It was destined to become the hottest day of the year so far, but it started very fresh with a gusty wind, and I had set my computer to record the Silverstone Grand Prix, to leave me the whole day in which to take photographs. Initially I had hoped to be receiving a new macro with image stabilisation, but what was delivered was a bitter disappointment that cost me close on twenty pounds to return, because it was for Nikon, not Canon. But that made me even more determined that I should take my mind off that blow and make it a day when I would take beautiful pictures, and subject matter did not matter!
And so it turned out, carried three cameras and an extra lens to cope with any eventuality. The extra warmth had at long last tempted damselflies to leave the water and seek the sky, and I cannot believe many people could have been inside, because I found cyclists, dog walkers, joggers, families with children, courting couples, people setting up picnics, people heading towards fairs, village fêtes and all by ten o’clock – no one was going to miss this spell of un-British weather of a Sunday! For a change also everyone I came across was smiling and willing to pass the time of day.
Not only that, seeing that I obviously mean t business by having two cameras around my neck, they even volunteered where I might find particular species without my even asking. However, with so many humans out and about finding shy birds such as kingfishers by the river, would seem to be ambitious! The suggestions of red kite was more realistic, and ironically later I was to see one alone overhead later in the afternoon. My first subjects were wild flowers, tree blossom being buffeted by the wind and the travelling shades across a field of grass. Not long afterwards, I thought I spotted some butterflies, but soon realised they were Demoiselle damselflies, and so I became determined to really try to get decent shots of both males and females, there turned out to be many more males, and when paired in flight seemed to be competing for the few females’ attention.
I drove to likely spots then walked deeper into woodland, or followed the tracks of disused railway lines, and on several occasions would spend time desperately trying to capture hoverflies in flight, but this was a day when I failed miserably and spent as much time erasing blurred images as actually shooting, I followed one river through waist high grass and nettles and on one occasion a dog disturbed a heron which took to the wing, but i failed to get a reasonable shot, but later I spotted it returning, but failed to see where it landed, so having retraced my steps, I turned again and walked quietly by the bank where the trees and bushes gave complete shade, and spotted it beyond some branches at the same time as it saw me, but I did get three shots off, one of which was passable. What really amazed me was just how many families with families were bathing or paddling in the river by the weirs, something I had not seen since swimming at Newnham had been stopped due to the Polio scare.
Whenever the chance occurs to photograph flowers I grab the opportunity, even though I can barely discern the difference between weeds and flowers and certainly can only name the most common half a dozen, but I choose viewpoints that accentuate their surrounding or contrast them against others of different hues, also I do love textures, and so leaves more often catch my eye.
Moving in close to attempt to capture the pollinators from bees to hoverflies is something else I endeavour to capture, but I do see fewer this time around, so I am very aware that crops in general are not going to enjoy a productive yield, so prices for our food are inevitably going to rise by the end of the growing season as producers ask higher prices in relation to lower amounts.
The gallery this time around reflects the variety I found and took correspondingly longer to process and make some sense, but also on my return I had the recording of the British Grand Prix to watch and that was quite a rollercoaster with fortunes changing frequently. It was a highly emotional several hours, but that filled me with dismay as to what should or could be done by the end of the week when the Nurburgring race is run. So many tyre failures is simply not acceptable.