This island is a strange place. It hugs the base of cliffs on the Crozon peninsula in Finistère, Brittany. This particular part of the Crozon is a narrow finger of land pointing to nearby Brest. And the proximity of that port town is significant. Brest has been strategically important to France for centuries. And this explains why the Crozon peninsula, which overlooks the approaches to the port, is heavily militarised. It is littered with fortifications, most dating from the 19th […]
This is a shot taken on a recent trip to Brittany. I’m pleased with it – which is just as well because it took me nine years to get it. These are the remains of a pier or jetty sticking out into the Rade de Brest – the confluence of several rivers where they meet the Atlantic. It’s shot from the shore of the Crozon peninsula, a beautifully rugged part of Finistère. I was attracted to these pillars because of […]
Sometimes you have an idea for an image in your head. But when your subject matter is the landscape, nature doesn’t always cooperate.
This is a continuation of yesterday’s post because this image was shot on the same foggy morning. Having shot a number of photographs of a very bare and simply landscape, I turned my attention to the trees lining one of the several rivers that feed into this estuary. One of my reasons for this is that this is a scene not entirely devoid of mankind’s presence. If you squint very hard you’ll see some boats moored at the river’s opening. […]
Sometimes you look out of the window, see the weather and think, ‘there has to be a picture waiting for me’. That’s what happened here.
We stopped here just to give the dog a run. We’d been out exploring the Finistère coast all day and, with the light fading, had decided to head back to the gîte. But our old dog Zola needed to stretch his legs. We threw the ball for him a few hundred times (so it seemed), and just as we were all feeling tired and eager to get back in the car, nature decided to put on a show. Now I […]
Of all the images in the exhibition, L’Esprit Insolite, this has the simplest story. And it’s another of those ‘always carry a camera’ moments. It was a beautiful day in September. We drove to the nearby town of St-Fraimbault, mainly to walk the dog around the lake (he does so love to go for a swim), and also to take a look at the damage wrought by recent storms. Our bit of Normandy had taken something of a battering. I […]
Le Bec d’Andaine is strange, as beaches go. It’s at the base of the Cotentin peninsula, on the west coast of the Normandy department of the Manche. It has a fine view of Mont St Michel. And the beach is wide and spacious. Very wide. Maybe too wide. In fact, in the many times we’ve visited the Bec d’Andaine we’ve rarely had a proper glimpse of the sea. This is La Baie du Mont St Michel and it has some […]
They say that familiarity breeds contempt. It can also make you blind to what’s right on your doorstep. This is also a lesson about always making time to grab that photograph. It was early in the morning. I had the car loaded with filmmaking gear and was on my way to start work on the first day of shooting a short film, Cigarette. Making films, even amateur ones like ours, is a complex and exhausting endeavour, so my mind was […]
This is an example of why you should always carry a camera. We were on holiday in Brittany. In the late autumn we like to get to the coast for a week. Most often we head for Finistère, but this time we decided to stay closer to home. Our dog Zola was old and wouldn’t have liked the long haul to the west coast. But that was okay because the Côtes d’Armor is another of our favourite areas of Brittany. […]
A significant proportion of my landscape work is about the traces that mankind leaves in the environment – or, as I call it, the Layered Land. Some of the signs are obvious, others less so.
We didn’t get much in the way of snow this past winter but we did get the hardest frost I’ve ever seen. I first wrote about this back in January, when it happened. The weather had been bitingly cold for a few days. Each night, when I took the dog for his final walk of the day, I’d see a strange glittering effect as the torch beam caught the frost forming on every leaf and blade of grass. I kept […]
Sometimes, when you’re looking for one thing you find another. This was quite a magical day. We were at La Pointe de la Torche, a small headland poking out into the sea at the southern end of the Plage de Tronoan in Finistère, Brittany.
I’ve passed this bit of woodland many times, but rarely without photographing it. It stands beside the voie verte (greenway) that runs for 70-plus kilometres from the Normandy town of Domfront to Mont St Michel.
Returning to a place that has previously impressed or moved you can be disappointing. What is held in your memory as a marvellous discovery can seem, on a second look, mundane. But that wasn’t the case with La Plage de Tronoan. We discovered this beach on a previous trip to Finistère. This November we returned, in part to revisit places we knew to be beautiful, but also as a way of saying a final farewell to our old dog Zola. […]