Workshop Report – Malham September 2015

Enjoying the Light Moving over Gordale Scar
Enjoying the Light Moving over Gordale Scar

So, our final visit to Malham and Gordale Scar of 2015 was upon us and we were pleased to see that the weather forecast suggested that we’d be pretty safe in leaving the brollies behind on this occasion.  In fact, a warm and sunny day was predicted, so we were actually quite happy to see that there was some nice cloud cover around on our arrival providing diffused light for our first stop in the woods around Janet’s Foss. Fortunately, this lingered until after our introduction and slideshow over coffee in the comfort of the Lister Arms at Malham, so the light was just perfect for a bit of moving water photography.

Enjoying the Light Moving over Gordale Scar
Looking out of Gordale Scar

After lingering in the woods for quite a while, we tore ourselves away and headed over to Gordale Scar, moving straight up to the top of the valley to admire the waterfalls and brightly coloured rocks, along with the subtle backlighting looking out to the limestone cliffs and grassy slopes behind us.

Enjoying the Light Moving over Gordale Scar
Waiting for the light at Gordale Scar

By this time everyone was getting pretty hungry, so we headed back out down the valley and made best use of the fine weather with a picnic spot on the grass near the beck. Tripods and cameras were set up before lunch, though, in case of light breaking through the clouds! After lunch (and a bit more waiting) this finally arrived and we had a short spell of lovely light falling on the scar (see top

Enjoying the Light Moving over Gordale Scar
Photographing  meadows across Malhamdale

Happy with that result, we braved the climb up the hill to the viewpoint over Gordale Scar and Malhamdale. This once again proved to be spectacular with light moving along the valley below and picking out the shapes in the fields and patterns of dry stone walls rising up the hillside. We were spoilt for choice here with great subjects in all direction and the changing light meant working quickly to make the most of the location.

At the Lone Tree
At the Lone Tree

Eventually we moved over to the lone tree, stopping briefly en route to capture the tree from some distance away with lovely light on the grasses and a dry stone wall in the foreground, with a view to making some panoramic crops at the post-processing session the next day. At the lone tree itself we had slightly thicker cloud as a backdrop making black and white conversions with jagged limestone foregrounds the order of the day.

Photographing at Malham Cove at the End of the Day
Photographing at Malham Cove at the End of the Day

From the tree we strolled down the lane and then across to the top of Malham Cove for the penultimate stop looking over the limestone to the great limestone cliff below and Malhamdale beyond. As if by magic, the sun, now just above the horizon, broke through and lit the rock to perfection. Down at the base of the cove we had a final stop by the beck, where the last rays of the setting sun reflecting off the top of the limestone cliffs above made great reflections in the moving water, and a lovely end to a great day’s landscape photography. We’d been blessed with some great light for the subject matter at every stop along the way, which really showed in the wealth of great images in the post-processing session on Sunday. We’re looking forward to seeing processed results in the flickr group!

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