Victorian Decay

The Marine Lake in Southport is surrounded by a series of Victorian shelters – designed to allow the discerning visitor to the town to take in the view whilst keeping the worst excesses of the weather at bay. Time, wind, rain and neglect have left these shelters in a rather forlorn state – weather beaten and paint peeled and generally the worse for wear. They still do the same job, but not with the same panache that they would have done in their heyday…

A Wide View of the Beach

I’m still fascinated by the interplay of marram, sand, sea & sky that presents itself at Ainsdale Beach near Southport. On a good day the sky is cloudy, the tide is in, and the beach is empty. The heavy clouds seem to balance the foreground marram and the sand and sea sit neatly in between.

This photo was taken a while ago using my preferred technique of ETTR (expose to the right). This generally gives my a light and airy starting point for processing the image. On this shot I decided to push the contrast a little more than usual to give a more punchy feel to the image.

Along the Grassy Verge – Marshland and Water

Due to its proximity to home sweet home I’ve been out again along the big bank towards Banks just to the north of Southport. It’s a vast landscape, with sweeping views across to Blackpool: you can see the tower and the roller coaster clearly against the skyline. But it’s the detail and the light which make this such a fascinating spot for photography. As I’ve often mentioned, there’s not a lot of foreground interest along the north Sefton/Lancashire coast. It’s flat and quite featureless. So, it’s necessary to make use of every little thing (and a long depth of field) to get a striking shot.

This is the same drop of water as seen in the previous shot, but looking along the near edge away from the sunset. I hope you enjoy it…

A Soft and Gentle Sunset on the Southport Coast

Soft Light SunsetIn the hope of bagging a bright and colourful sunset full of spectacular reds and golds I tramped off along the big bank that runs from The Plough roudabout around the village of Banks and off towards Hesketh Bank. Running along the edge of this bank, in parts, is a low lying area that fills with water, mainly tidal as this area is all close to sea level. Although fairly small in terms of area, as a foreground element it works really well for my sort of minimal landscapes. I generally use a medium ND graduated filter to balance the sky, but in the case of this image I also took multiple exposures.

It’s an HDR, using 3 shots to slightly improve the dynamic range.  I’ve finally bitten the bullet and got CS6 to go with Lightroom, so I can merge to HDR in PS and then drop the 32 bit file back into LR for processing. Rather than ramp up the contrast on this image I’ve actually lowered the contrast significantly to try and produce a softer view of the sunset – this is probably more like what I actually saw than some of the other images that I will post later on… 😉