No workshops for a while but then two come along in quick succession! The Bath one was planned but this Jurassic coast one on 10th December was a bonus. The workshop was with  Anthony Blake photography once again, he had someone cancel and asked me if I was interested, I was pleased to go. We set off early in the morning to get down to Corfe Castle before dawn although the advantage of wintertime is that the dawn is very much later so we didn’t leave Child Okeford until 6am.

We had to climb up West Hill, Corfe Castle to get ready for the sunrise, where Tony took us it was fairly steep and slippy but we  all made it safely and managed to get ready for sunrise. We all used graduated filters for the sky as the differential in sky and land was going to be tricky for the camera to interpret. We managed to get some images of the sunrise and then walked down to the base of the hill to take some silhouette images with the sun behind the castle. As always on these workshops planning ahead can mean the weather is not in your favour but we didn’t do too badly as the days in between had been grey and miserable and although there are pictures to be had in those conditions it’s not what we really want along the Jurassic coast.

As always click on an image for a bigger picture!

Once the sun was up we headed off to Swanage for the next part of the workshop, always an interesting place with the old pier and the Victorian pier. Before we started taking photos we had a very welcome stop in a cafe on the seafront and had a breakfast to warm ourselves up then on to the business of image making. It was clear day and the Needles, Isle of White were visible behind the old pier.

Old Swanage Pier
Old Swanage Pier – ISO 100 88mm f22 30sec 0.9 ND Filter

Our first stop was the old pier an iconic picture that has been taken many times but worth practicing on using filters to smooth out the water. During the summer there are temporary landing platforms in the way as the divers use the main pier to leave in their boats, so in the winter it’s easier to take an image without all the clutter. It gave me a chance to try out my 10 stop filter, this makes the exposure much longer and this is what smooths out the water.

Then we spent some time on the Victorian pier taking a number of images, I turned some of them into monochrome to bring out the textures and clouds.

Swanage Pier
Swanage Pier

As we were on the pier we noticed across the bay to Pevril Point that the wave action in the wind looked interesting so that was our next stop. At first we were a little disappointed as there were a group learning coasteering but a after a while it was good to have a little human interest in the image with the waves coming over the top of them, I was glad I was on dry land!

Pevril point
Pevril point

By the time we had finished at Pevril Point it was time for some lunch which we enjoyed in the fresh air overlooking the bay, a little chilly but OK. Before we left Swanage we walked a long the seafront taking a few images.

Banjo Pier, Swanage
Banjo Pier, Swanage

Our final stop was to be Kimmeridge for the sunset it wasn’t looking too good as there was cloud moving in but I’m pleased to say the light changed as we were lined up on the ledges. The tide was out exposing the ledges but they were very slippery so we had to move around with caution, we or our camera wouldn’t bounce if we went down on the rocks.

Probably my favourite pictures of the day I used my 0.9 Neutral Density filter with a 0.9 soft Graduated filter to slow down the exposure and the graduated filter to balance the exposure of the land and sky

Kimmeridge sunset
Kimmeridge sunset

I said Kimmeridge was our final stop but when we made our way back to the Corfe Castle Car Park the light was giving way to dusk and the floodlights were on lighting up the castle so we all couldn’t resist one last stop to take a picture or two.

Corfe Castle at dusk
Corfe Castle at dusk
Corfe Castle and village at dusk
Corfe Castle and village at dusk

Another great day and although the weather and lighting were not always as we hope for there was still images to get out of the day. A long but fruitful day!

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