Another image of Y Lliwed and the ruins of the copper mines. This time it´s a two shot panorama using a 28mm lens. On the left is the reservoir, Llyn Llydaw. I´m not sure if the miners who toiled there all those years ago had much time to take in the grandeur of this Welsh mountain cwm, probably not, but it´s a wonderfully impressive place. And, for me, a black and white landscape – maybe it´s got to do with it´s history, maybe it´s the monochrome power of the massive cliffs on Y Lliwed, maybe it´s both, anyway, here it is, in all it´s black and white grandeur!
I´ve often walked past these ruins of the old copper mines on the Miners Track. I was usually on the way to do a climb on Y Lliwedd or in winter, one of the Trinity snow gullies on Yr Wyddfa, Snowdon. But this visit I wanted to photograph them, hopefully with some moody lighting. The weather was clearing as I got there, but at least there were still some clouds above Y Lliwedd in the background.
There´s a tremendous sense of history here. Industrial history with the copper mine, mountaineering history with Y Lliwedd. At the end of the 19th and beginning of the 20th Centuries Y Lliwed was one of the prime crags for the still young sport of rock climbing. It´s a big crag, one where it´s easy to get off route on. There is also mythological history here too, King Arthur is rumoured to be buried in a cave somewhere on the Y Lliwedd face, ready to spring forth when the kingdom is in danger.
I´ve just returned from a few days spent in Snowdonia, North Wales. This images shows a small stream in Cwm Idwal which eventually flows into Llyn Ogwen. It was a very nostalgic few days for me – I´ve spent a lot of time climbing and walking in this area and it was really good to get back there after all these years. The weather was cool and blustery when I arrived in Ogwen on Monday, as this shot shows, and I was hoping for some dramatic lighting – but I was to be disappointed. Both Tuesday and Wednesday, my last day there, were sunny and virtually cloudless! I know, normally when visiting Snowdonia one hopes for such weather, but I find mixed weather to be most creative for me. Such is life and although the weather wasn´t my sort of landscape photography weather, it was perfect walking weather.
I´ve just finished a new video for Uniper Energie here in Germany. It documents their new fish ladder on the River Lech near Landsberg, Bavaria, Germany. This is the second fish ladder that I´ve documented and they´re enormous fun to make. As with the last one we used a drone for the aerials, a GoPro Hero 4 for the underwater shots and a Nikon D800 for the “normal” stuff. For the sound recording I used a Zoom H6 recorder with a stereo mike as well as a hydrophone to supplement the mike on the GoPro (which, by the way, is not bad!). For the edit I used Premiere Pro and Speed Grade for the colour grading.
We had to film it after the construction work was finished but before the opening at the beginning of April, which only gave us a couple of weeks in March. Fortunately we had a couple of good sunny and relatively windless days for the shoot – I write windless because it makes the aerials a lot easier if you’re not fighting a wind as well. By the way, the “we” really means Kerstin Erbe and me, a compact team if ever there was one! The voice-over was spoken by Jörg-Peter Urbach
Returning Snow –
Snow has returned today,
I stand on the balcony
As my mind´s eye
Leaves tracks across the hill.
“The world today is sick to its thin blood for lack of elemental things, for fire before the hands, for water, for air, for the dear earth itself underfoot.” Henry Beston, The Outermost House.
The other day I read a blog post by Julian Hoffman called the Bugling Sky He prefaced it with a quote from Henry Beston´s The Outermost House. I´d never heard of Beston before, or this book, so I did a bit of research. The nature writer, Henry Beston, lived for a year in a small beach house he´d had built on the sands of Cape Cod. His description of this year spent on the shores of this fragile peninsula which stands on the eastern US seaboard, exposed to the power of the North Atlantic, is one of the most lyrical and descriptive pieces of nature writing in the English language. The above quote from The Outermost House resonated with me, and although he wrote this in 1928, it´s still just as relevant for us today.
…. I´m comfortable. And in this case, my living room.