I am Rod Wynne-Powell, and this is my way to pass on snippets either of a technical nature, or related to what I am currently doing or hope to be doing in the near future.

A third-person description follows:
Professional photographer, Lightroom and Photoshop Workflow trainer, Consultant, digital image retoucher, author, and tech-editor for Martin Evening's many 'Photoshop for Photographers' books.

For over twenty years, Rod has had a client list of large and small companies, which reads like the ‘who’s who’ of the imaging, advertising and software industries. He has a background in Commercial/Industrial Photography, was Sales Manager for a leading London-based colour laboratory and has trained many digital photographers on a one-to-one basis, in the UK and Europe.
Still a pre-release tester for Adobe in the US, for Photoshop, he is also very much involved in the taking of a wide range of photographs, as can be seen in the galleries.

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Monday, 24 December 2018

Marston Lake — a Possible New Venue

         Since the rain had stopped, I decided to nip round to the lock-up and get the bike and reconnoitre a nearby lake just beyond the turn off to the station beyond the Allotments. I was heading towards Lidlington, but before there, there was a gated entrance to a lake reserved for anglers and just beyond, a small lay-by. I checked this out first because I had in mind that it would be ideal for me to park the car, if I were to visit with a heavy tripod and the big lens at some time in the future.
         On this occasion I travelled light; without any camera; there is a small pedestrian gap beyond the gate, that I wheeled the bike through, then I parked it beyond the bend, so as to be hidden from the road, and leant it against a tree, and followed the road around yet another bend, and came to a junction, where the track went around the perimeter of the lake in both directions. Ahead was a parked estate car with its rear door open and its driver engaged on his phone, I nodded that I’d wait patiently till he was free and withdrew to a distance to allow him the privacy to continue his call.
         Shortly he wound down his window, I enquired as to whether he felt that since I was not an angler, whether it was possible for me to enter the area to take photos. He answered immediately that there was no objection, and during the ensuing conversation I discovered that he was the local Water Bailiff; so I had definitely found the very best person to learn more about the lake and its wildlife. Most importantly I learned they did have kingfishers, and he even suggested where they were most likely to be found. He explained that the path to the right was short and only went as far as the last jetty from which the anglers fished.
         I decided to investigate this path first, and found it was a very short distance. I returned to his parked car and continued our conversation, and even in that short period of time I noticed that there was a fair amount of bird life. We chatted a while longer, then I set off around clockwise from the junction, having asked his name having volunteered mine and given him one of my business cards.
         I strolled slowly along the path, every so often taking paths towards the foreshore to get an idea of the viewpoints each offered. As I returned to the main path, I tried to remember the man’s name, and realised that it had not registered at all in my failing brain! I was going to have to embarrass myself, by asking him when I next met up with him! I refer to the route around the lake as a path, but it is in fact a road in that it is wide along its entire route with enough width in parts to accommodate cars being parked without blocking it for others going further round.
         Every time the route forked off to give access to a small area from which to fish, I would investigate, though in some cases, I did not go right to the water’s edge, because either I did not want to disturb the angler, or I could see that it was very muddy and steep due to all the recent rain. I soon reached the bank directly opposite to the bailiff’ car, and soon after that I spotted that on that side, there was no enclosing fence, and between there was an area of scrub with a public footpath beyond.
         I walked as far as I could in that direction then turned back and returned to the bailiff’s car, where I apologised for so swiftly forgetting his name, and learned it was Mark, which I realised was so easy to mark for the future, had I made that simple mental note on the first occasion! We chatted some more, before I then headed back to my bike and rode home.
         At that time I was not sure when I would return, but in the afternoon of Christmas Eve, I returned with my lightest long lens the Tamron 150-600mm and this time parked in the lay-by just beyond the entrance, set up the lens and camera on my carbon fibre tripod with the gimbal head, locked the car, and headed in towards the lake. I decided that as the sun was already getting low, I would head to the right and the short distance to its very end, where I set up the tripod on the short and somewhat fragile wooden jetty. After a while I heard the whistle-like call of a robin who came to investigate. I also caught sight of a blue tit, but it was far shyer, as was a blackbird, out on the water I spotted a couple of cormorants, several coots and a lone young grebe, and I was lucky enough to capture its good fortune to succeed to secure itself a reasonable sized fish for tea.
         I soon found that the sun was falling into clouds as it fell towards the horizon, so I took a few further shots as I headed for the gate and my car, and a couple of the setting sun over Brogborough. Though brief, it was a very good way to head into Christmas.

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