Hermitage Castle | PT.I – 720nm Infrared | 35Chronicle

35mm, black & white, infrared, photography, ruins, rural, skies, structures

Monumental.


You may recall that I posted a few frames from the Chapel ruins here at the site of Hermitage Castle, back on the 9th of the month and, as we all know , a lot has changed since then. All I can say now is that without the benefit of foresight, I am so glad that we made the trip to Hermitage when we did. Not weeks before, around eighty homes were evacuated due to the severe floods in the area, the Hermitage water was some 12-15 feet higher than usual and, even most of the roads leading here had collapsed. As a result, it was touch and go as to whether we might have made it at all, however, fortunately for us, the road was passable right up to the point of the small bridge at the monument’s road-end, thus – a dead end. But we got here. 

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The monuments origins date back to around 1240 and was believed to have started out its life as a hunting lodge not far away from the castle itself. The castle we see today, however, wasn’t believed to have been built until the early to mid-fourteenth century and as you would imagine, is steeped in history and – horror stories. For me, though, its foreboding presence amidst wide expanses of moorland, the now peaceful Hermitage Water below it and, its views to the hills, make Hermitage Castle not only a beautiful place to be but, a very pleasing frame-filler, too. More information, if you wish, can be found here: https://www.undiscoveredscotland.co.uk/hawick/hermitagecastle/index.html – I do hope you’ll enjoy these few frames.

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Needless to say, these are recently archived shots – no trips disobeying government guidelines regarding COVID-19 have been made and, as one working on the front-line of healthcare myself, may I please urge everyone to maintain our  conscientious attitudes in fighting this outbreak. We can only do this together. I sincerely hope that all of you and yours are keeping well! 

Remember – Please, Stay at Home.

R. 

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[All frames: Fujifilm X100 – Internal 720nm Infrared Conversion / f8.0 – ISO:320]


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The Curse of Morton Castle | PT.I | 35Chronicle

35mm, black & white, infrared, landscape, photography, ruins, rural, skies, structures, trees, waterscape

When Light Plays Games | 720nm IR.


As a serious, enthusiastic photographer, I ask myself again and again – just how many times am I prepared to return to the same place in order to get the photograph that I long to capture? The image that I know I can bag, if the conditions play the game nicely? The answer, every time, has to be – “until I get the shot”. So it is the case here, at Morton Castle. It seems not to matter what time of year I visit, nor, what the weather forecasters says it’s going to be doing the evening before; for, whenever I arrive here, the clouds always close in. Every, bleedin’, time. Anyone who has set out to capture a scene only to be thwarted by the conditions, knows exactly what I’m talking about. It’s frustrating to say the least. Don’t you think?

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On the other hand, I am a firm believer that with a little patience, I am (usually always) rewarded with images that I did not envisage capturing at all, making most if not all a very pleasant surprise and yet something else in life to be completely happy about. Friday past was the fourth time I have made the trip to Morton to capture the ruin and its surroundings in infrared, after assurances by the Met. Office of clear skies and sunshine overhead until around lunchtime. Turning up during mid-morning however, afforded no preferential treatment and, as usual – the clouds were waiting. Though I had hoped we’d drive right past them, ’twas not to be. 

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Every now and then, pockets of blue around the sun would appear and, shafts of undiffused light would reign in short bursts, occasionally wide enough to light up the ground sufficiently enough to facilitate my pulse racing a little in my eagerness to trip another frame before the light disappeared again. For around two hours, the light would continue to cheekily lead me up and down the proverbial garden path, and, back up again in its mockery of my efforts. But patience is everything and, despite still not getting anything close to the frames I had hoped to preserve yesterday – I decided that even when the light plays games, I will play my own.

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The curse of Morton? A blessing in disguise, perhaps.

R.

[All images: Fujifilm X100 720nm IR Conversion | 35mm Equiv. | f8.0 | ISO:400]


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Hermitage’s Chapel Ruin | 720nm Infrared | 35Chronicle

35mm, black & white, infrared, landscape, photography, ruins, rural, structures

A Place in Time.


Friday’s are a fabulous day for scouting. We call it – the Long Friday. The littlest ‘un will finish school at 3 and will be collected by his after-school club, there to remain until around 5.30pm. It makes for one day in the week when we don’t have to get back too quickly during the afternoon and wherever we might end up, well, it gives us a little more time to explore. Such was the case last week when we made the journey to Hermitage Castle. 

Just five miles from the English border, in Liddesdale, the castle ruins stand as a forbidding, high-walled monument amidst wide and oppressive moorland – it’s huge arch facing to the hills to the west. Just a couple of hundred yards behind it, lay the ruins of the chapel, alongside the peacefully babbling Hermitage Water. Having spent over an hour around the castle (naturally, I will be sharing a few frames from there, too) and, with the sun gracing the early afternoon for longer periods than we’ve enjoyed lately, I was very excited to capture the chapel ruins. A more peaceful spot than this have I yet had the sheer pleasure to enjoy (aside perhaps from the beautifully secluded Morton Castle). 

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I | Windows to the East. Fujifilm X100 720nm IR – 35mm – 1/140th – f8 – ISO:320

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II | Out to Hermitage Castle – Three Little Windows. Fujifilm X100 720nm IR – 35mm – 1/170th – f8 – ISO:320

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There really isn’t much left here by way of a building as such. A burial enclosure languishes in the far east corner, grave stones and markers dot the ground on the far side too, and, three little windows look out to Hermitage Castle and to the hills beyond. We stayed a while, trying our best to decipher carvings on old stones, making a few IR frames and generally enjoying the peace and the sound of the water, while the sun warmed our backs on an otherwise chilly day. If there was a day where I could wish time to slow down, this one would have been the day. The chapel itself is thought to have pre-dated the castle itself by up to two hundred years (there is little information to either argue or corroborate this) and was believed to have been built during the mid 12th century. I’m surprised that there’s any part of it left at all. But, I’m extremely glad of it. 

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III | Burial Enclosure. Fujifilm X100 720nm IR – 35mm – 1/160th – f8 – ISO:320

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Not exactly landscape photography, nor structural either; just a few views from one beautiful place in time. I hope you’ll enjoy them. 

-R-

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Lowther Castle – PT.III | VIS Collection | 35Chronicle

black & white, photography, ruins, rural, structures

To Be Continued… One Day.


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IV | 1/60th – f8.0 – ISO:200

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V | 1/60th – f8.0 – ISO:200

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VI | 1/60th – f8.0 – ISO:200

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VII | 1/125th – f8.0 – ISO:100

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Closer Still(s) | PT.XXVIII | Tulips [Mono.]

35mm, black & white, close-up, macro, nature, night / low-light, photography

Moving Out, Moving In.


Keeping to recent changes in ideas that I’ve been having about how I photograph, process and publish (basically, I am feeling the need to shake things up a little after a winter ‘lull’) – I decided that, whilst I continue to shoot in RAW and JPG, I would for a while concentrate solely on working with OOC JPGS with as little processing as I could let myself get away with, no matter what my subject matter.

A couple of days ago I took some time out with my X100S to shoot these beautiful yellow tulips in my newly put-together macro-studio (aka: the Black Room, aka: the cupboard under the stairs!) and after an hour or so playing with various exposures, I emerged back into the light of the middle landing with some pleasing frames. After uploading to Lr – checking my spot-metered exposures, I set to work in editing my chosen keepers. Here, are the three finalists, processed from the resultant JPGS, with minor tweaks to contrast, clarity and shadow depth, with just a hint of split-toning for a tiny smidgen of warmth. 

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I | 1/10th” – f8.0 – ISO:200

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II | 1/8th” – f8.0 – ISO:200

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III | 1/4th” – f8.0 – ISO:200

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Of course, at the sizes I’ve chosen to upload (I never upload full-resolution frames) – for web-viewing, the difference may be a little more difficult to appreciate when it comes to RAW versus JPG IQ however, when considering that all frames were exposed at ISO:200, I really don’t think that (aside from the obvious processing latitude advantages of trickier RAW exposures) there really would not have been all that much to shout about. I still don’t know the answer to that one either – I haven’t even looked at the RAWs yet. These frames please me that much. 

Thank you so much for reading my pages and, I hope you too will enjoy these captures.

– R –

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Lowther Castle – PT.II | VIS Collection | 35Chronicle

28mm, 35mm, black & white, photography, ruins, rural, structures

An Impromptu Stop-Off.


After an unpredictable weekend away (during the most recent storms, here in the UK) the day of our return seemed much brighter and, a lot easier on the outdoor gear. Rather than to return straight home, we decided instead to make the most of the atmospheric reprieve and make a mid-morning stop-off here, at Lowther Castle, near Penrith. In PT.I, I published a few infrared frames that I was able to bag during a couple of short-lived bursts of less diffused sunshine but sadly, as my preamble would suggest, they just didn’t last. The tail-end of ‘Dennis’ was still licking in the air.

Though I would have loved to have shot a good many more IR pictures here at the beautiful Lowther Castle, I was nonetheless extremely happy to take in the atmosphere here and, with my standard GR in hand – make a generous number of black & whites. Shots I & III were captured at 35mm using the GR’s internal crop mode, while shot II was snagged at its native 28mm. 

Thank you so much for stopping by my pages and, I hope you’ll enjoy these few captures.

– R –

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I | 1/60th – f5.6 – ISO:125

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II | 1/60th – f8.0 – ISO:160

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III | 1/60th – f8.0 – ISO:125

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Thank you for visiting. If you would like updates, please click Follow. All Images & Posts © 35:Chronicle (2018-2020) except where specified. No Copying or Redistribution of any kind is permitted without prior consent from the author, unless links to original work is clearly provided.
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