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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

I'd been closely monitoring the conditions in Sligo and I headed there on a day when I figured that I had the best chance of a bit of snow on the mountains. I planned to be at Strandhill beach for dawn to catch high tide. As I drove in I could see that the waves were wild and that there was snow on the Ox Mountains. I had planned to use my 50mm lens and to incorporate the broad sweep of the beach but I found that it caused the mountains to be too insignificant, so I swapped for my 85mm lens and forsook most of the beach. I stayed just long enough for the sun to pop up over the horizon a

Posted on March 01, 2020 by aledowenthomas in Landscape

It was one of those clear, bright days that happen after snow has fallen and I was going to attempt driving to the top of Croaghmoyle mountain. There's an RTÉ mast at the summit so there's a road that leads to that. How far up the mountain I'd be able to get I had no idea until I tried. When I got to Castlebar the sky turned grey and no sooner had I got onto the first L road than it started to snow. In no time at all the snow was coming down thick and the world had turned white. I was crawling along and any time I did more than tap the brakes the ABS would come on. I thought better of

Posted on February 17, 2018 by aledowenthomas in Landscape

At times I've been asked how I process my images and I've not know what to say. If the person asking isn't a photographer themselves how do you straddle the line between being too simplistic and too esoteric? I'm going to break down the process I go through to attempt to give an idea of what's involved. I've picked the last image that I worked on because it was convenient. By no means do I do the exact same thing with each image but this should give some indication of how I go about things. Just like the actual taking of the photos it has taken many years of failures and successes,

Posted on January 14, 2016 by aledowenthomas in Landscape

Ireland is a country on the very western fringe of the European continent. On moving to Dublin, its capital city, I found that things I was able to obtain easily when living in the UK were either not available or could only be obtained at great expense. When I moved to Galway, despite it being a city I found that certain other things weren't available outside of the capital. I then discovered Connemara, an area that covers the western tip of County Galway, a place which at first seemed impossibly remote and although it's become far more familiar to me and therefore less remote, I still

Posted on March 07, 2015 by aledowenthomas in Landscape

So there I am standing on one side of the Inagh Valley. A huge expanse bordered by mountains. I'm up a lonely farm track with not a soul near me when I hear a cough from behind. Startled, I spin around, but there's no one there. It took me a while to realise that the noise came from a lone cyclist who - from my vantage point - is but a speck on a thin grey line of road several hundred metres distant. A lesson in how far sound can travel. A few weeks later I was walking along the other side of the valley. The only sound my own foot steps. Just as I was thinking how I was in a very remote

Posted on March 30, 2014 by aledowenthomas in Landscape

Every time I think of Roundstone I start signing 'like a Roundstone cowboy'; I can't help it. I wanted to photograph the harbour at sunrise so I stayed at a friend's house in Carna because it's closer to Roundstone, which meant I didn't have to get out of bed as early. It was while driving to Carna the previous evening that I thought to myself that my car really isn't cut out for Connemara. The headlights don't make much of an impression on the inky black skies, even on full beam, and when you have to dip for an oncoming car you practically have to guess where the road went. The

Posted on January 12, 2014 by aledowenthomas in Landscape