Mountains in the Clouds

January 22, 2014  •  1 Comment

Mountains & Cloud-2Mountains & Cloud-2The Scottish Highlands provide spectacular locations for photography. Even when the weather is poor, the mixture of moist air flow over and around high rocky peaks can make for great landscape and cloudscape images.

I've not long been back from a week taking photographs in the Scottish Highlands, and what a jolly good time it was too. I managed to secure a last minute place on a photographic course run by Garry Brannigan, of River to Ridge. Purely by chance I saw a "Tweet" detailing this last minute place, and by the end of the day I had my place booked on the course. I was one of five photographers with Garry acting as guide and mentor. Staying at a guest house in Ullapool, we started the day with a full Scottish breakfast under our belts before being transported by Landrover to various locations. 

 

It is always useful to gain some insights from experienced others, to explore different ways of looking for and taking images, to effectively see the landscape through the eyes of someone else. It is alway quite amazing I think how one photographer can pick something out of the landscape which somehow remained unseen by others. It takes discipline to stop and take time look around, to take in the landscape as a whole while at the same time looking at the finer details.

Mountains & Cloud-4Mountains & Cloud-4The Scottish Highlands provide spectacular locations for photography. Even when the weather is poor, the mixture of moist air flow over and around high rocky peaks can make for great landscape and cloudscape images.

One thing for certain though, we were lucky with the weather. Predominantly dry days with just a little occasional light rain, varying amounts of cloud and sunshine allowed us out into the the landscape to experience some truly spectacular light and scenery. Mountains & Cloud-1Mountains & Cloud-1The Scottish Highlands provide spectacular locations for photography. Even when the weather is poor, the mixture of moist air flow over and around high rocky peaks can make for great landscape and cloudscape images.

 

What a beautiful place Scotland is. 

 

Birches with white trunks and branches dividing upwards into thin purple twigs line the banks of streams and lochs at lower levels, while the hills and mountains are covered in the colours of winter, some topped with a dusting of snow. More photos of those to come in another post.

 

There should be more snow, it is unseasonable warm. The warm moisture laden air is forced by the prevailing wind through the glens and over the high peaks forming layers of cloud. My eye is drawn towards the summits where immovable rocks rip holes through nebulous clouds. Water vapour condenses on the upslope as the  rising air cools, only to evaporate again as the air swirls and descends on the leeward slopes. The clouds surge forward concealing the mountain tops briefly before once again, the dark rocks break through.

 

Mountains & Cloud-3Mountains & Cloud-3The Scottish Highlands provide spectacular locations for photography. Even when the weather is poor, the mixture of moist air flow over and around high rocky peaks can make for great landscape and cloudscape images.

 

It is a battle that has raged for millennia but one the mountains will eventually lose. The moisture in the clouds falls as rain, sleet, hail, and snow imperceptibly eroding these ancient solid peaks, washing them away  as the water makes its way back down to the sea to begin once more the never ending cycle. These mountains have stood here long before the dawn of man, and will probably remain long after, but eventually the water will win in the end. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The days are short, sunrise around 9am, setting at 4pm. The sun sits close to the horizon at this northerly latitude casting a beautiful light and long shadows across the barren landscape.

 

 

 

There's a lot to fit into the day before returning to the warmth of the guest house for a slap up four course meal, with wine, and a bit of light hearted banter. Food, friendship, and photography, what great way to spend a week.

Mountain & Cloud-6Mountain & Cloud-6The Scottish Highlands provide spectacular locations for photography. Even when the weather is poor, the mixture of moist air flow over and around high rocky peaks can make for great landscape and cloudscape images.

Click any image to go to the gallery.

These photograph from Scotland were taken on a photographic course organised and run by Garry Brannigan of River to Ridge. A link to Garry's website and course details can be found by clicking the orange hyperlink below. 

Garry Brannigan of River to Ridge


Comments

D Ashton(non-registered)
Spectacular photographs. Well done!
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