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Precarious pose at Meteora
My Photographic Gallery  - page 3
Serendipity and planning
in successful
Stormy afternoon - River Itchen
Robin on wall
Sunset, Itchen estuary
Misty dawn, River Itchen
While any keen photographer will often want to carefully plan shots to obtain exactly the effect wanted, it is also true that sometimes the best pictures are ‘grab shots’. Obviously, one has to have the camera ready for the brief occasion when an image presents itself. The shot on the left  is a good example, taken at a popular viewpoint at the Meteora rocks in Greece. I’d been taking general shots of rocks and monasteries lit by the late afternoon sun, when I noticed this crazy couple! I call the shot - ‘Precarious!’.
‘Misty Afternoon at Martyr Worthy’ is one of my most successful photographs. There was no planning - the image just presented itself by chance on a country walk.  It won a trophy at Camera Club and has appeared on calendars and in two national magazines. In one of these the competition remit was ‘Old Hat’ and I often refer to the picture by this title - and call myself ‘oldhat’ on some websites !
‘Stormy Afternoon at Brambridge’  was a chance shot on another country walk by the River Itchen. I would have liked the swan a little nearer, but a heavy shower was rapidly approaching. It led me to plan the other two shots here, for a competition involving three slides on the same theme. I decided to match the afternoon shot with a dawn photo, higher up the course of the same river, and a sunset on the estuary.
A little planning went into ‘Cyprus Postmistress’, as I had asked her to sit in the light of her open doorway, but a lot of serendipity was involved. We had stopped in a remote mountain village to check the correct route back to our hotel, when she came out of the post office, which was also her kitchen and the village cafe, and invited us, with sign language, to join her for some coffee.
‘Sunset  at Bitterne’ and ‘Dawn at Martyr Worthy’  both involved forward planning - consulting a map for the position and my Photographer’s Sundial for the time and direction of the sunrise or sunset, and waiting for suitable weather. In the case of the sunrise shot, it involved anticipating the mist, based on a weather forecast, and getting up early in time to drive and walk to the best spot. Fortunately, the river mist appeared as predicted.
I’m not a bird photographer, but this robin, perched on a churchyard wall, was so friendly that it chose to pose for me and I had to remove my longest lens for a shorter telephoto.
Cyprus postmistress
Photo Gallery page 3
See also my page on the Viewfinders of Romsey Camera Club web-site and my ePhotozine gallery
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Latest revision of this page  March 2009
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