RPS Landscape Group Newsletter - September 2021

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Landscape Group Newsletter September 2021 Volume 6 Number 6

© David Small SUBMISSIONS The copy date for submissions to the next newsletter (October) is Friday 24th September 2021. Please note that it may be necessary to hold some submissions for a future newsletter. If you have an idea for an article, please send a brief synopsis (up to 50 words) of the purpose and content of the piece. Please submit your images as jpeg attachments, sized to 72 dpi with 1200 pixels along the longest edge and borderless. Do not embed images in an email. Please send all submissions to: landscapenews@rps.org

September 2021 Volume 6 Number 6

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Quick links to RPS Landscape Website


Editorial by Peter Fortune, RPS Landscape SIG Newsletter Editor


Chair Chat by Richard Ellis RPS Landscape SIG Chair


By Degrees… an invitation to create a new portrait of Great Britain and Ireland by Mark Reeves


Into the Red by Peter Wells


A Book Review by Jan Harris


STOP PRESS RPS Landscape Group New Event, Interview with Jackson Moyles


From the Circles by Candia Peterson


RPS Landscape Group Instagram advert


Scottish Autumn by Kevin Gibbin


Appeal for Newsletter Articles


Profile of Fiona McCowan Committee Member without Portfolio


The Chilterns by David Small


RPS Landscape Group Monthly competition - Winner Announcement




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QUICK LINKS TO RPS LANDSCAPE GROUP WEBSITE The Landscape group website features photography submitted to the Landscape group monthly competitions. Member’s images are displayed throughout the RPS Landscape Group website. Click on the ‘image’ links below to open pages on RPS Landscape Group website. Find out how take part in the Landscape group events, circles, competitions and projects.

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Peter Fortune At the time of writing (late August) the holiday season is well underway and the Covid restrictions are reduced. All restrictions on travel have been severely reduced specially for those who have been double vaccinated. Are we really almost back to normal ? I do hope so and I hope the wretched Covid-19 virus is on its way out even if some of the scientists say otherwise. At least for the moment we can all get to some interesting places and enjoy capturing some stunning images. The only gloomy note is parts of Europe and North America still have restrictions for one’s return but if the virus continues to decline even they may be reduced/withdrawn. I am an optimist I don’t listen to those who say there will be a 3rd wave in the winter!

Regular readers will know I am “Nikon” guy and I follow what they are doing more closely than I do the other major brands. Their problems and the linked financial losses have been widely reported, together with the management plan to get back into profit in the year to March 2022. At the time of writing the Ist Quarter results for the 2021-2022 year have been published and the company is ahead of plan. The main reason is a flurry of new product launches - all of them mirrorless cameras and new mirrorless lenses. The range of mirrorless lenses now looks respectable and when one thinks that at the launch of their first new range mirrorless cameras - the Z6 & the Z7 they could only offer 2 lenses. They now have 11 Z mount lenses available ranging from 24 mm to 400 mm with all the popular zoom ranges catered for and an impressive roadmap of new lenses for the next 2 years. I myself recently ordered the new 105 mm f2.8 macro lens from my supplier and was told they had a waiting list of 104 customers waiting. 2 weeks later the list was down to 35 including me.

Windmill at Thorpeness near Aldeburgh, Suffolk

The downside to this huge effort to get their new products to market is that they have announced that all development on the DSLR range of products is stopping so the D850 & the D6 will be their last professional DSLR models. However it has to be said that upmarket DSLR users have a huge range of products to select from. Clearly Nikon have decided that the future is mirrorless! September 2021 Volume 6 Number 6

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Salisbury Cathedral across the fields In this edition of the Newsletter we have an interesting article by David Small about a fascinating but relatively unexplored area of the country - the Chilterns. As someone who used to live just North of the area I can confirm that it is beautiful and has many great shots possible whatever the weather, and a well supported Steam Engine Rally every year give it a boost. Peter Wells explains how to get into Infra Red photography and gives plenty of examples, The from the Circles contributor this month is Candia Peterson who, interestingly lives in the north east of the USA. Starting next month she is going to write an occasional column in the Newsletter illustrating what is like to be a photographer there. There is also a review, by Jan Harris. of a book about good Landscape Photography shots around the UK, and a description of three trips to Scotland in the Autumn by Kevin Gibbin Additionally all the usual items are there, the monthly competition winners, Events, Quick Links etc. Regular readers won’t be surprised to learn we remain keen to have more articles - see the front page of this Newsletter for details. Continuing our series of articles about Committee Members, this edition we feature Fiona McCowan who is Member without Portfolio, So, hopefully another packed newsletter with something for everyone. There is also an article about a special project. See Richards’ Chair Chat for a brief outline and a full article later. Enjoy the coming Autumn. Peter September 2021 Volume 6 Number 6

Watercolour of inside Norwich Cathedral

All Images © Peter Fortune Page 5

CHAIR CHAT By Richard Ellis, RPS Landscape SIG Chair

Cue drum roll, fanfare and cheering crowd for the fantastic news that we recently hit over one thousand members. This is an amazing achievement for a group that was formed just over five years ago. All of us on the committee are very grateful to each and every one of you for your support. Some of you have been with us since January 2016 and your contribution is very much appreciated. The recent disquiet at the National Trust and the resignation of the Chair Tim Parker serves as a timely reminder to us all of the need to focus on the needs of our members. We continue to develop new initiatives that we believe will be of interest to our membership as well as refining our existing offering. We have recently published our first location guide which you can view or download here. This covers coastal architecture between Shoreham and Newhaven and we hope that those of you based within striking distance of this piece of coastline will take the opportunity to explore the terrain. If there are any members who are inspired to write a similar guide we would love to hear from you at landscape@rps.org

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In this newsletter we are launching “By degrees” – an initiative with the Royal Geographical Society to photograph the landscape at the intersection of lines of latitude and longitude. As these are spread throughout the UK and Eire it will be a chance for us to come together as a group. I recently saw a post of a quote by Paulo Coelho “One day you will wake up and there won’t be any more time to do the things you’ve always wanted. Do it now”. I think for many of us the pandemic has put our plans on hold. Now is a good time to get out and visit that landscape you have always wanted to see and make the image. I hope that you will all manage to get out and enjoy the beauty of autumn and make some images that bring you joy. Best wishes Richard

Both images © Richard Ellis September 2021 Volume 6 Number 6

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By Degrees… an invitation to create a new portrait of Great Britain and Ireland By Mark Reeves ARPS

Members of the Landscape Group and the wider RPS are invited to participate in a project to create a unique and innovative portrait of Great Britain and Ireland. !By Degrees” will involve making landscape images at the all the locations where lines of latitude and longitude intersect in Scotland, England, Wales and Ireland.

Please read on to find out how you can take part

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It is hoped that all 45 intersections will be photographed - even though some of them are in remote areas and many of them might not feature in the average landscape photographer’s list of top destinations! The point of the project is to photograph these places in as interesting or inspiring ways as possible. It is also hoped that members who live relatively close to the intersections, or who will be visiting anyway for work or leisure, will offer to participate rather than other members travelling significant distances to complete the project. There are no limits on the number of members who may participate and in cases where several images are submitted for one location, a single image will be selected for the printed publication. All submitted images will be featured on the project page on the RPS website and a selection of images – one from each intersection – will be featured in a special edition of the landscape group printed magazine. In addition, it is hoped to arrange special exhibitions at RPS House and at the London HQ of the Royal Geographical Society. Why do it? It’s mainly for fun, possibly for fame and probably not for fortune. The project’s main value will be the enjoyment by those who participate and those who subsequently read about it and view the images. We are delighted that the selection panel will include Simon Hill Hon.FRPS president of the RPS, Nigel Clifford FRGS president of the Royal Geographical Society, Joe Cornish Hon.FRPS chair of the landscape distinctions panel and Vanda Ralevska member of Arena photographers and brand ambassador for KASE Filters. If you are not sure that you can make an interesting image at your nearest intersection, you may like draw some inspiration and ideas from these videos: Thomas Heaton www.youtube.com/watch?v=hHXiuxSd6Hk Nigel Danson www.youtube.com/watch?v=pcr2MRLp5Lg

How to take part All members of the landscape group and the RPS are invited to take part. To do this please follow the link below to register your participation. Registering is important so that we can track progress of the project. All photography needs to be completed and submitted by the end of March 2022. Once you have registered you will be sent detailed instructions concerning the photography and how to submit your images.

www.rps.org/groups/landscape/projects/by-degreesMark Reeves Events Manager (Professional Events)

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Peter Wells ARPS CPAGB BPE3 EFIAP Like most photographers I often found my self revisiting places I had been to before and taking essentially the same images as I had previously taken. I had read much about infra red photography and thought it might allow me to retake some shots, but from a totally new perspective. In this brief article I will hopefully whet the readers appetite for taking the plunge and at least trying out this technique. Like many more technical subjects Infra Red is often shrouded in mystery but in reality it is very easy to get into and the results can be really interesting and “different”.

In Chatsworth Grounds I don’t propose to get into the technical ins and outs but suffice it to say that our eyesight and “normal” photography centres around seeing the world with the visible part of the light spectrum. With IR however we see the world using a different part of the spectrum using only IR light which we cannot see with the naked eye. There are two main approaches to IR photography, both very different. The first requires the use of a very dark red R72 filter (about £45) attached to the front of the lens. This may sound simple but has many drawbacks. As the filter is so dark it is often very difficult to see your subject. You will probably have to compose your image before fitting the filter and then allow for the fact that the amount of light cut out by the IR filter means you must use a very long exposure and hence a tripod. September2021 Volume 6 Number 6

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Church Graveyard at Ford The second, and my preferred solution, was to use an IR modified camera. Without getting into technicalities, this involves taking a camera to pieces and removing an internal filter and replacing it with another which only lets light through of a particular wavelength in the IR spectrum. You could be brave and give yourself a meaty DIY project but for most of us it will just be a step too far. An internet search will reveal companies who will take your camera (you might decide to buy a spare body for this) and do the IR conversion for you for between £200 to £300. You will need to decide what IR filter you want installing but the most popular is probably the 720nm to give you good mono images.

Down in the Forest September2021 Volume 6 Number 6

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In my case I looked for an already converted IR camera on an auction site and managed to buy a converted Lumix G2 that was compatible with my existing micro 4/3 lenses for less than £100 – what a bargain! So, armed with my new camera I have returned to many places I knew and literally saw them in a new light.

Fountains Abbey

Having taken the images I do a small amount of post processing by removing the saturation, increasing the contrast and sometimes playing about with the red slider to give the best effect.

Lindesfarne September2021 Volume 6 Number 6

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The results are very different to “normal” images but in their own way offer a new and interesting artistic approach.


There are also advanced techniques which allow you to “channel swap” and replace colours in the original IR image to give even more interesting effects.

Wicker Elephants at Sudeley Castle September2021 Volume 6 Number 6

All images © Peter Wells ARPS CPAGB BPE3 EFIAP Page 13

B r i t a i n ’s B e s t L a n d s c a p e s and How to Photograph Them Reviewed by Jan Harris Britain’s Best Landscapes and how to Photograph them is written by Robert Harvey BA ARPS EFIAP CSci CEnv MCIWEM

My first impression of the book was that it contained some excellent photographs, and I enjoyed looking through them; many will be inspirational to landscape photographers. This first part of the book is a ‘How To’ guide. The second part contains details of 100 outstanding locations, with OS grid references, postcodes for parking, details of accessibility, and the best times to photograph each one.

The book starts by discussing what ‘Landscape’ is in photography, and the factors that produced the British Landscape. I found it fascinating to consider the influences, both natural and human, that produced the varied landscape we see across Britain today. Next it considers why you would want to do Landscape photography (a question I ask myself regularly when getting out of bed at silly o’clock to shoot another dawn!) and what kit you need to do it.

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Then there is some excellent advice about planning and preparing to go on a Landscape shoot – researching a location and considering the season, the light, the weather, and the time of day that will suit it best. For example the chapter on photographing the coast includes useful information and advice about tides, and the combination of light and tide level that best suit a number of locations. There are chapters discussing technical aspects of Landscape photography – focal length, depth of field, exposure (including HDR and long exposure), types of lighting, and the use of colour and monochrome – which will be useful for a photographer starting out in Landscape photography - and chapters on developing your creativity and visual style for more experienced photographers. The locations covered in the book are classic Landscape locations throughout Britain, with locations in all the National Parks. Inevitably some areas of the country have a higher density of locations included than others. If you want a comprehensive location guide, then you might prefer to choose a book that covers the specific area of the country you want to visit. This is a book to help you learn to plan and improve your photography – and the more you plan the more you can take advantage of your opportunities to capture the best landscape images.

The Book - Britain’s Best Landscapes and How to Photograph Them Available from: www.naturalworldphotography.net Price £29.95

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One of the great pleasures of my regular interaction with the RPS and everything it has to offer is my monthly participation in one of the eCircles of the Landscape Group. In our group we are ten in number and the members have been reasonably consistent in the couple of years since I joined. Every month, we each submit an image into a shared Dropbox folder along with a short paragraph describing a little bit about the image. Where were we, why was it interesting and what was our motivation; what were the difficulties or challenges and, possibly, why are we satisfied – or sometimes not – with the result. We also include our camera and lens details, camera settings, tripod or not and a brief description of what we did in post. Occasionally one of us will enter two versions of an image for critical comparison: perhaps the same shot in black and white and in colour or perhaps two different crops or orientations. The images can be new or from the archives and the subjects within the landscape genre range from up close and personal to the wide and expansive. Once all images are submitted by the end of the month, comments are invited and are in by the 15th of the succeeding month. Comments are encouraged to be both constructive and politely critical. “Wow, what a shot” is discouraged without qualification but we follow a set of loose guidelines in which we say what particularly attracts us to the image, what – if anything – we don’t like or where we think improvements could be made. The latter might be to do with crop, treatment of highlights or shadows, composition – anything really. Over the period of the pandemic, we have become rather close as a group and our participation in the Circle has gone beyond the monthly sharing of images. We frequently share articles and YouTube videos that we have enjoyed or found instructive and, most importantly, since last year – in the Brave New World of virtual meetings – we have started a monthly Zoom call in which we just chew the fat together on a huge range of topics that usually start photographically and end up with something Covid (inevitably!!). Of the ten members of the group, three of us are permanently outside of the UK – one in Switzerland, one in the Lot region of Southwest France and me in the Northeast of the US. Our Blighty-based members are from the South East of England to the far North of Scotland and several points in between. I’ve asked the members of our Circle to choose their favourite images from the past twelve months and I think you will see that not only is there a lot of talent in the group, we also enjoy a wide range of subjects, style, location and interpretation. September 2021 Volume 6 Number 6

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Andy Leonard LRPS, based in Scotland shot his dramatic image, Quirang in the Snow, on a stormy day on the Isle of Skye.

Quirang in the Snow © Andrew Leonard

David Lawson from High Wycombe posted his lovely sunset silhouetted scene over the Thames at Spade Oak.

Spade Oak © David Lawson September 2021 Volume 6 Number 6

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Gerry Phillipson LRPS from France is associated for, me at least, with woodland and water landscapes, often very intimate. His Lake, Trees and Mist has a lovely subtle feel to it Lake, trees and mist © Gerry Philipsson

Jill Taylor LRPS, who is lucky enough to live with the Alps on her doorstep showed a great head for heights in her Looking Down. Looking Down © Jill Taylor

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Martyn Bennett LRPS from Herefordshire has given us a very subtle winter landscape, Dead Tree and Snow, taken from very close to his home.

Dead Tree and Snow © Martyn Bennett LRPS

His dead tree is, I know, a favourite subject for him and he revisits it in different ways throughout the year.

Peter Wells ARPS from West Yorkshire gave us a lovely example of infrared photography with his Clumber Park Church.

Clumber Park Church © Peter Wells September 2021 Volume 6 Number 6

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Leigh Foster LRPS from York posted his image of the Duddo Stones, “the Stonehenge of the North” in Northumberland against a lovely golden sunset over rape fields.

Duddo Stones, the Stonehenge of the North © Leigh Foster

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Roger Styles from Lancashire presented an image, very popular with the group for its great composition, of Kelly Hall Tarn near Coniston.

Kelly Hall Tarn © Roger Styles Paul Diette, originally from the US was living in the shadow of Tower Bridge during the first lockdown. His first contributions were very dramatic cityscapes including this one of the bridge at night. www.foundlightphotographer.com

Tower Bridge at night © Paul Diette September 2021 Volume 6 Number 6

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My own contribution is a shot taken in Maine earlier this summer, Sunrise over the Pier on Old Orchard Beach

Sunrise over the Pier on Old Orchard Beach © Candia Peterson

S PE C I A L AN N OU N C E ME N T Candia Peterson, who lives in the North East of the USA will be starting an occasional series of articles in the next edition (October) of the newsletter. The series will be titled “Letter from America” (with apologies to Alistair Cooke) She will write about photography in North America.

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Scottish Autumn By

Kevin Gibbin The images in this article are based on three trips to Scotland in the Autumn; two of those trips were to the Cairngorms, the third included a visit to Skye. It is interesting to reflect on the weather conditions encountered which varied from mist to bright autumn sunshine to snow – even in October – and of course rain. In fact some of the images made in snowy conditions are among my favourites. One lesson to be learnt is that even though there are truly magnificent landscapes to be photographed there are also more intimate details that can be the subject of the image. One of the benefits of image-making in misty conditions is that colours become quite subdued and attenuated plus adding depth to the photograph. The first image, taken in Rothiemurchus forest typifies this.

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Image 2, taken mid-morning, also shows the more subtle colour rendition produced by mist. What a bonus to find the two fishermen in just the right place.

In total contrast is Image 3 with wonderful reflections of vibrant autumn colours taken on Loch Garten in the Abernethy Forest on a quiet but sunny autumn day.

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Also taken with the benefit of strong autumn sun is Image 4, of grasses in Craigellachie National Nature Reserve; I used my Nikkor 70 – 200 mm lens plus a 1.7X extender with a focal length of 270mm for this shot – landscape photography is not all about wide-angle lenses! An aperture of F/4.8 provides a lovely out-of-focus background while preserving the lovely autumn orange colours to offset the green of the grasses.

Image 5 is a detail shot of Rowan with a sprinkling of snow on some of the leaves and showing the lovely red berries, a detail taken at 200mm focal length.

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In Image 9, I have tried to contrast the delicacy of the twiggery and the few leaves with the in focus trunk in the foreground, the out of focus trunks and the lovely diffuse oranges of the foliage in the background.

Image 10 is in Glen Affric, one of the loveliest of the northern glens, taken into the light, another way of diffusing the colours and providing an almost painterly scene, again using a relatively long focal length of 195mm and a small aperture (F/16)

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Eilean Donan castle is easily recognised in Image 11, taken from a less usual viewpoint on the hillside above the lochs, the weather a reminder of my first ever visit to Scotland with my then Fiancee over 50 years ago. Scotland doesn’t change!

I could not resist including the last two images, both on Skye. The Fairy Pools is a magical place especially when the burn is in flood as here. Cloud hangs dark and brooding over the Cuillin.

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My final image, 13, is of the Old Man of Storr and readers may recognise it as “My Favourite Image”, taken after a climb in awful conditions to the vantage point and then a long wait in rain, hail and wind for this brief burst of sun through a hailstorm.

Scotland in any season is a landscape photographers heaven, but perhaps Autumn is the most exquisite time of the year.

All images © Kevin Gibbin

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APPEAL FOR ARTICLES We Are Perilously Short of Newsletter Articles! It’s easy! Just submit your text (500 words) in an email and attach your jpg images. (72 dpi,1200 px along the longest edge and borderless) If you have produced an article(s) in the past you are in no way restricted from writing another one. Professional Photographers – this is an opportunity to showcase what you do!

Have a go! If you need help contact Peter Fortune landscapenews@rps.org

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This is the fifth of the series of articles about our committee members and their photographic journeys. This month we feature Fiona McCowan. Profile of Fiona McCowan committee member without portfolio Q. When did you first become interested in photography and how? In 2013, after 30 years in the corporate world Fiona took a 6 month sabbatical to study French at Nice University. After a very enjoyable 6 months she decided not to return to work. She always had an interest in art and photography so in 2015 she borrowed a camera and attended a local beginners photography course. What started 6 years ago as a hobby has become a passion. Q What does photography mean to you? She reports that photography means a lot of things to her - it is an escape; a way to explore the outdoors and a creative outlet. She loves being in wild and remote places with her camera. Q. How do you approach a shooting? Do you choose the location/subject in advance, or do you just drive somewhere and start taking pictures?

Fiona is a planner - she will chose a location and if it is a coastal site she will check the tides, weather ICM Gondolas, Venice etc. When she arrives at the location she leaves her camera in its bag and walks around, prior to starting to shoot. She also enjoys going out locally for a walk with her camera just to shoot things that catch her eye, especially the intimate landscape. Q. What do you most like to shoot? Seascapes. For Fiona a perfect day is spent on a quiet beach shooting minimalist seascapes. Since March 2020, with Covid-19, this has not been possible so she has started to shoot the local fauna and flora. She has enjoyed exploring her local ancient wood through the seasons. September 2021 Volume 6 Number 6

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The Carrelets, France

Q. What’s next on your photographic journey? More projects with handmade books as the output. Fiona prefers to work on a series of images or projects rather than individual images. During lockdown she did a RPS book making workshop with Alex Hare. She is now hooked on making books! She is currently working on a few projects and books - one on the sea, the sky and the horizon which is finally nearing completion. Other ongoing projects include paths through her local woodland inspired by Richard Long’s work ‘Lines made by walking’ and field edge silhouettes. She is longing to return to the coast to start another sea based project. September 2021 Volume 6 Number 6

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Q. What is your favourite camera? Fiona has a Canon 6d Mark II and a Canon mirrorless M5 but the 6d Mark II is her favourite.

One of Fiona’s Book Covers made for a friend

All Images © Fiona McCowan

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David Small The Chilterns is a large area of chalk escarpment situated north west of London, from Goring Gap to Hitchin, which could loosely be regarded as middle England. In 1965 the Chiltern Hills were designated as an area of outstanding natural beauty, which with its stunning countryside offered high levels of protection. It’s quintessential nature includes rolling countryside, ancient woodlands, rural market towns, agriculture and of course a plentiful population. I am lucky to live near the highest point of the Chilterns (Haddington Hill 267m) in the small town of Wendover with Coombe Hill, 7m lower, affording it some protection from the prevailing weather incoming from the south west. Most of my photography involves early morning trips to the local areas such as hills, woodland and reservoirs. I don’t generally travel too far! My choice of location is often dependant on weather conditions. We are lucky here in that we don’t generally experience the extremes of weather suffered by other parts of the country, the ferocity of weather fronts dissipated over the course of the journey inland.

The ancient Icknield Way runs along Ivinghoe Beacon in Hertfordshire. Stretching from Norfolk to Wiltshire, it is one of the oldest tracks in Great Britain, pre-dating the Romans. This image is a series of 5 portrait shots stitched together showing Ivinghoe Beacon right of centre. A pre-dawn excursion, patiently waiting for sunrise. Although a rural area, it’s unusual to see such a large expanse with is little human intervention.

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Pitstone Windmill, a stones throw from Ivinghoe Beacon, is the oldest windmill in Britain and Grade 2 listed. It is now owned by The National Trust. This particular image was taken, unusually for me, one evening as Covid restrictions eased last year. The beautiful light was warm and enhanced the wheat field, gently swaying in the breeze. Broken cloud drifted across the sky. As much as we love a clear blue sky, photographically, it can leave us wanting. The main element and focal point being the windmill itself. It was made all the more special for me, as my son accompanied me on this occasion. No photographic journey across the Chilterns, for me, should pass up the opportunity of bluebells. During late April and early May parts of the Chilterns are adorned in swathes of vibrant Hyacinthoides non-scripta, or more commonly known as bluebells.

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The Wendover arm of the Grand Union canal was opened in 1799. Plagued with leaks from the onset, the arm is dry in parts and is undergoing a restoration program. It is not currently navigable, yet it provides a wonderful, undisturbed location for wildlife to flourish. Kingfishers are a regular sight. This image shows a small stretch as the early sun rises over Wendover woods. The soft but warming light illuminates the trees opposite an opening in the tree lined cover.

Another classic scene across the Chilterns, like many parts of the country is harvest time. Capturing fresh hay bales before they are stored away for later use, is a well trodden path for many photographers.

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Early morning or late evening often provides delicate light and never ending shadows. A bonus is often “access all areas” without causing damage to crops. As we capture natural scenes it is important that we preserve crops, habitat and livelihood. The old adage “take only pictures, leave only footprints” is more relevant than ever in these changing and challenging times for our planet.

These bales were taken near Tring on the Hertfordshire/Buckinghamshire border. As usual, I had the place to myself before heading home for breakfast.

“A cold winters morning was the inspiration for this shot. Calm and crisp, and a more forgiving hour” Several reservoirs were built to serve the Grand Union canal in the heyday of water transportation and the industrial revolution. (See next Page)Whilst now redundant in the need for transport, they still feed the canal system which serves a greater importance for leisure and wildlife. The Tring reservoirs are a site of special scientific interest (SSSI) due to the large variety of wildlife they support, partially due to their location at the base of the chalk escarpments.

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This final image is typical of the chalk based Chiltern Hills. Short, sharp and steep. This particular hill is a favourite of mine. Overlooking the pretty village of Ellesborough, Beacon Hill is not large in height but plentiful in stature. I consider myself a fit individual but this brief excursion always leaves me gasping for air. This photograph shows the very top of the hill, the undulations accentuated by the first rays of sunlight. This hill also features along the Icknield Way and so provides a steady stream of people treading the same footsteps as others have for thousands of years. Perhaps they could see the beauty even then. A dawn outing will often secure a private moment for anyone wishing to make the effort but you are likely being watched. A CCTV camera sited in front of the trees, protecting the Chequers Estate to the other side, must have captured me out of breath many times!

The Chilterns are perhaps an overlooked part of the country. Not as spectacular as the dramatic vista’s of the Lake District, the foreboding emptiness of Dartmoor or the isolation and sheer power that the coast can afford. If you take time to seek out and appreciate the smaller, more delicate parts the Chilterns have to offer, then you will be rewarded with pleasant views, gentle walks, a variety of landscapes, rivers, canals, crystal clear chalk streams, along with plentiful and varied wildlife, pretty towns and villages. Perhaps even a welcoming pub or cafe to refresh

All Images © David Small

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RPS Landscape Group Monthly Competition Ju l y a n d A u g u s t 2 0 2 1 Winners Announcement Members submitted another stunning collection of images to the Landscape Group competition

1st Place - July

Last Leaves By Simon Turnbull FRPS September 2021 Volume 6 Number 6

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Last Leaves By Simon Turnbull FRPS The wonderful Borrrowdale Valley (Lake District) is a place close to my heart, having grown up in nearby Keswick. It’s a truly magical corner of the world. I took this image one Autumn hoping for the area's usual splendid colours but was thwarted by a recent storm which had swept away nearly every leaf left in the valley. “Last Leaves” felt like an appropriate title. Thankfully a few golden leaves remained and a fairly typical Lake District “claggy” day made for an excellent backdrop with the distant fells, the silver birch striking an elegant pose within the scene. I do enjoy these quiet, understated images and was very grateful to have been there to take the shot. View more of Simon's photography on his website and social media.Website: www.simonturnbullphotography.com Instagram: @simonturnbullphotography and Youtube: here Simon will be running two RPS Autumn Workshops where he will teach woodland photography techniques. Find out more here. Comments made by RPS Landscape Members when voting for Simon's image • •

Beautiful composition; delicate colours; fine detail and principally the atmosphere and mood evoked. I like the composition, the colour and atmosphere of the image

This image just grabbed me as soon as I saw it. It is a mighty fine composition and very well executed. Just lovely in every respect. Such a wonderfully atmospheric image with beautiful light.

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I like the ethereal quality of the image, the layers and the mist add to the effect. So atmospheric, composition just right, with that wonderful birch tree - RC. This gentle landscape captures the subtle palette both of early/late light and the autumnal tints of the countryside. The tree is sufficiently bold (1/3) of the image to act as a an immediate focal point and yet not so large that it obscures the context of the landscape in which it lives. There is detail throughout the image even within the misty areas and the sky has a suggestion of clouds. An image to keep returning to, something new each time one looks at it. Lovely soft palette, very atmospheric. Beautifully executed and composed. Touch of highlight besides the tree looks great. A delicate image full of atmosphere and impact. Nicely composed, with depth and a lovely sense of place Loved the composition, the broody nature of the light and the recession in the background. I like the composition, the colour and atmosphere of the image Ethereal and beautiful with lovely subtle tones Claire Brooks: "Last Leaves" A beautifully soft image, with pleasing compositional elements. It looks like it is raining and the remaining leaves on the birch are weighed down with the weight of the water. Atmospheric image with a beautiful colour palette.

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2nd Place Five Trees, Iceland By Colin Westgate

3rd Place Temple in Mist By Dennis Anguige FRPS

Read the full article for July’s competition winners here

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1st Place - August River Rib on a Misty Morning by John McDowall

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River Rib on a Misty Morning by John McDowall One of my favourite local walks is a lovely circular route along two sides of the Rib Valley with wonderful views across the rolling Hertfordshire countryside. This scene in nearby meadows was taken at Sunrise on a beautiful misty morning and shows the River Rib winding its way between a few trees. In the 19th century a local Mill situated on the Rib was used to produce thin paper on which Bibles were printed and the paper was laid out to dry in what became known as ‘Laundry Meadows’. My vision was to capture both in camera and post processing to emulate a “Turneresque” painterly image and I was quite happy with the end result. View more of John's photography on instagram @john_mcdowall photography and Twitter @jwmcdowall Comments made by RPS Landscape Members when voting for John's image • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

I like the contrast between the sunlight on the grass in the foreground and the coolness of the misty background. Loved the painterly 'old master' feeling generated by the image. I like the collection of browns, the feel of a painting, a bit of mystery that the fog gives, I like that the water turns. I am curious where it will go. I like the mood too. Makes me think. Transports me to the landscape. I am there. The soft light & processing made the image look like a painting. I particularly like the way this image has been processed. It would make a lovely canvas print. A moody picture, full of atmosphere. Composition spot on. Excellent post processing. Full marks! I enjoyed the soft tonal palette and the dreamy quality of River Rib on a Misty Morning. River Rib on a misty morning has been beautifully handled and communicated a sense of pace and tranquility. I chose River Rib on a Misty Morning because I love the light, particularly on the plant in the bottom right hand corner, and the composition draws me in, resulting in a very atmospheric image. River Rib....I love the colour palette used in this image, it reminds me of a Constable painting. I think the image has an artistic content which I find very pleasing. Great composition that evokes a sense of both time and place. Quite enchanting and lovely capture. The soft misty light and treatment make for an image evoking a feeling of peace and tranquility. For me images which make me wish I was there are inspiring. I wish I’d been there. This is a fabulous shot in which there is huge tonal range but a well composed foreground of water undergrowth and trees which leads into the mist - and I could enjoy looking at this for a long time appreciating different elements. It stood out because of the 17th century Dutch painting atmosphere it exudes. The lighting gives this photo a very calming painterly feel. Great atmosphere and sense of calm. Good composition with the river leading the eye into the image. Wonderful atmosphere and what beautiful light on the foreground grasses.

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2nd Place

Haystacks By Anthony Wright ARPS

3rd Place

Devon Hartland by Alan Ranger ARPS

Read the full article for August’s competition winners here September 2021 Volume 6 Number 6

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Landscape Group Events Listed below are the events coming up that are not sold out, cancelled or postponed at the time of writing. Go to the Landscape Events page to view all events organised by the Landscape Group here or click on the linked images below.

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Featured Event…

The area of Assynt is located North of Ullapool in one of the most beautiful mountainous areas of the Scottish Highlands. Its rugged landscape and many lochs create a fascinating foreground to the many iconic mountain peaks such as Suilven, Stac Pollaidh, Cul Beag and Cul Mor. This week-long workshop will find us enveloped in this dramatic landscape at the most dynamic time of year. Workshop leader Mark Banks will be on hand throughout each day offering advice, tips and tricks to help you get the most out of this incredible location. During the week Mark will also give informal demonstrations of image processing and offer image review sessions for participants.

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