Monday, 3 May 2010

Why does it always rain on me?

The grey brooding skies of yesterday have turned into big, fat cold raindrops. There was wild talk of getting up at dawn to capture the emerging sun but after us all schlepping to Brancaster Staithe last night to photograph the golden glow of the setting sun, the sky unhappily turned from murky white to black without bothering to reveal the sunset to us at all. So the thought of getting up at five to experience another whiteout didn't seem attractive.  And frankly the sun hasn't bothered to put its hat on today so I'm glad of the extra hours in bed and a terribly civilized breakfast instead.   
We're off pointing our cameras at more picturesque mills but it's so incredibly cold, I didn't think to pack gloves and manipulating the freezing tripods is not filling us with joy.  Tom shows us some pano stitching but my attempt fails as my frozen fingers choose some bizarre setting which makes the images look like I took them wearing infra-red night.  Tom suggests when the weather is grey and unpromising we should revert to black and white to aim for texture and contrast.  I'm too much of a fair weather photographer to want to fling myself on the sodden ground, foresightful mackintosh square or not, so I fire off a few and retreat back to shelter of the van.
We decamp to a café adjoining a large camping, leisure shop and I go off in search of gloves, preferably fingerless ones.  I can't find any but settle for some peculiar leopard print leg-warmers to fashion some sort of emergency arms and hand cosies. Everyone might laugh but my fingers are starting to turn less blue. Tom stitches the panoramic shots he took earlier, I don’t bother with mine – I’ll try again on a sunnier day.
After a fine pub lunch at Southwold we wrap up again and venture down to the beach. Perhaps the famously vibrant beach huts can inspire us even through the gloom. I'm actually pretty happy with some of my shots, (one even gets a 'honourable mention' on Tom Mackie's 2010 workshop photo competition). Perhaps a cold, bleak beach on a rain spattered day is the perfect opportunity for inspiration. Though I still think I work better when I'm not shivering, and my camera agrees!  

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