Wester Ross

Years ago, during my undergraduate years, I used to take a break with my father in September for a week. It was usually to go somewhere hill walking as he had a week off from work in September and it coincided nicely before I left for university each year.

I have great memories from these trips and usually came back super fit from just a week of hillwalking or Munro Bagging as it is commonly known. I am keenly aware of how fortunate I am to have this time with my father and it has been the source of many memories I have thought about over the years since then.

Although it had nothing to do with hill walking, one of my fondest memories the second year that we went together was phoning home to find out that I had got into The University of St Andrews. It had been a stressful summer waiting to find out as it was the only university I had applied to. Putting all your eggs in one basket? Moi? It started the ball rolling towards my higher education. Little did I know at the time that I would still be in higher education for the next eight years.

This year, as I had accumulated a little too much vacation time from my own work, I had the opportunity to rekindle the September get away with my father. We visited Wester Ross, in particular the Gairloch area. I used to spend a lot of time in this area when I was younger as it was a favourite holiday location of my parents and I had become very attached to the area as I grew up.

Click to see the larger image.

Although no hillwalking was taken on this trip we did spend a lot of time walking and travelling around the area, and booking dinner at the Old Inn every night! It was a welcome break from the central region and it was nice that there is no cellular reception whatsoever. Like, none. But there was wifi at the campsite and the Old Inn, as long as 512kb/s is your thing. This isn’t a complaint, but it is reality in this area.

We also had the worst coffee in all of Scotland at Mountain Coffee, primarily because it was close to the campsite. It is perfect if you like Starbucks prices and dishwater tasting coffee. I also had a nice surprise at the Gale Centre, they have an amazing Rain Garden which I must add to the 10000 Rain Gardens for Scotland Project.

Anyway, I did take some photos, primarily to see what the iPhone 11 Pro could do with the new cameras, which did not disappoint me especially in low light. I have a lot of landscape photographs below because it is hard to take photographs in such a beautiful place without being in landscape :-)

Gairloch Bay from Strath.

Gairloch Bay at dusk.

Across Gairloch Bay towards Free Church of Scotland

From Cove looking back towards Poolewe and the Isle of Ewe

Stac Pollaidh in the middle with Beinn an Eoin on the left with its summit covered in cloud.

Entrance to Quad

Was super happy for a couple of reasons yesterday. The Instagram account @thehub_bnw reposted my photo from the University of Glasgow entitled Entrance to Quad.  It was taken on my last trip to Glasgow and it was nice to see it get some recognition and over 500 likes so far (on their account), not that I am counting them.

Entrance to the Quad.

The other thing that made me happy yesterday was finally opening my Web Design site, Adam Design Studio. So far April has been quite good :-)


Apple Store Photo Walk - Exploring the Grassmarket

I had a fun time this morning taking a guided tour around the Grassmarket in Edinburgh with members of the Apple Team and other iPhone / iPad photographers. The apple team members were very helpful in explaining how to use the Camera Application and brought along some hardware from the store to try out!

Although what the Apple Team members were explaining was prior knowledge to me, it was good to meet new people and to help them with some of the functions of their applications and photography techniques.

Interestingly the majority of the people were older (OAP's), this took me a little by surprise, but it was great to see an older generation really get to grips with this technology. It was surprising as I have never seen a lot of people (of an older generation) use this technology so adeptly.

The afternoon was taken over by a client meeting signing off a website, which will be part of the portfolio when this site relaunches in March. The site is Tenth Floor Photography, go visit it and leave some nice comments on his first blog post! :-)

For now I'll leave you with some of the shots from earlier today in the Grassmarket and surrounding area.!

Social Photography

In the years that I have been taking photographs it has been primarily a solitary pursuit. In fairness I have always enjoyed the freedom of wandering wherever and whenever with my camera. It never really occurred to me before to meet up with strangers to go take photographs.

This changed a couple of months ago when I started chatting to some people through Instagram and after (what can only be considered to be way to much beer and not enough planning) we decided to get a group together to take photo's on the wettest day Glasgow has ever seen.

Even though the day was wet the spirits were kept high and this led to a second meeting with new (and familiar) people yesterday in Edinburgh. The weather was a mixed bag but eventually blue skies presented themselves at Newhaven Harbour. 

I feel very lucky that I have met such great group of people that are always willing to share experiences and knowledge that makes the day so much fun. The group selfie was taken by @alycoste and includes @lisajparis, @chappygbr, @davidgulliver_photography and @redinscotland.

Have posted a few of the shots from Newhaven Harbour below, click for the large versions. 




Landscape Photography

While drinking my morning tea and sifting through my RSS feed I came across a very good instructional post from PetaPixel this morning:

"10 Ways to Become a Better Landscape Photographer in the Next Year"

At least two of the ten tips struct a chord with me:

#4 Stop caring about success of other photographers: For some reason I find validation in the number of likes I get on Instagram. Finding validation on any form of social media is quite possibly the most moronic thing that I have ever done and will be something that I will be working on getting away from in the next year! 

#10 Always try to find something extra in your photograph: It's not always something I do and I think I have become a bit formulaic in the way I have been shooting of late, taking photographs that could have been taken by anybody instead of shooting something that I see.

The post is written by Albert Dros (a Dutch photographer) and his shots really are amazing and definitely worth aspiring to. He also has tutorials and a blog on his site that is well worth spending time with.