Caroline Shipsey

Sunday, 28 August 2011

Dunraven Bay, Glamorgan Heritage Coast

27th August - A fantastic day trip to the beautiful Dunraven Bay, not ideal weather for photography in the practical sense though!

Grey skies were cleared by about 11.30am by the strong winds and as the tide turned and started to run back in, the sea and sky were everything a photographer could dream of.

"We" - a group of 13 photographers brought together by the TalkPhotography forums - started the day on the beach at Dunraven and then after lunch went down the steep, narrow path to Traeth Mawr. Here, the tide was coming in fast and the sea getting rougher with massive waves crashing into the rocks.

Trying to catch the wave at is biggest, most spectacular point of impact was almost addictive, but not the best environment for expensive cameras and lenses!

Some practical points to consider:-

Don't leave lens caps off, protect the lens form the weather at all times!

Have cleaning cloths handy.

Try not to change lenses too often - both the camera body and lens are vulnerable to the elements. Make sure to be as protected as possible from wind, rain etc.

Keep an eye on the weather, keep kit organised so it can be packed away quickly and don't lose small items.

Traeth Mawr - Glamorgan Heritage Coast, South Wales, UK - incoming tide.

Thursday, 25 August 2011

Priddy Fair 2011

Priddy Fair 2011 - family fun in the horse field, supper is cooking!

Another year, another Priddy Fair - every year since 1348! The fair has been continuously held every year since 1348, apart from the recent 2001 and 2007 foot-and-mouth epidemic years, and even in 2007 there was an event but without any livestock.

The past few years have seen a massive effort to return the fair to a more traditional style, cutting out some of the stalls that were tacky and some of those only of interest to travellers. The aim has also been to stop the influx of travellers camping around the village and breaking into fields, dumping rubbish etc.

There's no doubt it's been successful but from my point of view it's taken the 'colour' out of the event. Gone are the horses being ridden bare back through the crowds, gone is the singing in the Queen Victoria and Fair on the night before. Gone are the deals being made outside the New Inn and the fights in the bar.

The village has barriers on all 3 roads entering from the day before and the only access is by a pass for residents or other authorized vehicles. This year the police presence seemed more than ever, and the RSPCA were out in force too in an attempt to cut down the illegal sale of puppies.

It doesn't attract me as a photographer because the excitement is gone, though there were more people than ever taking photos this year. I've got some great memories and photographs of how things were in the past 20 or so years - that's what photography is all about for me, making sure I have a record of how things are, and to share them with you.

You can see some images from previous years at Priddy Fair on my website.

Wednesday, 24 August 2011

The Mendip Hills

I came across a website this morning that stated the following:-

Everything you need to know about Mendip Hills is right here. If you are visiting Mendip Hills for holidays or even for just a few hours this site will help you find accommodation in Mendip Hills , activities, restaurants, shopping and more about the Mendip Hills Surrounding Area.

There are sections called 'Mendip Hills Pictures', 'Mendip Hills Accommodation' etc. Sadly the information is in the main useless and inaccurate. I would hate to think that any overseas visitor found the site, and then planned a visit using the information it provides. It might even confuse some residents of Mendip!

So in the spirit of sharing there is an excellent website, that provides some of the best information for visitors and local residents alike, about places to eat, visit and stay.

Of course if you want to explore the Mendip Hills in photos then my own website has a wide selection of images, or you could go straight to Mendip Hills Photos.

The stone building is a post-medieval barn at Deer Leap, that has been restored.  There are fine views across the Somerset Levels from this area and a large car park.  Deer Leap car park and Picnic Area  - grid reference ST 518493 on the OS Explorer 141 map.

Restored post-medieval barn at Deer Leap.

View across the Somerset levels from Deer Leap.