The only photographs I have taken in 2015 so far were on foreign shores whilst on holiday in the wonderful Cyprus. Back home in Northern Ireland the weather has been cold and unforgiving as of late, but tonight I decided to 'man up' and brace the great outdoors for some landscape photography.
I had been checking the weather all day, the BBC confidently declaring that the rain would keep a respectful distance. To their credit, they weren't wrong! When I arrived at Ballintoy Harbour the sky had perhaps 40-60% cloud cover and the clouds themselves were of all shapes and sizes. As I clambered over the rocks towards my intended perch overlooking the water sunset was still 20 minutes away. The clouds to the north and west were beginning to take on the warm hues of this time of day and the waves were crashing into the rocks below.
There were several rocky outcrops about 20 metres out from the shore and I could see the coast of Scotland in the distance, framed by stormy red clouds. Unfortunately, although this was a beautiful scene, I just couldn't find a balanced and simple composition to do it justice. I plan to return to this spot to try again in future.
After sunset and having not had much luck with the first view I considered photographing, I turned to the east and noticed the moon rising over Rathlin Island and Sheep Island. The colour shot was taken using a Lee Little Stopper filter to give me an exposure length of approximately 1 minute. I wanted the clouds to smear across the sky and such a lengthy exposure has helped achieve this. The Lee Little Stopper produces a cool blue colour cast which requires some pretty drastic colour correction in post-processing, but in this case I liked the result. There is something slightly mysterious about the white moon contrasting with the deep blue colours in the rest of the image.
As an afterthought, I converted one of my other images from the evening into black and white. I must admit that I'm not a huge fan of black and white landscape photography but I feel this image looks nice with the colour removed!