Archive for November, 2009

Towanroath Engine House, and Porth Chapel Beach

A short drive out of St Agnes on the North Coast is Chapel Porth beach.  It is possible to park in the small car park, although I understand that this might get full in the summer.  The Beach itself can be good for surfing (not while I have vsited though), but lookout for tide times as the tide will come right up to the car park.

Photographically, there are cliffs and caves to explore along the beach, but fr me the main attraction of the area is the Towan Roath engine house, at the Wheal Coates mine on the cliffs.

As with most of the spots I have visited in Cornwall, I would like to visit in better weather than I have to date.  I think a wide panorma, including the engine house, the cliff tops and round to the Godrevy lighthouse could work well, but the air would need to be very clear to prevent the cliffs being a foggy mess.  The Beach faces West, so is exposed to the Atantic, but should be better lit in the afternoon than in the morning.

Car Parking is free, both don on the beach, and on the cliff top by Wheal Coates.

More photos of the area can be found here


Panasonic traffic cone

A short postto share this picture taken on my iphone today on the way to work, of a giant (8 foot?) traffic cone. Apparently something to do with Panasonic advertising a new, wide angle compact camera, and the fun you can have with playing with perspective.

There are plenty of fantastic pictures of Porthleven in stormy weather, but on our visit there in October 2009, it a calm overcast day. There is however a nice harbour to explore, and a distinctive church right by the sea wall.

The picture here is looking out towards the sea from the harbour; however it is worth taking a look on Flickr for pictures of church (in the background on my shot) in the middle of a storm.  Portleven is a place I have made a note to visit one day when it is stormy.  The pub opposite the Church, the Ship Inn, has a terrace outside which could be the perfect place to wait around for the perfect conditions.

Porthleven is just a short drive out of Helston.


Porthleven Harbour

Botallack Mine

Botallack Mine

Botallack must be the most spectacularly located of the tin mine engine houses which can be found dotted around Cornwall. The National Trust have a page dedicated to the site, which contains plenty of historical information, and a self guided walk around the site here.

To get to the site take a short walk from the village . of Botallack down to the coast.  The mine in pictured here is to the North of the main complex of ruins around the arsenic works.  Most of the site is West facing, so I imagine it would look great on a late afternoon or sunset.  There is also scope for visiting in stormy weather and trying to incorporate the waves into a scene.

It is also worth popping into the Queens Arms Pub, in the village, they have a great collection of photos, include some of the mine in action.  This is a strange contrast to the abandoned site that is there today. They also have good beer and wifi.  It is possible to camp in the village at this site.

More photos of Botallack can be found here



I have just published to my flickr site a new set: 36 Photos, 1 Film, 1 Day.

The Challenge: 36 photos of Worcester scenes in 1 day, using 1 roll of film.  The idea was to get out of the house and take shots of scenes I live in and around, but perhaps don’t take the tie to stop and look at.

Flickr Set: 36 Photos, 1 Film, 1 Day

I planned the locations in advance, then shot just one frame at each.

I have spent a week developing and scanning, the only planned post production has been the removal of dust and scratches (I had trouble loading the reel for the developing tank, and there was some damage which needed repairing). The only additional digital post processing was minor curves and/or levels adjustments.

All photos were taken on a OM1, with 50mm F1.8 lens. The film was an out of date Neopan 400, although I exposed this at pushed this at ISO 1000 to allow me to leave my tripod at home and handhold.  The pictures are grainier than I am happy with, I think if I try this again I will go for a finer film, that is in date and not push processed. Maybe cut down the volume of pictures to 24 so that I have more time….

By using a fixed focal length lens I had to think hard about composition andwalk around to find the best spot to shoot from. I think at some sites (Powick Electricity) I could have really done with taking my 28mm lens (I got wet feet trying to get a composition) or a longer lens (Southern Bypass, to bring out the Cathedral).

I would be interested in peoples opinion on this set, both as a concept and my actual results. I’d also be keen to hear what scenes people would keep in, add or remove from the set?

To accompany my set of 36, I have also created a gallery showing a similar 36 photos taken from the wider flickr community.  This is split into two galleries:  Gallery 1 and Gallery 2

Thanks for looking

The Elgar Statue, Cathedral Roundabout, Worcester