their own and the ones that are on their own are ugly. But I managed to find this one and the snow plastered to the trunk and

Posted on February 14, 2021 by aledowenthomas in Landscape
corrib viaduct in fog

In my last post I said that I'd have to wait for another foggy morning to have another go at photographing the Corrib Viaduct. I didn't have long to wait. I made an impromptu dash to Woodquay after the school run and had about an hour to get what I needed. From the previous visit I knew where to set up my camera and also that I wanted to use a longer focal length. However, when I was able to compare what I'd captured that morning to what I'd previously captured, I could see that the longer focal length had the effect of bringing background elements in closer to the subject, making it

Posted on December 13, 2020 by aledowenthomas in Landscape
corrib viaduct in fog

I'd just gotten myself a new shutter release remote control and was waiting for an opportunity to try it out. Happily I got my chance on a Sunday morning with a few hours of lovely thick fog over Galway. I headed down to Woodquay where the stone supports that used to hold the Corrib Viaduct are situated. They are interesting structures in the middle of the river that used to hold the Galway to Clifden railway line. There are three of these pillars but unfortunately the more photogenic ones (the ones with an arch in the centre) are situated on the opposite and harder to access side of the

Posted on December 02, 2020 by aledowenthomas in Landscape
derryclare lough connemara

Stood on the shore of Derryclare Lough it was immediately obvious that none of the conditions I was in need of were going to happen. I gave it time but wasn't long in concluding that I wasn't going to get the shot that I was after. I decided to take a look around and when I rounded a huge mound I happened upon a kissing gate on a partly submerged path. I knew that the path was there as I'd seen photographs of it previously but in its current state it would make for an excellent long exposure image. I praised my good fortune and quickly set up my camera. I took a few shots using the 50mm

Posted on November 10, 2020 by aledowenthomas in Landscape
errisbeg dogs bay view connemara

I could just make out the outline of Errisbeg in the darkness as I approached Roundstone, and when I parked I started to doubt my own plans. My intention was to climb Errisbeg in the twilight in the hope that I may get high enough to get a shot of Dog's Bay and Gurteen Bay as the dawn broke. But it was only just getting light and the mountain looks far more formidable  when you're looking up at it than it does on the map. Having recently borrowed a digital luggage scale I knew that my fully laden camera bag weighs nearly 11.5kg so I left the tripod and one camera body in the car to

Posted on October 21, 2020 by aledowenthomas in Landscape
inverin connemara

After the usual false starts and frustrations around this time of year I finally got up early one morning and headed out with my new camera. I wasn't going far, just 20 minutes west to Spiddal. I had planned to get a long exposure of the pier under an overcast sky, but when I arrived at the location during the blue hour, before I'd even parked the car I could see that I wasn't going to be able to get the shot that I was after as I'd neglected to notice that street lights run the length of the pier. The lights would create several blown-out orbs in the image. The desire to try out my new

Posted on October 08, 2020 by aledowenthomas in Landscape
maam cross connemara

After a summer of late night carousing I find I have to gently ease myself back into my landscape photography regime. I try to pick from my accumulated list of locations somewhere that won't require me getting up too early or driving too far. I'd had two false starts already - one where I didn't have money for diesel and one where I had to be in work on the day that I had picked out - but I was headed north west from Galway on a whole day of my favourite weather (rain showers). Unfortunately I had only got as far as Maam Cross when my wife phoned to tell me that she was sick and that

Posted on October 13, 2019 by aledowenthomas in Landscape
abandonned country estate in the snow

Landscape photographers love snow. When I heard the first reports of 'The Beast from the East' I was looking forward to the first proper snowfall in years. The initial reports were that the east coast would get the most snow and that Galway would possibly not be affected. Luckily for me (or so I thought at the time), I was going to a gig in Dublin on the Tuesday, with the snow to start that night and the worst of the storm to hit on the Thursday. I figured that I'd get to bed straight after the gig, rise early, get a few shots near where I was staying in Leixlip and from there head to

Posted on March 04, 2018 by aledowenthomas in Landscape
windswept hawthorn galway

When I frame one of my images - many months after taking it - and stand back to admire my work, I think about what I went through to get the shot. How I got out of a warm bed far too early, drove for 2 hours in the dark on increasingly treacherous roads, then stood in some exposed spot behind my camera; and how I got a rush of excitement as all the elements combined in the way I'd been waiting for and I hurried to capture the scene, before eventually walking back to my car satisfied that I'd gotten what I'd come for. What I don't ever think about is all the times that I did all the early

Posted on November 26, 2016 by aledowenthomas in Landscape
st macdara island

Saint Macdara lived on an island off the South West coast of Connemara in the 6th century, where stood a wooden church. At some point the wooden structure was replaced by a stone church which remains one of the best preserved examples of early Christian buildings. The island  is only about a kilometer long and apart from a flock of sheep it's deserted. Every 16th of July (weather permitting) boatloads of people head out to the island to hear Mass outside the church. As it happens I have a friend who lives nearby so I asked him to organise a boat to take us out there. We made our way to

Posted on March 23, 2016 by aledowenthomas in Landscape