Tuesday, 3 November 2009

A weekend visit to the Toc-H trail on the chase

Dh stayed behind to clean the bathroom and do some tidying (he actually wanted to listen to the villa game), so I took the boys out on my own, nothing new there (rolleyes)

Anyway, just a couple of shots from there, the boys were pretty uncooperative and it's best to give up than get angry.

Bridge reflections

3 Musketeers

Toc-H trail

My 1st try at a storyboard

I made this up as part of a weekly competition/challenge on a photo site I use. This weeks theme was "my town". For once, I pretty much knew right away what I wanted to photograph and knew that there were too many little things to not include them in the "big picture" Anyway, I found this on ILP and it was easier than I thought, I don't know why I wanted so long, lol!

I am happy with how this turned out, I think the autumnal colours really pull it all together. From the top: Stag fountain outside the council office, 2 of my boys on a path, colliery wheel outside the Chase museum, part of the war cemetery, stag on the Chase.

"My Town" storyboard

Some "studio" work and a conversion of an earlier shot: 17th October 2009

Posted 27th October 2009

A conversion of J. I heart this!

PICT6519 copy

C with sharpening

The next pic was a snap shot I took of Z, but had forgotten to check my settings, so the pic was quite overexposed, but showed his eyes off beautifully, so I tried something different in PP, which is quite different for me, then for comparison, something a little more toned down.

High key attempt

Gorgeous eyes!

I bought myself a shoot through umbrella yesterday in readiness for Z's 1st birthday and decided to practice on him.

I also bought Z his 1st pair of shoes! Here he is showing them off!

This pic made me LOL! Z is breastfed..... I bet he wished this was real!

Weekends on the Chase with the boys: 27th Oct 2009

Posted 27th October 2009

Boys will be boys.

Not forgetting Z!

Run or hide from the Daddy monster?

I see you!

J at Birches Valley

Smiley C

Mean & moody!

Nature shots: 27th Oct 2009

Posted 27th October 2009

Possibly my favourite recent picture of scenery. There is just something about autumnal paths that is hard to resist getting a snap of.

Autumnal path


Autumn colours

On the forest floor

Chase autumn sunset

A series of Stag photo's: Oct 2009

Posted October 2009

These were all taken within about 10 minutes of each other. I left the boys in a nice safe place, behind a fence, just in case the stags too offence to us being there. Then I tailed a stag and was very fortunate that he was very patient with me and allowed me to creep pretty close to him. I actually just stood there and stared at him for a while as they are so beautiful close up and I was pretty much in awe. I took a series of shots, all the while making sure he was still ok with my presence. Then suddenly he started bellowing and grunting. Oh my gosh, I was so close it scared me half to death and I nearly dropped my camera, lol! Thankfully it wasn't me he was objecting to, but a young buck that had arrived in his stand. I managed to capture som quick (so slightly soft) images of the stag running off down the hill to check out the brave soul. I was about to sneak off to leave them in peace when I heard a shuffle and a new stag was boldly stood where the other stag had vaccated. The whole thing was just amazing!

when I recovered enough to capture him grunting!

Recent wildlife: October 2009

Posted October 2009

Living so close to an area of outstanding natural beauty (AONB), I am fortunate to get over to the forest several times a week. This past 2 weeks has been the fallow deer's main rutting time, so have been so lucky to see stags fairly close up and hear their bellows all over the Chase, carried on the wind. I really was quite an amazing experience. I wasn't fortunate enough to see 2 stags lock antlers, but I did manage to get up close to a couple of fairly calm & majestic beasts, beautiful beasts mind you! I also tried my hand at a bit of briding, but to be fair, my 70-210 lens is not fast enough unless I am shooting in brilliant sunshine.

Great tit

Great tit 2.

Blue tit


Deer, fox & the odd squirrel!:

I literally stumbled across a rather sorry looking stag, poor fellow had 1 antler, was missing an eye and had a very obvious limp. I think the rut has been hard on him :( My eldest boy decided he wanted to name him, so introducing Monty, the 1 antlered, I eyed wonder!

Been in the wars?

The one antlered wonder

Young stag in the quarry


The stag, the hind & the squirrel (looks closely on the tree closest to the stag!)
The stag, the hind & the squirrel

Fantastic Mr Fox

My older 2 boys on a gorgeous autumn day: Oct 2009

Posted October 2009

They were busy climbing some great old tree's, but I couldn't resist a few pics and took the opportunity to practice with my OCF again.

C is a tiny bit soft in this, shame as it's a lovely pic of him. It was hard to hold the camera steady while balance precariously on a branch opposite him. I was worried about falling off with my camera!

C in a tree

The amazing, non smiling JJ (roll eyes)

JJ tree climbing

My current fave of J

And just a snap I took, but really loved (yep, darn mama goggles are stuck firmly on, lol!) I really should crop this slightly, but like the lens flare and LOVE the way the sun caught his eyelashes.

Like mother, like son!

Autumn has arrived: Oct 2009

Posted October 2009

Yesterday I spent most of the day on the Chase with the boys. It was one of those gloriously sunny & mild autumn days, they kind you really have to make the most of because you don't get many in the UK. Yesterday I took a mix of pics, some of the older boys, some of deer and the views and nature surrounding us. There really was some spectacular light yesterday, I just hope I am getting better at seeing it. I will post the boys pics in a new thread otherwise this thread will get long...FAST

Mother feeding fawn

Tender moment between mother & fawn

Stag in the heather

Close up of stag in the heather

2 stags in the heather!

We fell really lucky with the following group of deer. The baby was asleep and we were walking down a path we had never been down before when we came across an older couple, both wearing camo jackets and the man had a bag of nuts. He asked the bopys if they has seen any deer and we told him we hadn't seen many and he told us he would call them for us. He told us to stand behind a fallen log, from where you could look out onto a flat grassy patch. I could not believe it when the man walked onto the grassy patch, was scattering the nuts on the grass while calling "come on then, come and get it"! He told me he had been feeding the deer for years and they knew who he was. Within 2 minutes the deer all started coming out of the clearing. They were a bit nervous given that the didn't recognise me or the boys and my camera's shutter makes a noise, but eventually a few couldn't resist the temptation so put up with us taking photos. It was an amazing experience. I totally cheated and put the camera in auto so I wasn't having to mess with the controls, lol!

Young buck


Mother & daughter



Gorgeous autumn light on the Chase

Almost sunset