Photographer and author Kevin Dwyer has produced three books of aerial photography of Ireland and is based in County Cork. Here he describes the waiting and celebrating experiences that comes with being an aerial photographer in Ireland, and how he captured the stunning image that became the cover of his latest book.
In 2007, I had a commission to take photographs of anchorages and harbours off the northern coast of Ireland. By early June I had a flight plan worked out, and I was ready to roll.
From my home near Ballycotton in County Cork I studied the weather forecasts in great detail, but nothing suitable developed in June. Potential flights were cancelled in both July and August because of bad weather. Later that month I went to the Weston Aerodrome in Leixlip, only to be told we were flying nowhere. I was becoming desperate.
Just toward the final days of September I could see a high pressure establishing itself off the north coast. I took off from Weston on 27th; it was a day from heaven.
As I approached my first target, a new marina in Coleraine County Derry/Londonderry, the island of Islay off the coast of Scotland (some 30 miles away) was clearly visible. In fact, I could still see it as I flew from Malin Head to Inishtrahull, the most northerly island of Ireland. The beaches of north Donegal were unbelievable; Tory Island – quite simply – looked out of this world.
We landed at Carrickfin Airport Donegal, refueled and took to the air again. Unexpectedly, St Patrick’s Purgatory in Lough Derg presented itself to me.
Seven photos later I had my cover shot for my latest book Dwyer’s Ireland – A View from Above.
Some things are just worth waiting for.