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A View, a Camera and You - Ravenglass

PUBLISHED: 00:52 11 June 2013

Ravenglass Sunset towards Black Coombe

Ravenglass Sunset towards Black Coombe

mark gilligan

Award-winning photographer Mark Gilligan presents the latest in a series of tips to help you get the best from your camera

Sunset over SaltcoatsSunset over Saltcoats

Landscape photography in the Lake District evokes images of the fells and the bodies of water that give this marvelous region its name. But there are some wonderfully diverse coastal landscapes to be seen and these present interesting photographic opportunities. Ravenglass on the western coast is a case in point.

Coleridge described it as ‘The Trident’ where the Rivers Mite, Irt and Esk converge to create an estuary that is worth exploring. Its position means the sunsets here can be spectacular.

There is ample car parking in the village but sometimes I approach it via the lane that runs down to Saltcoats where there is a path that leads back along the coast.

It can be a glorious sight as the sun descends and illuminates Ravenglass but, of course, you can never guarantee that perfect light. For that reason I have chosen a main image that isn’t bathed in golden sunset rays but one which reflects the tranquility of this quiet corner of Cumbria at dusk.

Fisherman’s cottages, huddled together with their backs to the elements, shimmering reflections in the water, boats stranded awaiting the next tide and Black Coombe sitting ominously in the background. It has ‘photograph’ written all over it.

I took this one while walking the mudflats at the lowest point of the tide. Infact, it was the night that Usain Bolt won the 200 meters at the Olympics!

As always, take care watching your step and the incoming ‘race’. It can be very quick indeed. Boots or ‘wellies’ are a must. I used a tripod but you can easily hand hold if the light is sufficient or for the more advanced amongst you ‘up the iso’ to 800 and let the camera cope with the lower light.

As a contrast, I also spun round and took the image above looking the other way and the sky is awesome.

The patterns that are naturally formed and the position you want to place objects in the frame are vital components. Get as much in camera as you can. You can’t do that when you arrive back home! The balance of a well-exposed and composed image makes for something that people will return to look at time and time again.

Mr Bolt might have wowed the world that night, but I was being wowed by this corner of the world.

Let’s get technical

Panorama of the village

Camera: Canon 5dmk2,

Lens: Canon EF24-105 L series

Settings: f/20 @0.3secs, ISO 100

Lee 2 stop graduated filter

Giottos Carbon Tripod and cable release

Boat at Sunset

Camera: Canon 5dmk2,

Lens: Canon EF24-105 L series

Settings: f/20 @0.5secs, ISO 100

Lee 3 + 1 stop graduated filter

Giottos Carbon Tripod and cable release

Take a hike

Mark Gilligan is a regular contributor to Lancashire Life. He and broadcaster David Powell Thompson from the Wainwright Walks television series stage one day walks in the Lake District combining David’s knowledge of the area with Mark’s photographic teaching skills. You can find out more at www.wastwaterphotography.co.uk and on Twitter @wastwater1

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