Nope, you are absolutely NOT dreaming.
Your eyes are merely adjusting to what happens when a photographic genius like Peter Gordon plants himself in the multicoloured Wicklow Mountains. We’re quite literally speechless so it’s over to Peter the images from his new book and .
Nature’s Blanket – Glenmacnass River and Valley, Wicklow
The heather that lines the Wicklow Mountains is amongst the best in Ireland. For this image I wanted to capture that colour in combination with dramatic lighting and shape. I began walking at sunrise down the Glenmacnass River and came across this great split in the river that had a thick bunch of heather in its centre. Shortly after I arrived the sun came up and the sun lit the sky a wonderful pink and hit the distant mountains beyond. The tree on the horizon provided a perfect anchor point within this beautiful and rugged landscape.
The bright light of the sky versus the more subtle light in our foreground can sometimes be problematic for our cameras around sunrise and sunset and may result in the sky going white. Try using a graduated neutral density filter to create balance between sky and foreground.
Gale Force – Carrigmore, Wicklow National Park
The bog in is a sight to behold in autumn. The blanket cover up around really glows at sunset. For this picture I hiked up Carrigmore (it’s a short walk) at sunset to find a suitable vista. The rolling hills surrounded by wonderful autumnal oranges and reds are truly inspiring. With not a house in sight for miles I had this beautiful vista and wonderful evening light all to myself.
Visit the Sally Gap and use any wind to your advantage. Choose a shutter speed of 1 second at sunset and create a foreground effect that has a combination of sharpness and blur.
Icon – Upper Lake, Glendalough National Park
There was a feeling in the air that something was going to give. Glendalough’s upper lake is unquestionably one of the most beautiful vistas in Ireland. This image was taken about an hour after sunrise, which during autumn was at the very respectable time of 9am. The mist had moved in and out of the valley and the light had threatened to break through all morning. After about an hour of waiting the light hit the clump of autumnal trees on the right. The sky broke and the stillness of the reflection held firm. A truly amazing moment.
Visit Glendalough’s Upper Lake for an autumn sunrise. Times for getting up for dawn are very reasonable at this time of year. Don’t be put off if the conditions don’t look favorable at first. Things can change fast here and the best light is often just around the corner.
Silent Dawn – Lower Lake Glendalough
The autumn colours at Glendalough’s lower lake formed a perfect mirror reflection. There wasn’t a breath of wind in the air and conditions couldn’t have been better. I wanted to create a tight intimate composition that highlighted the stillness of the morning and focused the eye on the beauty of the colour. Locations such as this really capture the rugged beauty of County Wicklow for me.
Don’t be afraid to exclude the sky from images. Ask yourself: Does the sky give added value to my picture? Are the colours of the sky or cloud formations worth including in the image? Focusing on details and more intimate compositions when in the landscape can also produce better results.
Wild Monument – Sally Gap, Co Wicklow
These clump of trees in the Sally Gap are an iconic monument on Wicklows landscape. I wanted to place them as part of the land so decided to photograph them at distance with a longer lens. The autumn bog was in full bloom and provided a perfect palette to showcase their beauty. The little bog river in the distance also provided a great line to lead the eye towards the distant hills.
Don’t be afraid to try minimalist compositions. Place trees that have a strong graphic quality within the landscape and give them lots of space to breath. Less can often be more so just let the landscape do the talking.
Intrigued? Have a flick through Peter’s magnificent book Wild Garden.
Inspired? Peter also does photography workshops in his muse County of Wicklow.
Now we’ve got our words back, we’ll remind you that our blog has serious form when it comes to images of Ireland, including photographers Enda Kavanagh, Sean Tomkins, Simon Browne and Chris Hill. Prepare your jaw to drop.