Photo Road­show Bold and beau­ti­ful

The paths, tem­ples and lakes of Stowe pro­vide plenty of op­por­tu­ni­ties for strik­ing im­agery, says Justin Minns

Amateur Photographer - - 7 Days -

the paths, tem­ples and lakes of Stowe pro­vide op­por­tu­ni­ties for strik­ing im­agery, says Justin Minns

An idyl­lic land­scape filled with tem­ples, the gar­dens at Stowe were cre­ated in the 18th cen­tury on a mas­sive scale by the rich and pow­er­ful Lord Cobham and con­tin­ued by his nephew Earl Tem­ple. More than gar­dens, they hold hid­den mean­ings based on Greek mythol­ogy: the paths and tem­ples re­veal Lord Cobham’s be­liefs on vice, virtue and lib­erty.

This time­less rolling land­scape of wind­ing paths and tran­quil lakes framed by belts of trees and dot­ted with tem­ples and mon­u­ments was worked on by many notable 18th-cen­tury gar­den­ers and ar­chi­tects, in­clud­ing John Van­brugh, James Gibbs, Wil­liam Kent and Ca­pa­bil­ity Brown. Over the years they turned Stowe’s 250 acres of gar­dens into some of the finest views in Eng­land for which pho­tog­ra­phers to­day are eter­nally grate­ful.

Justin’s top tips

1 Go for cuteness over­load and pho­to­graph bounc­ing lambs. Get down low and use a tele­photo lens and a fast shut­ter speed. Try to pre­dict their next move so you can catch them in full flight. 2 For a fresh take on fa­mil­iar views, shoot in black & white. Mono is great for show­ing off the dif­fer­ence in tex­tures in Stowe’s land­scaped gar­dens. Set the cam­era to mono to vi­su­alise the ef­fect in cam­era, but con­vert in post-pro­cess­ing for the best re­sults. 3 Use ei­ther end of a zoom for bold com­po­si­tions of stat­ues and mon­u­ments in the land­scape. Get up close with a wide fo­cal length to ex­ag­ger­ate size, or zoom in tight with a tele­photo lens for just a glimpse of the sub­ject.

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