A different take on Ashness Landing
The jetty at Ashness Landing – on the opposite side of Derwentwater to Hawes End – is one of the most iconic spots in the Lakes. A quick Google Images search rakes in thousands of images of the jetty taken in sublime conditions. We didn’t hold out much hope as we made the drive around the lake, but after we’d up for another greyed-out jetty shot, the warm evening sun surprised us by piercing the clouds… but not for long. “It stopped raining for what seemed like only seconds, then we had this moment of light – hallelujah!” enthuses Jennifer.
“I zoomed the lens out to 14mm to include the whole scene. Shooting handheld, I took the shutter speed down as low as I dared, at 1/80 sec. I could have gone slower still with this wide lens, but I didn’t want any risk of camera shake spoiling a few precious seconds of the sun’s appearance.
“I set the aperture to f/9, as I wanted to capture the shape and details of the treeline on the fells in the distance. Using a relatively small aperture also meant that I was rewarded with a sun star! I would have waited for the sun to sink lower in order to capture the sunset, but the clouds were having their way that day.”
Jennifer’s dark, dense treatment, along with that sunburst, captures how it felt on the spot on the day. But perhaps the foreground detail could have been brought out a touch more in post-production.
With the changing light offering a brief opportunity to capture a more punchy image of Ashness Landing, everyone had to work quickly. Having shot this location before, David was quick to take advantage of the conditions that the previous long spell of dry weather had created and took his Nikon D850 down to the (lower) water. “The low water level gave me my first-ever opportunity to shoot from beneath Ashness Landing’s jetty without getting soaked, and the sunset added dramatic light,” says David. “I wanted to emphasise the end of the jetty and the water there, allowing both the foreground and the far shoreline to fall out of focus: a technique that forces the eye to seek out the sharpest point, which is where I’m wanting you to look.”
“I chose an aperture of f/2.8 for its shallow depth of field, and combined this with a fast shutter speed, as I wanted no movement in the water. I needed to increase the ISO to make the most of the low light. Getting the camera only inches above the lake meant using Live View, too.”
David’s done a terrific job of capturing the moment here, and his shot oozes mood. His choice to combine a low angle, a shallow depth of field and selective focusing really pulls us into the image, and the more unusual view of such a well-documented subject makes this a memorable image.
Challenge 2 Jennifer Berry
Challenge 2 David Goodier