Gwrych Castle: PTII/II | 35Chronicle Photography

black & white, history, photography, ruins, rural, structures

The Real in Surreal.


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IV | 1/270th – f8.0 – ISO:200 – 85mm – Matrix

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V | 1/750th – f8.0 – ISO:200 – 50mm – Matrix

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VI | 1/500th – f6.0 – ISO:200 – 35mm – Spot

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If you would like updates, please click Follow. All Images & Posts © Rob Lowe | 35Chronicle Photography  (2018-2021) 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. All images are resized prior to posting.

Gwrych Castle, Conwy: PT.I | 35Chronicle Photography

black & white, history, photography, ruins, rural, skies, structures, trees

“The Showpiece of Wales”? No Bl**dy Wonder!


It’s name literally means, “Hedged Castle” and Gwrych was built between 1810 and 1825 by Lloyd Hesketh Bamford-Hesketh in memory of his mother, among other relatives. As we drove along the Expressway just a day after arriving in North Wales, the listed country house was clearly visible from the road and appeared to have been built into the rockface behind it; to say that it is impressive is probably the most ridiculous understatement I could possibly come up with. It is staggering. From first sight of it, it was on our list of sites to visit before heading home at the end of the week and, on our last full day we managed to secure a booking, the first of the day and, we finally headed out to see it. Though I was hoping for better weather and the chance to capture some IR frames (and was denied by the cloud and threatening drizzle) I cannot be unhappy one bit for the experience of having been able to wander through this beautiful, jaw-dropping place, with only a dozen or so other visitors at the time; it’s easy to understand why Gwrych would become so busy not even an hour later and having managed an early timeslot was to prove more than fortunate with the shots that I was able to grab before we finished our tour. But having timeslots, the need for which was obviously enforced by the pandemic – has its downsides, especially when entering the more confined or indoor spaces; visitors who’s slots were only ten or twenty minutes behind us – began to catch up and, the wish to slowly take in the place becomes an exercise in either moving out of people’s way or, worse, rushing along in order to keep our distance. The imposed one way system and countless cordons and other exclusions cut out much of the ground we had hoped to cover during our time here and that made the whole visit even shorter. So, what should have taken a good couple of hours, was over in around forty-five minutes. (There’s plenty I could say about that but common sense doesn’t always prevail and besides most of the site available was outside in the fresh air – this didn’t make much difference to the speed at which visitors were herded in, and ushered out by more following visitors.) I was and, still am a little amazed as to how they managed it given that there’s so much ground here! A calculated exercise in speedier throughput for maximum gain, perhaps. I have to admit to being rather surprised when we reached the exit arch so soon; almost as though we were the subject of a time-lapse recording. An anti-climax? Yup. You bet. But those walls (despite the crane which, in its defence, did lend an air of scale)… oh, it was worth it!

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I | 1/350th – f7.6 – ISO:200 – 70mm – Spot.

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II | 1/125th – f8.0 – ISO:218(!) – 24mm – Spot.

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Despite poor light, I was able to snag some very pleasing frames from Gwrych Castle and no, though the castle was host to the UK show, “I’m a Celebrity…” last year, I won’t be sharing the frame of Ant & Dec’s life-size cardboard cut-outs here. With that said, the castle has a huge amount of history and claims to fame, and I’m sure last years series barely scratched the surface. A simple search from your chosen browser will return much, if places like this are your thing. But for me – I love Gwrych for what it is. Splendid. Mind-bendingly huge. One of a kind. 

Magnificent!

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III | 1/220th – f8.0 – ISO:200 – 24mm – Spot.

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As an aside, this post happens to be my 300th here on 35Chronicle Photography. As such, I’d like to dedicate this one to every single one of you who either read just occasionally, follow, click, comment, contribute in any way and, at any point over the last (almost) four years since I started this blog. If it weren’t for you, there would be no point in any of this. Thank you!

R.


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If you would like updates, please click Follow. All Images & Posts © Rob Lowe | 35Chronicle Photography  (2018-2021) 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. All images are resized prior to posting.

South Stack Lighthouse | Holy Island, Anglesey | 720nm Infrared | 35Chronicle Photography

black & white, infrared, photography, rural, skies, structures, waterscape

Remote Pleasures.


Over my last four or so days off, my feet seemed to have barely touched the ground and as of tomorrow, I’m back to the grindstone for another long run and so, I wanted to just quickly share a couple more frames with you – taken during our summer break. If you have read recent posts, you’ll know that we made a visit to Anglesey, North Wales, and we couldn’t really leave North Wales until we had paid this beautiful island a visit. After a few hours stop at Beaumaris [see post #190 here, if you might be interested] we drove further up to Holy Island to visit the lighthouse at South Stack. Whilst the RSPB visitor centre, cafe and tours were completely closed due to persistent restrictions, I had an absolute blast (in more ways than one) shooting from the top of the cliffs to soak up this utterly breath-taking view.

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I | South Stack Lighthouse, Holy Island | 720nm Infrared | 24mm – f8 – 1/200th – ISO:200

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Even at 51 (sheesh, where does the time go?) I  found out that I was still fit enough (or rather, not completely fooked!) to take a steady run up the hill, in competition with our naturally, far fitter sixteen year-old, who remained only a few feet ahead of me all the way up! I was carrying all my camera gear though; that’s my excuse and I’m sticking to it! (It was a valiant effort though, Corbs!) Once back down to the clifftop (after a little rest, you understand?) I was forced to enlist not only his, but also Bumble’s help in preventing me from getting blown over the cliff edge as, the wind, so strong from behind me as I faced the tower, more than threatened to hurl me over the edge into the rocky ravine below, some 150 metres or so down. Not an end I would have fancied facing. I needed to get as close to the edge as I could only because I was shooting wide and any foreground would have spoilt the drama of the rocks. So, with both of them curling there grip around the belt of my jeans and pulling me back from the edge, I placed my trust and managed to steady myself to grab some frames. You’d look at these and be forgiven that all was serene and calm, but – not a bit of it. It was wild up here. For me, it was well worth it. I do hope you’ll enjoy them too!

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II | North West Coast, Holy Island | 720nm Infrared | 50mm – f5 – 1/400th – ISO:200

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To all of you who visit and follow my ramblings and pictures (those of you who go back years and, new readers alike) I would like to say a huge, massive, gargantuan thank you. I’ve just subscribed to another two years of hosting here at WordPress so, that’s another two years of ad-free reading and (I hope) continued enjoyment. I wish you all a fabulous weekend! 

R.

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HOME A RATIONALE | LIGHT-WAVES | ARCHIVES | LINKS
If you would like updates, please click Follow. All Images & Posts © Rob Lowe | 35Chronicle Photography  (2018-2021) 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. All images are resized prior to posting.