Stephen Studd Photography

Travel Gardens Plants


Leave a comment

RHS Tatton Park Flower Show 2014 – show gardens

I arrived at Tatton Park for a three day photo shoot, on the Monday, which is the last day of build up, to take a look at the gardens before my 5.30am access over the next 3 days. The weather forecast was for lots of sun, leaving a narrow window for pro garden photographers to shoot, as between about 8am and 6pm the bright sunlight is far too harsh.

There were a few gardens that caught my eye on my first walk around the showground, particularly the ‘See the Wind’ garden designed by Joan Mulvenna and Andrew Lee with it’s purple pink hues of the Hordeum Jubatum (ornamental barley) against the Salvia Nemorosa ‘Amethyst’.

Tatton Park 2014 Cheshire RHS flower show 'See the Wind' garden designed by Joan Mulvenna and Andrew Lee with it's purple pink hues of the Hordeum Jubatum (ornamental barley) against the Salvia Nemorosa 'Amethyst'.

‘See the Wind’ garden designed by Joan Mulvenna and Andrew Lee:  Hordeum Jubatum (ornamental barley) against the Salvia Nemorosa ‘Amethyst’.

The garden sculpture fluttering and twinkling in the breeze, with the movement of the barley, salvia, bamboo and alliums had me captivated for some time, there was a very Zen like feel to the garden, with its simplistic and also complex kinetic design.

Tatton Park 2014 Cheshire RHS flower show 'See the Wind' garden designed by Joan Mulvenna and Andrew Lee with it's purple pink hues of the Hordeum Jubatum (ornamental barley) against the Salvia Nemorosa 'Amethyst'.

‘See the Wind’ garden designed by Joan Mulvenna and Andrew Lee

The garden deservedly won a Gold and Best in Show in the Elements garden category.

Tatton Park 2014 Cheshire RHS flower show 'See the Wind' garden designed by Joan Mulvenna and Andrew Lee with it's purple pink hues of the Hordeum Jubatum (ornamental barley) against the Salvia Nemorosa 'Amethyst'.

Allium spaerocephalon in the ‘See the Wind’garden.

Bathed in late evening golden light was the Gold medal winning Reaseheath College ‘A Taste of Wythenshaw’ garden with the towers of beans growing on steel reinforcing rods, which reminded me of the Gardens by the Bay in Singapore.

Tatton Park 2014 Cheshire RHS flower show Reaseheath college A taste of Wythenshawe garden

Towers of beans in the Reaseheath college ‘A taste of Wythenshawe’ garden

The garden made maximum use of space with beds growing fruit, veg and herbs and a living food wall and columns.

Tatton Park 2014 Cheshire RHS flower show Reaseheath college A taste of Wythenshawe garden

Reaseheath college ‘A taste of Wythenshawe’ garden

Another garden that utilised the space for fruit and veg growing with north to south running raised beds was Silver medal winning ‘The Forgotten Corner’ designed by Carl Gerrard in the Summer gardens category.

Tatton Park 2014 Cheshire RHS flower show The Forgotten Corner designed by Carl Gerrard

‘The Forgotten Corner’ designed by Carl Gerrard

It seemed touch and go whether the ‘Elemental’ garden designed by Ian Price would be finished in time for judging and it was a garden that the photographers were eager to photograph. The garden was well placed for very late evening sunset light which showed off the charred wood cladding wall perfectly.

Tatton Park 2014 Cheshire RHS flower show Elemental garden designed by Ian Price.

‘Elemental’ garden designed by Ian Price.

The garden had a contemporary feel whilst also making use of reused and modern materials. It was Ian’s first show garden gaining him a Gold medal.

Tatton Park 2014 Cheshire RHS flower show Elemental garden designed by Ian Price.

‘Elemental’ garden designed by Ian Price.

A favourite designer of mine is Pip Probert and her Gold medal garden ‘The Narrows’ displayed a typical long narrow suburban garden packed full of design ideas with different zones.

Tatton Park 2014 Cheshire RHS flower show Pip Probert 'The Narrows' garden

Pip Probert ‘The Narrows’ garden

I particularly liked the bullrushes reflected in the still water of the pond.

Tatton Park 2014 Cheshire RHS flower show Pip Probert 'The Narrows' garden

Pip Probert ‘The Narrows’ garden

There were red hot plants scattered amongst the vibrant planting in the garden, leading the eye to the red chairs in the outdoor living space at the end of the garden.

Tatton Park 2014 Cheshire RHS flower show Pip Probert 'The Narrows' garden

‘The Narrows’ garden designed by Pip Probert, outdoor living area.

In the Show Gardens category, Best in Show and Gold medal went to ‘Maggie’s Forest Garden’ designed by Amanda Waring and Laura Arison first time show garden designers . The swings by Sitting Spiritually had carved on them ‘A Haven of Peace’ and ‘Warm and Inviting’ which summed up the forest garden inspired design as a space to connect with nature whilst creating a sense of wellbeing.

RHS tatton Park flower show 2014 Maggie's Forest Garden designed by Amanda Waring and Laura Anson

Maggie’s Forest Garden designed by Amanda Waring and Laura Arison

The garden certainly had a calming effect when looking at it, with the gentle flow of water through the rill falling gently in to the pond below.

RHS tatton Park flower show 2014 Maggie's Forest Garden designed by Amanda Waring and Laura Anson

Maggie’s Forest Garden designed by Amanda Waring and Laura Arison

In the Summer Garden category Best in Show went to another first time show garden designer Caroline Lord with her ‘Industrial Transitions’ garden, which used mainly reclaimed materials and was inspired by Manchester’s industrial heritage.

Tatton Park 2014 Cheshire RHS flower show Caroline Lord garden Industrial Transitions

Caroline Lord garden Industrial Transitions

The reused diesel tank made into a water feature with Rudbeckia hirta set against it.

Tatton Park 2014 Cheshire RHS flower show Caroline Lord garden Industrial Transitions

Caroline Lord garden Industrial Transitions

The British Association of Landscape Industries (BALI) garden ‘Vogue’ designed by Belinda Belt won a Silver Gilt medal. The design was sleek and contemporary with a huge 100mm thick laser cut stone wall feature which weighed over a ton.

Tatton Park 2014 Cheshire RHS flower show Belinda Belt 'Vogue' garden

‘Vogue’ garden designed by Belinda Belt

I did feel for the Dutch team Clusius College who had a disaster with a water tank breakage on the day of judging in their ‘Digital Green’ garden which only made bronze medal.

'Digital Green' by Clusius College students at RHS Tatton Park flower show 2014

‘Digital Green’ by Clusius College students

They had a very innovative use for reused old computer keyboard parts in their garden.

'Digital Green' by Clusius College students at RHS Tatton Park flower show 2014

‘Digital Green’ by Clusius College students at RHS Tatton Park flower show 2014

I had a déjà vu feeling when I saw The Water Garden designed by Harry Levy which won a Silver medal, because of the yellow summerhouse that featured in last years design.

RHS Tatton park flower show 2014 The Water Garden designed by Harry Levy.

RHS Tatton park flower show 2014 The Water Garden designed by Harry Levy.

This years Tatton Park show can be described as extremely hot.

RHS Tatton park flower show 2014 Element Garden designed by Michael Vinsun

‘Element’ Garden designed by Michael Vinsun

At this years Tatton Park flower show it was good to see so many new show garden designers getting their first Gold medals and Best in Show awards. Tatton Park is now the showcase for the Young Designer of the Year award, which I have covered in a separate blog entry.

Thanks to everyone who makes Tatton Park show the jewel in the North West’s horticultural calendar, I look forward to returning next year.


For photography commissions my website is www.stephenstuddphotography.com

I also run small group travel photography holidays and flower photography workshops www.digitalphotographyholidays.com

I am represented by GAP Photos for my garden photography: http://www.gapphotos.com/imageresults.asp?photogref=139

Social Media:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Stephen-Studd-Photography/387939741345414

Twitter www.twitter.com/StephensPhotos

Google+ https://plus.google.com/+Stephenstuddphotography


 

 


Leave a comment

RHS Young Designer of the Year 2014 – show gardens at Tatton Park

This years theme for the RHS young designers was ‘Avant Gardening’ where the contenders were encouraged to have a daring touch of invention showing new techniques with experimentation. The three contenders that were chosen to design their first show garden at Tatton Park were, Sam Ovens, Clare Broadbent and Alex Schofield under the mentorship of Paul Hervey-Brookes an international multi award winning garden designer.

The winning garden was ‘The Sky’s the Limit’ designed by Sam Ovens who said of his garden “I wanted to show that sometimes the simplest things are the best things,” his garden also picked up a Gold medal.

RHS Young Garden Designer of the Year award winner Sam Ovens - The Sky's the Limit garden at Tatton Park Cheshire RHS flower show 2014

2014 RHS Young Garden Designer of the Year award winner Sam Ovens – The Sky’s the Limit garden at Tatton Park flower show

This was the first garden myself and a colleague started photographing after having a look around the show gardens on the build up on Monday. It had an air of relaxation and calmness and the backlit Stipa Gigantea were very eye catching in the evening light at 7pm. The area the young designers are given at Tatton is perfectly placed for sunrise and evening light, a photographers dream.

RHS Young Garden Designer of the Year award winner Sam Ovens - The Sky's the Limit garden at Tatton Park Cheshire RHS flower show 2014

RHS Young Garden Designer of the Year award winner Sam Ovens – The Sky’s the Limit garden at Tatton Park RHS flower show 2014

Returning the next day at 5.30am I headed straight back to Sam’s garden as I wanted to see the garden with rusted fencing bathed in the early morning glow of warm sunrise light.

RHS Young Garden Designer of the Year award winner Sam Ovens - The Sky's the Limit garden at Tatton Park Cheshire RHS flower show 2014

Sam Ovens – The Sky’s the Limit garden bathed in sunrise light.

His garden had small concrete stepping stones leading to the decking and the seating area.

RHS Young Garden Designer of the Year award winner Sam Ovens - The Sky's the Limit garden at Tatton Park Cheshire RHS flower show 2014

Concrete stepping stones in Sam Ovens garden at Tatton Park.

The rest of the garden was densely planted with many varieties of grasses and ferns, with plants such as Cirsium rivulare ‘Atropurpureum’, Verbena bonariensis and Agastache ‘Blackadder’ scattered amongst them.

RHS Young Garden Designer of the Year award winner Sam Ovens - The Sky's the Limit garden at Tatton Park Cheshire RHS flower show 2014

Dense planting in Sam Ovens garden.

Sam has a very bright future ahead of him after winning the coveted award of young designer of the year 2014.

 

Another Gold Medal garden and finalist was WorkOUT designed by Clare Broadbent (Horticon Design), which had an outdoor gym theme.

Tatton Park 2014 Cheshire RHS flower show WorkOUT garden designed by Clare Broadbent one of the Young Designer of the Year Awards - Gold medal

WorkOUT garden designed by Clare Broadbent- Gold medal winner

This wasn’t a garden that I warmed to, maybe because I joined a gym once and didn’t really like the machines, I find gardening in my organic garden and allotment, carrying around heavy photographic gear workout enough. The design had lots of strong ideas such as the rowing machine that had Archimedes’ screws which aerates the pond whilst also creating a workout and the exercise bike turned a water wheel in the pond. I liked the pommel horse bench idea.

Archimedes’ screws that offer workout opportunities and also aerates the pond

Archimedes’ screws that offer workout opportunities and also aerates the pond

One of the gardens that lots of the photographers immersed themselves in was Prehistoric Modernism by Alex Schofield which was awarded a Silver Gilt. The garden was designed for sun worshippers and had coloured Perspex panels in burnt frames to highlight the concept of heat.

Tatton Park 2014 Cheshire RHS flower show Prehistoric Modernism garden designed by Alex Schofield one of the Young Designer of the Year Awards - Silver Gilt

Tatton Park 2014 Cheshire RHS flower show Prehistoric Modernism garden designed by Alex Schofield one of the Young Designer of the Year Awards – Silver Gilt

The panels created their own micro climates and optical lighting effects around the garden. I liked the Echinacea ‘White Spider’ that were scattered around the garden, especially the ones placed by the coloured panels.

Tatton Park 2014 Cheshire RHS flower show Prehistoric Modernism garden designed by Alex Schofield one of the Young Designer of the Year Awards - Silver Gilt

Tatton Park 2014 Cheshire RHS flower show Prehistoric Modernism garden designed by Alex Schofield one of the Young Designer of the Year Awards – Silver Gilt

As a garden photographer it was tough to get an overall shot of the garden without it having a show garden setting as the design was open plan with no walls as a backdrop to hide any of the tents or fencing.

Tatton Park 2014 Cheshire RHS flower show Prehistoric Modernism garden designed by Alex Schofield one of the Young Designer of the Year Awards - Silver Gilt

Alex’s garden with two tiered lounge decking seating area and Feuerring fire.

Despite this Alex’s garden had lots of very strong visual angles to look at and photograph, I will be following his career.

Tatton Park 2014 Cheshire RHS flower show Prehistoric Modernism garden designed by Alex Schofield one of the Young Designer of the Year Awards - Silver Gilt

Prehistoric Modernism garden designed by Alex Schofield

Tatton Park is a showcase for the young designers and I wish them all the best in their garden design careers, with a special congratulations to the overall winner Sam Ovens. I look forward to following all their careers in the future and I look forward to next years competition.


For photography commissions my website is www.stephenstuddphotography.com

I also run small group travel photography holidays and flower photography workshops www.digitalphotographyholidays.com

I am represented by GAP Photos for my garden photography: http://www.gapphotos.com/imageresults.asp?photogref=139

Social Media:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Stephen-Studd-Photography/387939741345414

Twitter www.twitter.com/StephensPhotos

Google+ https://plus.google.com/+Stephenstuddphotography


 


Leave a comment

Hampton Court Flower Show 2014: Garden Photographers View of the Show Gardens

 

Hampton Court Flower show 2014 RHS London

Setting off from home at 3.30am to get to Hampton Court for my 5.30am access with a good weather forecast made the journey easy, I was at Hampton for a 2 day photoshoot. When I arrived, the sun had risen and most importantly it was very still, with no wind.

Making my way to the gardens, the first one to stand out was ” A Space to Connect and Grow“, designed by Jeni Cairns, which was the ultimate recycled materials garden and packed full of edible and medicinal plants and pollinating flowers.

Hampton Court Flower Show 2014, Stephen Studd photography- Garden - Space to Connect and Grow - view of garden - Designer - Jeni Cairns in collaboration with Sophie Antonelli - Sponsor - Metal - Earls Scaffolding & British Sugar

Hampton Court Flower Show 2014, Garden, Space to Connect and Grow – Designer – Jeni Cairns in collaboration with Sophie Antonelli, awarded Gold medal & Best Summer garden

On my own organic allotment and in my garden I like to use recycled materials and here there were so many design ideas as the whole garden was made from recycled, reused and upcycled materials. The funky water feature fed water from the roof of the outbuilding, which had a living roof and used old combine harvester parts, now that is what I call upcycling.

Hampton Court Flower Show 2014, Garden, Space to Connect and Grow - Designer - Jeni Cairns in collaboration with Sophie Antonelli, awarded Gold medal & Best Summer garden

How many uses are there for an old oil drum, plenty it seems in this garden.

Hampton Court Flower Show 2014, Garden, Space to Connect and Grow - Designer - Jeni Cairns in collaboration with Sophie Antonelli, awarded Gold medal & Best Summer garden

Seating from old oil containers.

 

Stephen Studd - Garden - Space to Connect and Grow - view of garden - Designer - Jeni Cairns in collaboration with Sophie Antonelli  - Sponsor - Metal - Earls Scaffolding & British Sugar

Planters for vertical growing herbs, fruit and veg.

 

Stephen Studd -

Bee and insect hotels and decorative wall made from old oil drums.

Another garden that made full use of recycled materials with a low environmental impact was the garden designed by Alexandra Froggatt ” A Garden of Solitude” in the Your Garden Your Budget category. The garden had a very relaxed and soft feel to it and was made with a budget of £15,ooo. The seating was made from reclaimed oak, and the garden used reclaimed concrete and gravel boards and a recycled glass wall with lighting behind it for use in the evening.

Stephen Studd -

A Garden of Solitude – Designer: Alexandra Froggatt, Silver Gilt awarded & Best Your Garden Your Budget garden.

The garden was full of nectar rich plants and the design was based on the shape, colour and translucency of crystals, with a water feature and waterfall incorporated into the design. There was also a living wall planted with Carex “Frosted Curls”. For me this was certainly the most relaxing of the gardens and was proof that recycled can also be very stylish.

Stephen Studd -

A Garden of Solitude – Designer – Alexandra Froggatt – Sponsor – The RHS

A garden that was all about community was The Flintknapper’s Garden – A Story of Thetford designed by Luke Heydon, it had some great design ideas, I liked the mulch made from old pine cones.

Stephen Studd - Garden - The Flintknapper's Garden - A Story of Thetford - view of garden - Designer - Luke Heydon - Sponsor - Thetford businesses & residents

mulch from pine cones

 

The Jordans Wildlife garden had very naturalistic planting, lots of edibles, medicinals and plants for insects, bees and birds. I really liked the thatched straw seating in the middle of the garden and the insect hotels and bird boxes on the edges of the garden.

RHS Hampton Court flower show, Stephen Studd photography  - Garden - Jordans Wildlife Garden - view of garden - Designer - Selina Botham - Sponsor - Jordans Cereals

Jordans Wildlife Garden Selina Botham awarded Silver Medal

Hedgehog Street designed by Tracy Foster showed how three neighbouring gardens whose owners all love hedgehogs, had incorporated hedgehog routes through their neighbouring boundaries. In the photo below you can see the hedgehog tunnel at the base of the wall, showing that contemporary garden design can also be wildlife friendly.

RHS Hampton Court flower show 2014 Stephen Studd photography -

Hedgehog Street – Designer – Tracy Foster

It was another favourite of mine as the wilder garden of the neighbours reminded me of my own wildlife friendly permaculture garden.

RHS Hampton Court flower show 2014 Stephen Studd photography -

The Conceptual gardens based on the 7 deadly sins, had some very thought provoking gardens and ones that I really enjoyed photographing.

I first came across a garden designed by Sheena Seeks when I was photographing at Tatton Park a few years ago. When I saw the garden below it popped into my head that it was one of her designs, which it was. “Sloth – Quarry of Silences” won Best in the Conceptual Gardens category and a Gold medal.

RHS Hampton Court Flower Show 2014 Stephen Studd photography - Garden - Sloth - Quarry of Silences - view of garden - Designer - Sheena Seeks

Sloth – Quarry of Silences – Designer – Sheena Seeks

 

The Wrath – “Eruption of Unhealed Anger” garden  designed by Nilufer Danis was full of drama and atmosphere and gained a Gold medal and was a photographers dream with the backlit volcanic smoke and Kniphofia (red hot poker plants)

RHS Hampton Court flower show 2014 Stephen Studd photography -

Wrath – Eruption of Unhealed Anger – view of garden – Designer – Nilufer Danis

“Lust” designed by  Rachel Parker Soden really attracted the crowds and press. The interior of the greenhouse was steamy, hot and planted with lots of provocative Anthurium, Orchids and Brugmansia as well as the Gloriosa plant which is used by many cultures in traditional medicine and has many uses, including the treatment of sexually transmitted diseases, impotence and infertility. (Note: ingestion of the Gloriosa plant is extremely poisonous and can cause fatalities in humans and animals).

RHS Hampton Court Flower Show 2014 Stephen Studd photographyGarden - Lust - view of garden - Designer - Rachel Parker Soden - Sponsor - The RHS

Lust by Rachel Parker Soden

“Pride” by Amanda Miller

RHS Hampton Court flower show 2014 Stephen Studd photography - Garden - Pride - The Stonewall Garden Breaking Down the Walls of Pride - view of garden - Designer - Amanda Miller - Sponsor - The RHS

Pride – The Stonewall Garden, Breaking Down the Walls of Pride – Designer – Amanda Miller

“Envy, The Grass is always Greener” garden designed by Marcus Green had a real presence to it.

Envy - The Grass Is Always Greener -  Designer - Marcus Green

Envy – The Grass Is Always Greener – Designer – Marcus Green

Having spent some time in Australia on travel photography commissions I was keen to see the Essence of Australia garden designed by Jim Fogarty, which had an Australian outdoor living feel.

RHS Hampton Court flower show 2014 Stephen Studd photography - Garden - Essence of Australia - view of garden - Designer - Jim Fogarty for Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne - Sponsor - Tourism Victoria - Tourism Northern Territory - Qantas - Trailfinders

Essence of Australia – Designer – Jim Fogarty for Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne, Best in Show gardens & Gold medal.

The garden took its inspiration from the Rainbow Serpent which is an important Dreaming figure  in Aboriginal culture.  The Rainbow Serpent deck winds its way through the garden and through diverse natural attractions and landscapes of Australia, and an amazing array of Australian plants including Brachyscome Blue and Eremophila glabra in the photograph below.

RHS HAmpton Court flower show 2014 - Stephen Studd photography - Garden - Essence of Australia - view of garden - Designer - Jim Fogarty for Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne - Sponsor - Tourism Victoria - Tourism Northern Territory - Qantas - Trailfinders

Essence of Australia – Designer – Jim Fogarty for Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne

For grand outdoor living there was the garden designed by Paul Martin, which had a gravity defying dining table.

Stephen Studd - Garden - Vestra Wealth's Vista - view of garden - Designer - Paul Martin Designs - Sponsor - Vestra Wealth

Vestra Wealth’s Vista – – Designer – Paul Martin

Another outdoor living space was Al Fresco designed by Peter Reader with a beautifully built green oak frame pergola.

RHS Hampton court flower show Stephen Studd photography - Garden - Al Fresco - view of garden - Designer -  Peter Reader - Sponsor - Living Landscapes

Al Fresco – – Designer – Peter Reader

Finally it was great to see lots of insect and bee hotels in the gardens, here is one in the log wall of the Green is the Colour garden designed by Elinor Scarth & Etienne Haller.

Stephen Studd - Garden - Green is the Colour - view of log wall and insect bug houses hotel - Designer - Elinor Scarth & Etienne Haller - Sponsor - The RHS

Green is the Colour – Designer – Elinor Scarth & Etienne Haller

And this one in the Jordans Cereals garden.

Stephen Studd - Garden - Jordans Wildlife Garden - view of garden - Designer - Selina Botham - Sponsor - Jordans Cereals

Insect and bee hotel complete with bird box.

It was good to see lots of gardens at Hampton Court that had sustainability at the core of their designs with lots of nectar rich plants and planting for wildlife, with both edible and medicinal plants in the gardens, insect/bee houses and gardens made with recycled/upcycled materials. I look forward to heading back next year. Next stop is Tatton Park show, keep an eye out for my blog, or you can also subscribe too. Have a great summer of gardening.


For photography commissions my website is www.stephenstuddphotography.com

I also run small group travel photography holidays and flower photography workshops www.digitalphotographyholidays.com

I am represented by GAP Photos for my garden photography: http://www.gapphotos.com/imageresults.asp?photogref=139

Social Media:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Stephen-Studd-Photography/387939741345414

Twitter www.twitter.com/StephensPhotos

Google+ https://plus.google.com/+Stephenstuddphotography


 


4 Comments

IGPOTY awards 2014 “behind the photos”

The International Garden Photographer of the Year awards have just been announced.

‘Sarracenia Flava’: Finalist, Macro Art

Sarracenia Flava all green form pitcher plant IGPOTY monochrome photography by Stephen Studd

For the shot I wanted to give the plant an air of mystery and a fine art feel. I decided to minimise the depth of field and only focus on the nearest part of the plant to the lens. By doing this it would knock all the rest of the plant out of focus. The lighting was chosen to only have the highlight at the nearest point to the lens leaving the rest of the photo to fade into shadow, which gives the air of mystery.

Finally I converted the image to black and white and then split toned the colour in Lightroom.

The photograph was shot with a 180mm Canon macro lens, at f8 with 0.5sec shutter speed at 100 ISO.

‘Watering my allotment’: Commended, Plants & Water, photographed on my allotment Old Bisley Road, Stroud.

“Watering My Allotment” commended in the International Garden Photographer of the Year competition photograph by Stephen Studd IGPOTY

The photograph  was first taken to illustrate a review I did for the Manfrotto Pixi tripod

I had pre-visualised the shot using the mini tripod as I thought it would be able to get to places I couldn`t, in amongst my bean, pumpkin and sweetcorn bed on the allotment. The summer of 2013 in the UK had been a particularly long and dry one and watering became a routine part of visits to the allotment in order to keep my plants alive.

I was after a shot that would convey the feeling of warmth, heat and watering. I chose an evening when the sun was low in the sky, placed the tripod amongst the veg and shot the photo into the sun for a more contemporary feel to the image.

With a cable release I tried a couple of test shots to get the exposure spot on (this can be tricky when shooting straight into the sun.) Then I watered the veg with my watering can, the result I was really pleased with, not only had the Pixi tripod held my very weighty Canon 1Ds Mark II but the streaks of bright backlit water added a beautiful pattern to the resulting image. The only problem I encountered was keeping the water off the camera, which was ironic after such a long hot dry summer.

Woman at the Market, Mandalay, Myanmar (Burma): Highly Commended, Bountiful Earth

Digital photography holidays holiday vacations tour tours workshop workshops to Myanmar Burma Cambodia Angkor Wat Venice marrakech Paris Morocco Prague hosted by Stephen Studd 2014

This image is one of my crossover images, in that I am a travel & garden photographer. I was away on a travel shoot in Burma, whilst also looking for great locations for the photography holidays I run there. Markets are always a great place to visit in any country, especially for travel photography. I had in my mind some of the different categories for IGPOTY and Bountiful Earth was an obvious one at this market in Mandalay. The woman with the bamboo hat, the colours of the scene and the big bags of shallots drew my attention. The market in Mandalay was full of fresh produce and a photographers dream, a place I visited over several days.

Canon EOS 1DS Mark II 70mm f6.3 1/160th sec, 100 ISO

I am a professional garden & travel photographer, my website is www.stephenstuddphotography.com

I also run photography holidays & workshops www.digitalphotographyholidays.com

Twitter; https://twitter.com/StephensPhotos

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/DigitalPhotographyHolidays


4 Comments

International Photography Awards 2013, Burma, Angkor Wat & Iris

The International Photography Awards 2013 have just been announced and I received an Honourable mention in 8 categories, which I am really pleased with as there were over 15,000 entries from around the world.

Some of you might have seen my Myanmar (Burma) photographs when they first appeared on the Manfrotto website.

Travel and Tourism category and Fine Art; Landscapes category “Temples of Bagan”

Having first visited Bagan eight years ago, on my return visit in April of this year I had already pre-visualised a series of black and white images of the temples. There are over 4,000 temples on the plains of Bagan and the whole area has an ethereal, timeless feeling and is one of my favourite places on the planet. For the series I converted my images to black & white, then split toned them in Lightroom. It was important to have the same tone in the series as I wanted them to work together. These 3 photographs were the ones I entered.

Myanmar Burma Bagan temples sunrise black and white

Myanmar (Burma) “Temples of Bagan”

Myanmar Burma Bagan temples sunrise black & white

Myanmar (Burma) Temples of Bagan

Myanmar Burma Bagan temples sunrise black and white

Myanmar (Burma) “Temples of Bagan”

Panoramic category “Temples of Bagan”

For this image I wanted to show a panoramic view from one of my favourite temples, from which you get an idea of what the stupa studded landscape looks like.

Myanmar (Burma) Bagan temples panoramic view

Myanmar (Burma) “Temples of Bagan” Panoramic

Culture Category “Stonemasons Burma”

In Mandalay there is an area of the city where images of Buddha are carved from rock. I spent a morning in this area photographing the many processes that are undergone to make the statues. The air was filled with rock dust and it was quite oppressive in the searing heat of April in Mandalay. The boy to the left has to stand there applying water to where the man is drilling. This photograph was just one from a whole series shot that morning.

Mandalay stonemasons quarter boy and young man carving Buddha statue Burma Myanmar

Stonemasons Burma

Fisherman Inle Lake

Lake Inle in the Shan State of Myanmar covers an area of 45 square miles (116 km2) and is at an altitude of 2900 feet, it is home to the leg rowing fisherman. It was my first visit to the lake and it came as a welcome relief to the heat of Mandalay in April as the air was much cooler. I was really taken by the beauty of the place and chartered a boat to take me out for a few days. On my first dawn outing the boat captain drove past this fisherman who was completely oblivious to us. The sun had just appeared over the hills which made for a great silhouette and some warmth after a chilly start. I often see photographs of the Inle Lake fisherman which are over posed, I liked the natural feeling to this shot.

Myanmar Burma Lake Inle sunrise leg rower rowing fisherman

“Lake Inle fisherman”

Travel & Tourism Category; People of Burma

Myanmar Mandalay U Bein bridge woman watching sunrise

Mandalay U Bein Bridge

Mandalay stonemasons quarter boy and young man carving Buddha statue Burma Myanmar

Mandalay Stonemasons

Burma (Mandalay) Schwezigon Paya pagoda monks

Young Monks Nyaung Shwe

Inle lake, Myanmar (Burma) fisherman with girl on boat

Inle lake, Myanmar (Burma)

Portrait of an old Shan man in Myanmar (Burma) Lake Inle

Trees Category; “Tree Roots; Ta Prohm Temple, Cambodia”

This shot is one from an ongoing project photographing nature`s strength over humankind at the temples of Angkor Wat. The trees roots of this tree are slowly pulling the temple apart returning the stone back to the Earth and creating a new form of beauty.

Asia, Cambodia, Siem Reap, Angkor wat, Ta Prohm temple.

Tree Roots; Ta Prohm Temple, Cambodia

Flowers category; Iris

This image of the Iris was taken with my 180mm macro lens which is my favourite lens for close up photography. The Iris was slightly back lit from the sun which showed off its translucent petals.

Iris

Iris

I am looking forward to returning to Cambodia and Burma this winter as I host travel photography holidays to my favourite locations www.digitalphotographyholidays.com

You can sign up for my free newsletter on the website and be the first to hear of new locations and dates: www.digitalphotographyholidays.com/newsletter

My Travel, Gardens, Plants, Photography Website is www.stephenstuddphotography.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/DigitalPhotographyHolidays and I can be found tweeting from www.twitter.com/StephenPhotos

Thanks for popping by my blog and “may the light be with you”


Leave a comment

Finalist; IGPOTY Macro Art; behind the photo “Sarracenia Flava”

Sarracenia Flava all green form pitcher plant

Sarracenia Flava all green form pitcher plant

This image of the carnivorous plant Sarracenia Flava var Maxima, all green form pitcher plant was a finalist in the International Garden photographer of the Year, monochrome art category.

For the shot I wanted to give the plant an air of mystery and a fine art feel. I decided to minimise the depth of field and only focus on the nearest part of the plant to the lens. By doing this it would knock all the rest of the plant out of focus. The lighting was chosen to only have the highlight at the nearest point to the lens leaving the rest of the photo to fade into shadow, which gives the air of mystery.

Finally I converted the image to black and white and then split toned the colour in Lightroom.

The photography was shot with a 180mm Canon macro lens, at f8 with 0.5sec shutter speed and 100 ISO.

I am a professional garden & travel photographer, my website is http://stephenstuddphotography.com

I also run photography holidays & workshops: www.digitalphotographyholidays.com

Twitter; https://twitter.com/StephensPhotos

International Garden Photographer of the Year competition; http://igpoty.com


1 Comment

Behind the photographs IGPOTY

Wild Garlic (Ramsons) Stroud, Gloucestershire; commended Wildflower Landscapes category

Wild garlic (Ramsons) Stroud, Gloucestershire; commended Wildflower Landscapes category

Wild garlic (Ramsons) Stroud, Gloucestershire; commended Wildflower Landscapes category

This shot was from a commission to photograph medicinal plants for the book; The Medicine Garden by Rachel Corby. It is one of my favourite woodlands in springtime when the wild garlic flowers carpet the wood and the new fresh leaves of the trees all burst into life, the aroma in the woods is intoxicating. For this shot it was a pre sunrise start, getting in the woods at this time is such a treat as sometimes deer can be spotted and there is an air of calmness and peace.

After reading the published book, I now forage a few wild garlic leaves to make a medicine to keep colds at bay in winter and also use them in the kitchen.

Fractal Begonia; commended in the Macro Art category.

Begonia Rex L`Escargot IGPOTY Fractal Begonia commended by Stephen Studd photography

Fractal Begonia; commended in Macro Art category

I was photographing the show gardens at Malvern spring gardening show when I came across this Begonia which really caught my eye as backlit it really added another depth to the small leaf. The backlighting really showed off a translucent quality to the leaf showing its flame red veins and patternation.  I am fascinated by the repeated fractal patterns found in nature and thought this Begonia leaf displayed a perfect fractal.

The leaf was backlit just after dawn for no more than 10 minutes and the light and pattern changed considerably in that time. I used a 100mm Canon macro lens for the shot. The result is a straight shot of the fractal leaf backlit in dawn light.

Commended in the Monochrome category;  Winter Reflection.

Winter reflection Painswick Rococo Garden

Winter reflection, Painswick Rococo Garden; Commended Monochrome category

I had gone to photograph the extensive collection of snowdrops at the Rococo Garden, Painswick, on an early winter morning when there had been the first flurry of winter snow of  2012. The morning was very still and calm creating a perfect reflection in the lake. The low level light filtering through the orchard and catching the Exedra and Red House added to the atmosphere.

The image was converted to black and white as the Rococo garden has a timeless quality which I wanted to capture.

In Lightroom 3 the image was converted to black and white. Then the image was split toned with warmth in the highlights and coolness in the shadows to give it the feel of an old Kentmere paper image. Kentona paper was one of my favourite old photographic papers in the days when I wet processed black and white images as it had a lovely warm tone to it.

Twitter; https://twitter.com/StephensPhotos

Website; Stephen Studd Photography; Travel, Gardens, Plants   http://stephenstuddphotography.com

I also host small group Digital Photography Holidays; www.digitalphotographyholidays.com                                                                           Twitter; https://twitter.com/PhotographyHols

International Garden Photographer of the Year competition; http://igpoty.com