In The Field, Iveragh Peninsula, Kerry, Ireland

Iveragh Peninsula - Kerry

Many a trail, beach and hilltop has been explored, yet despite the beauty of the Iveragh peninsula in south-west Ireland I am yet to make an exposure. If the truth be told, panic is starting to set in.

Midge bitten and stubborn as ever, I am standing by a tripod as the last light of day creeps across the Peninsula. Above, the moon shines, and as the camera timer counts down 30 seconds, that mild panic slowly fades away, I finally have an image in the bag!.

Last Light, Iveragh Peninsula, Co Kerry Ireland

Last Light, Iveragh Peninsula, Co Kerry Ireland

The following morning, a little after 4a.m the boisterous sound of the dawn chorus stirs meA short time later I am slipping off some rocks and prancing along the shoreline at Derrynane beach near Caherdaniel.

Surrounded by the Farraniaragh & Cahernageeha mountains, it is amongst the most photogenic beaches in Ireland.

After much prancing, I am peering through the viewfinder watching the cool Atlantic weave along the rippled shoreline. Tripping the shutter, I succumb to temptation, and add a Lee big stopper to the front of the lens. It is a filter I have a love hate relationship with. I find it fiddly, why oh why camera manufacturers never build neutral density capabilities into the cameras firmware I will never know. One frame later, the big stopper is off and replaced by a soft 0.3 Lee GND. The two resulting images are below! I'm not sure which one I prefer.

 

Derrynane beach

Derrynane beach

Further and higher along the shoreline, and against the magnificent backdrop of Derrynane Bay, I've got a tripod spread eagled on the rocks. Instead of concentrating on hyperfocal distance and composition, I'm shooting video on an iPhone. Like Windows 95, I don't do multitasking very well, so it is goodbye iPhone and hello live view.

The light is wonderful, my biggest question, which composition works best? Vertical to emphasize the Sea thrift or horizontally to show the beauty of the bay. Pixels are cheap, and as the sun paints the flowers I shoot a vertical composition. Something doesn't quite feel right. 

Switching back to the horizontal composition, the shutter is tripped again. Yep! the horizontal composition works better. The cracks in the rock mirror the patterns in the sand, while the head of sea thrift stands out against the tide, while the water coming in from the left of the scene is just enough to emphasis the sweeping shoreline.

Derrynane Bay, County Kerry, Ireland

Derrynane Bay, County Kerry, Ireland

That mild panic is well and truly gone!.

 

All images are © Peter McCabe