Yachts, Shoreham Beach

Yachts, Shoreham Beach September 2020

After 6 months of staying at home, I have started exploring further afield. In this case, about 20 miles away – so not that far! I used to live in Shoreham-by-Sea 40 years ago and whenever I go back I am reminded of what it was like as a child. The church at the end of my road, remains pretty much as I remember it, but the whole place looks neater than I remember it, perhaps everywhere was a bit scruffier in the 1970s.

The weather in the morning has turned much cooler in the morning, so I can definitely tell that Autumn is coming. But for now the outdoor cafes are open, people are still going for morning swims in the sea, and as you can see, people are sailing!

Shoreham Beach, West Sussex

Early Morning, Shoreham Beach September 2020

In a change to my usual routine, this morning I drove to the beach, which is about half an hour from where I live. It was still quite cool, but the Sun was very bright, making it hard to take photos. As you can see, some people were in the water although it looked quite cold.

Shoreham’s beaches are quite steep pebble beaches, which give a distinctive sound as waves break quite close to the shore. It also makes it quite easy for waves to catch you unexpectedly if you are paddling in the shallows.

Lightning, Batu Ferringhi

Lightning, Batu Ferringhi 2014

I used to live here, with a view of the sea. In good weather, the sea had a green/blue tinge to it. When there was a storm, it was dark green. I lived near the top of a high block of flats with a front row view whenever a storm came in.

In Malaysia, they have big tropical storms, with finger sized drops of rain and thunder which you can feel, even from a long way off. As I remember it, I was woken up by the lightning first, which lit up my bedroom. Then, I think my wife and I went into the livingroom to watch the light show.

I think I put the camera on a tripod and kept taking long exposures until the lightning flashed. I tweaked the photo to be a little darker, because the brightness looked too unreal.

Morning Sun, West Sussex

Morning Sun, West Sussex August 2020

How has your life changed in the last few months?

One of the things I like about life now, are my early morning walks on the parkland near where I live. When I was working, my morning was dominated by my need to get to work – which was always some way away from where I lived. And I’m sure lots of people who lived miles away would have rushing to get to work near where I lived.

Anyway, a pleasure of the last 6 months has been the change from spring into summer. It has got light earlier and earlier and, obviously, warmer too.

A challenge of this photo is the change from the original to this form – for some reason, the shadows looked “richer” if that makes sense. I still like the effect of the light on the grass and the gravel.

Inka, Somerset

Inka, nr. Bath, Somerset August 2020

They say, “Don’t work with animals or children”. But as you can see, some animals make good subjects. I like that he has given me good eye contact – I think I did something to get his attention (shameless preformer that I am). People make all sorts of claims for their portraits, but I think I have shown what Inka is like at least some of the time. I think I will use this as an illustration for a lens review I am working on for my YouTube channel: It is sharp and can help achieve a narrow depth of focus by his face.

Feather, West Sussex

Feather, West Sussex August 2020

After what has felt like age, it has finally rained. In the UK we have had several weeks of hot weather, so this has felt very welcome.

I found this feather on some park land I like to walk on every morning – I’m trying to decide what sort of bird it came from – probably a seagull. It is amazing to see how oils on the feather repel the water, so that it forms little spheres (which act like mini-magnifiers). One of the beauties of the natural world, is how the closer you look, the more you can see.

Lavender, West Sussex

Lavender Seedling, West Sussex August 2020

Writing this, in early August 2020, I hope things are well with you.

How are you spending lockdown?

For my part, I’m so be getting into different routines – here I was just about to water some lavender seedlings – when I thought I would take a quick photo. For some reason, i thought that lavender would be easy to grow, but I’m finding them to be very slow! Lots of learning when you try something new!

Like most of my photos these days, I’m using my phone, I find if I turn it upsidedown, I can get quite close and gives a pleasing almost worm’s eye view of things.

Bullocks in the Morning, West Sussex

Bullocks in the morning, West Sussex July 2020

This field, is next to the parkland where I walk every morning. As you can see, it is used as pasture land. It is tempting to think of landscapes as unchanging, but there is quite a rapid turnover in livestock and I am sure that if I see them again next week, there will be different animals there.

I don’t know how it is where you live, but here, since the start of lockdown, it feels like most days merge into each other fairly seamlessly. Or atleast that is how they feel.

Tree in the Morning, West Sussex

Tree in the Morning, West Sussex June 2020

Another morning walk picture. How has being in lockdown affected you? What do you do differently to before?

I was going to write that I get up earlier, but that’s not true. I used to get up at 5am before, but then it was because I had to get ready for work, where as now, I get up early to avoid people during my walk. I can’t believe how much I do to try to avoid other people.When this pandemic has passed, I wonder how quickly we will settle into being around eachother again?

Frost, West Sussex

Frost, West Sussex January 2020

A preCovid-19 picture, from January this year. This is a picture of the roof of my car. I think I was walking to the station, when I saw these frost patterns on the roof – so I took a picture. The patterns in the ice make me think of feathers, why they have formed like this, I have no clue.