A Photographer’s Diary, Double TakeBy
The last few weeks I have been freeing myself from the office and heading off out with my camera to take the many spring scenes outside; though I am still waiting on some lively lamb photos. Though now I have a chair with me in the boot of the car, yet more equipment to add to my list, I know I can just pull up beside a field full of lambs and sit and wait.
One image I wanted to capture is a replica of one I took last year; there wasn’t anything wrong with it I just wanted to take it with my new camera and have it as a RAW image. I waited patiently for the weather to be right, for the daffodils to come out and then suddenly our mid-March summer caught me out. I’d been out to check the scene a week or so earlier and the daffodils were tightly in bud and needed at least three weeks. Out came the sun, at a time when I was busy and couldn’t get away from my desk, and very nearly took my scene away from me by the time I got there.
As I was knelt down on the ground, moving around to get me into the right position as close as possible to last year’s shot, I realised that actually, my original shot was far better and not just because I had left it almost too late to get there this time around.
It was the same thing when I was in Italy last October. For over five years I have wanted to go back and re-take some photos of the Faraglioni rocks on the island of Capri in the Bay of Naples. Again, purely to have it on a higher quality recording format. I had thought many times about going back and waiting for the perfect weather, sitting as long as I needed to get what I needed. I even took a paper copy of the image with me to help me line up as best I could.
When I got there I completely forgot exactly which path led down to the shoot position, I ended up walking to a harbour before realising the road was never going to wind around to get me into the same position as the photo I was carrying. When I eventually found the right path, I had completely forgotten that it was down many, many steps, and at the end of long day of walking and visiting old haunts it wasn’t quite what I wanted to find.
I walked along the footpath found the position and guess what? In the time that had passed since I was last there all the vegetation had grown up in front of where I was standing and the same shot was no longer possible. Five years or more I had thought about replicating the shot, in the same way that since last year I have been thinking about re-taking the daffodil shot and both times I discovered that actually, in both these cases, first was best.
I’ve learnt a quiet little lesson here, to trust my instincts and my eye at all times; if it looks right it will be right. And just like holidays, where we sometimes return to somewhere the following year because we had so much fun the time before, and then discover it was the people who were there that helped to make our memories so special, I realised that the first time of taking the shot, the moment, the experience, the joy in the image that I’ve captured, is always best.
Living in the beautiful rural county of Yorkshire it was perhaps natural for Ruth to have an affinity with the countryside and its wildlife. Creativity is Ruth’s driving force finding an outlet in television & radio she worked for many years as producer for BBC & ITV.
However a love of photography and for being surrounded by nature called her to go back to her photography training and bring pleasure and joy to people through her connection with our planet.
Staying in the moment when taking her images allows her to experience the natural magnificence unfolding before her eyes. It is this moment of mediation, of gratitude, that she evocatively conveys through her images.
Company: Ruth Bayley Landscape Photography
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