Tag: nature photography

The Beauty in Spring

Life in lockdown is tough. Sometimes I sit by my window, inhale the sweet Spring air. And, I long to be sat on a train, hurtling through countryside – sunlight filtering through a grimy window and warming my face. Fields of yellow rushing by, music pumping through my headphones. An iced coffee on the table in front of me, a backpack filled with snacks and my trusty Nikon. I want to feel the excitement of the final platform – knowing that adventure awaits. Lockdown may stunt the adventures and stilt the hope but though our time outside is limited, it cannot take away the beauty of the season.

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Spring at the Marshes Photo Diary

Working from home, self-isolation and endless cancelled plans; Spring 2020 hasn’t been as beautiful as I had hoped it would be. That said, one small benefit of being holed up indoors and away from the office is that I’ve been able to visit the Marshes with my camera in tow. A short two minute drive from me, the Marshes is (currently) the ideal option for those of us who are choosing to social-distance. A large, outdoor space that is relatively quiet during the weekday, it’s a great place to fill your lungs with fresh air and get close to nature without the worry of making others ill.

Today I thought I’d share some Spring photos from the Marshes.

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A New Years Walk Around Dulwich Park

On New Years Eve my boyfriend and I went to our favourite pizza place – Voodoo Rays, and then on to a couple of quiet pubs to neck drinks and make each other laugh. We ate all the pizza, drank all the drinks and danced at home to a really weird playlist of mediocre music from the past decade. It honestly was the best way to see in 2020 and wave goodbye to the absolute horror-show of the past year. Nothing screams fresh start quite like a Hot Mix 5 and a badly-made bourbon sours with the best friend and boyfriend you could ever wish for.

Naturally when we woke up on the 1st of January we were feeling a little worse for wear. Nursing hangovers and strangely aching muscles (I taught him how to slut drop and I think that was a little more exercise than we’re both used to lately) we armed ourselves with cameras and set off in to the grey morning in search of birds, wildlife and fresh air.

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Autumn in Images – Photography Post

There’s nothing I love more than getting outside with my camera in Autumn; I am endlessly inspired by the beautiful colours and all of the wonderful flora and fauna these months bring.

For today’s Blogtober post I thought I would share with you some of my favourite photographs I have taken during Autumns past and present. Some of these images you may recognise from previous posts, others I have not shared on my blog. I like all of these images because for me they encapsulate what Autumn is about and bring about happy memories/feelings within me. I do not consider myself to be a photographer though, so please no judgement on the technical aspects or compositions of the following shots!

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Autumn in the Park – Photo Diary

The ground is carpeted thick with leaves, brown and red and orange; curling up and crackling underfoot like flames, licking out at my ankles. Overhead the gentle thwack of feathers as a bright green parakeet takes cover high in the treetops, blending in among the green and yellow. The air is cold and crisp yet the sun shines hotly, filtering through the trees and dappling everything with a warm glow.

Walking through the park at lunchtime is a calming experience, especially now that Autumn has arrived.

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Visiting The British Wildlife Centre

Last week I was feeling rather ill and sorry for myself – after a whole Friday spent laying listlessly in bed I desperately needed to do something that would cheer me up. When Saturday arrived it was cold, but with brilliant sunshine – the perfect Autumn morning. And although I still felt rather under the weather, I couldn’t waste the day – we decided to pay a visit to the British Wildlife Centre.

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Spring is in The Air…Sunday Ramblings

It’s been a few weeks since I last blogged.

Without realising it, I think I had become a bit disheartened with it all, as is not too uncommon a feeling for me. My lack of motivation combined with my low mood led to my writing and photography hiatus – it wasn’t intentional, but I can’t say I actively fought with the apathy. If you’re a creative in any sense of the word, you’ll be familiar with the feeling i’m describing.

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Autumn Appreciation Post

Piles of golden, rust and burgundy leaves gently gather on the pavement, lining the street with colour as they fall from the trees.

Sunlight filters through branches laden with chestnuts, acorns and conkers and dances in ripples across the floor, illuminating the fallen leaves like sparks of fire. The air is cold and crisp.

It is October and Autumn is in full swing.

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A Trip To The RSPB Lodge

Gareth and I just recently bought our very first home. Located in St Neots, it’s a little further afield than I am accustomed to and, whilst I feel excited to be moving, I am not without apprehension too. To make the transition a little easier Gareth and I have spent a couple of weekends exploring St Neots and the surrounding areas. Where we currently live I am spoiled by lush green country parks and woodland. I spend a great deal of time walking in these spaces, feeding the deer and spotting nature.

Naturally I am quite sad to wave goodbye to my favourite haunts however there is one major draw to our new location; The Lodge. Situated a town over, the Lodge is the RSPB headquarters. We are RSPB members and always enjoy exploring new reserves so we were very keen to check this one out. Last weekend we collected up my younger brother Ben and my mum and we did just that!

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A Trip to Hever Castle

I have always thought that it is difficult to take photographs of beautiful things; what you can capture with the camera lens is invariably different to what you can see with your own two eyes. I actually find it a lot easier to take ordinary or even ugly things and snap them in a flattering light. Anyway, I knew this would be the case when we visited Hever Castle because quite frankly the place is amazing.

Childhood home to Anne Boleyn, Hever Castle is situated in Hever, Kent and stands proudly on 125 acres of grounds and award-winning gardens. It was actually the latter that attracted us to Hever Castle in the first place as we both love to walk through manicured gardens and I adore looking at flowers. On Sunday the sun was shining and it was incredibly warm for so early in April; it was the perfect day to pay a visit.

Entrance in to the grounds and castle is quite steep at £16.90 per adult but let me be upfront about it; it’s so worth it.

Entering the grounds I was immediately enamoured with the gardens. Even so early in to Spring such a lot of work had gone in to them. Tulips bobbed in the breeze, roses were blooming and the air was thick with the scent of lavender. Upon entering we walked through the walled gardens which were immaculately kept and very impressive.

 

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We walked through these gardens for a little while, taking in the surroundings and marvelling at just how nice everything was (me desperate to capture a shot of a bee.)  On our walk we discovered that there archery lessons going on in one of the fields. There is a small fee for those who want to take part but you choose how many arrows you want to pay for and it’s very reasonably priced. Naturally Gareth wanted to have a go at this despite my protests about my lack of hand/eye coordination. In the end I relented and it was a lot of fun (even if I was utterly hopeless.) One of the great things about Hever Castle is that there is a lot to do with mazes, archery, craft activities and more to keep you occupied for the whole day; it’s a true family day out.

Afterwards we stopped for lunch at the one of the restaurants. I believe there are three of these, each serving delicious food from stone baked pizzas to handmade sausage rolls, sandwiches and cold lemonade. We ate on the grass in the sunshine.

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Later we explored the water maze which was a really fun little attraction that seemed to amuse all the children; Gareth and myself included. We were definitely giggling as we tried to avoid the spouts of water that jetted up randomly as we navigated our way to the centre and safety. I’m proud to report that we remained completely dry.

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Finally we stopped for ice creams (our first of the year; mine wild strawberry and cream his chocolate) before heading inside the castle. At first we were not sure if we should skip it, having spent a long afternoon walking through the gardens. Eventually we decided to venture inside as we had paid for it and didn’t want to miss it if it was particularly stunning.

The castle has a rich history spanning over 700 years so it is definitely not one to miss.  Inside the castle walls are beautifully decorated bedrooms, elegant libraries and dining rooms. There is definitely a feeling of opulence about the place but that aside it’s just really interesting to imagine Anne Boleyn growing up in a space like that (and then imagining yourself growing up in a space like that.)

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Overall we had a fantastic day at Hever Castle and I can’t recommend it enough. From the vibrant flowers bordering the gardens to the magnificent castle and all the interesting activities to immerse yourself in; there truly is something to please and delight everyone. I can’t wait to pay another visit to this wonderful place.

A Spring Walk at Weald

Weald is one of my favourite country parks and for good reason; whether you’re walking in Autumn, Winter, Spring or Summer it’s really beautiful and there’s plenty to see.

On Sunday I found myself home alone and without any plans. I hadn’t visited Weald this year and with the sun shining down I decided it would be a good time to take a walk.

If you have read my Spring Appreciation Post you’ll know that this season is one of my favourites. I just love all the flora and fauna that’s around this time of year. I knew that Weald would be just lovely.

With the sun warming my skin I walked down towards the deer enclosure and the vast lake at the bottom of the hill. I always like to visit the deer when at Weald as they are such sweet little creatures. You can actually buy food to feed them with at the cafe. Lots of families had spent the morning feeding the deer though, so instead of desperately seeking out the pellets in visitors hands, the deer basked in the warmth- clearly overfed! (So I didn’t bother to buy any deer food on this particular trip.)

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After spending some time watching the deer and the ducks I decided to head back up the hill to the little cafe and get myself something to eat. The cafe sells lots of goodies; soft plush animals, books and pin badges. I purchased a cup of sweet tea and a generously sized scone with butter and jam. I took my food outside and ate at one of the benches as the weather was so pleasant.

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Weald is composed of many rolling hills and hollows, meadows and woodland. After eating and still clutching my cup of tea, I trundled up another hill and some concrete steps to reach a wooded area where the floor was littered with buttery yellow daffodils and soft green moss.

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Weald was very busy with families playing football, flying kites and picnicking. Laughter and children’s excited squeals were carried on the gentle breeze and I could feel my mood lighten as I took in the scenes unfolding around me. Blossoms had started to bloom and Weald was a riot of colour once again.

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As I mentioned earlier, there is plenty to see at Weald; all that’s required is a keen eye. I spotted lots of different types of fungi, flowers and plants. As I stooped to snap a cluster of mushrooms a young child approached me and asked me what I was taking a picture of. As I pointed out the mushrooms the child exclaimed in delight “I’ve never seen mushrooms outside before!” His mother helpfully reminded him that they weren’t edible (thank God for responsible adults.)

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I walked for around two hours, taking time to sit and soak in my surroundings every now and then. I left Weald feeling much happier and positive. More Spring walks are definitely in the pipeline and I can’t wait to get my picnic basket out again!