Its been a little while since I have written a post and I thought it would be the perfect opportunity to check in with you all. How's everyone doing?
As we are now in a new version of a national lockdown I thought I'd share with you some top tips for enjoying nature and what to photograph. Luckily this time around there are no restrictions on our exercise so please do make the most of the natural spaces we have around us. Its the most wonderful time of year for immersing yourself in the natural world. So many beautiful colours and amazing things to see! Plus nature is an antidote for stress: It can lower blood pressure and stress hormone levels, reduce nervous system arousal, enhance immune system function, increase self-esteem, reduce anxiety, and improve mood. This is all exactly what we need in these uncertain times.
So here we go - my top places to visit and some ideas on what to shoot too!
Autumn is a time of hunting for conkers, foraging for mushrooms and for kicking through great drifts of fallen leaves. The golden colours and textures in the trees and foliage are just incredible. We have also seen the first frost too! All of these things make for great wanderings and photography along the way.
Here are some shots of my local patch in the New Forest!
So this is really a subheader of the above but deserves it own section. Its massively important to remember to look down whilst out in the forest; the woodland floor is full of amazing fungi this time of year! I absolutely love searching the forest floor for fungi and I find them massively fascinating!
Its not just all about the part of the mushroom that we see, Mycelium is the part of the mushroom underground, that you can't see. Mycelium will entangle the roots of plants and trees and nourish the plant life. Trees and fungi have a complicated symbiotic relationship, supplying each other with essential nutrients and minerals; a relationship which has lasted more than 130 million years.
Mind blowing, isn't it! My top tips for photographing mushrooms is to underexpose and use a torch or backlight to help highlight those beautiful little things! The forest floor is a very dark place so it really helps make the fungi stand out!
Here are a few of my fave shots to date! (which I must say it was a tough decision choosing just a handful!)
If you follow me on social media, you know I am all about the ocean. From shooting seascapes to jumping right in, its just so good for the soul. At this time of year the sun rises and sets over the sea. With both of those events being at very sociable hours at this time of year, its achievable for most people (those who live down here on the south coast anyway!) to go and witness such a beautiful thing. I embarked on a new project this year and have not only been photographing the sea from the shoreline, but also from the deep too! Another awesome force of nature to witness at this time of year are the epic waves. I've spent alot of time in the surf recently catching those out on their boards. I have invested in an aquapac housing for my fuji as well as using my GoPro Hero 8 and both have their pros for shooting out in the ocean.
Here are a few of my recent favourites!
So whatever you have nearby, there is something to get out there and enjoy -
The great thing is, you don't need to have a fancy camera to capture these wonderful moments. Phones have such good cameras these days so don't let anything stop you photographing the wonders of nature! Even for those underwater shots there are so many underwater phone housings which are really affordable!
I hope this inspires you to get outside and enjoy some fresh air, the wonder of the woods and the cold, wild seas.
Take care and look after yourselves,