Breaking the Ice, Finland

Tammisaari, Finland 2004

I went to Tammisaari in early winter. As the plane descended to land at Vanta, I heard the stewardess say,”Oh no, it’s snowing- again!”. And she was right.

A nice thing about Finland, is that most things still work in the snow – if you are from the U.K., you know what I am thinking here.

One of the things I like about snow, is how quiet it makes things. With this picture, I was hoping it captured the stillness of the scene. Silence.

But perhaps not quite silence, because on other occasions, I saw brave Finns jumping/gingerly lowering themselves into the water (where the ice has been broken). I know someone will say it is really “refreshing” – but not for me!

View from the Park, Li Jiang

Bridge and Mountain, Li Jiang, China 2015

One of the things I love about China, is its varied landscapes. Here, it makes me think of a giant watercolour painting, with its reflections of the trees and bridge. As I look at it now, I’m wondering, if the point of view had been higher or lower, could I have got a reflection of the mountain?

As I recall it, this part of China is quite high altitude, with fairly hard light, which can make for striking landscapes. It can also give terrible sunburn: I can remember feeling my skin sizzle at the end of the day when I put on the “after sun”. During the day, it was quite warm, but at night it was very cold.

This was taken on a trip I took to Yunnan. This area was renamed Shangri-La, referencing James Hinton’s novel “Lost Horizon”. It certainly has mountains, monasteries and vivid blue skies.

Some technical details. For this (I think) month long trip, I just took my FujiFilm X100. Most of the time it took lovely photos, which were quite easy to edit later. Nice colours too.