My Walk this Week – Windy Day in Colwyn Bay

My walk this week takes me back a couple of months to a working visit to Colwyn Bay on the north coast of Wales. It was a fresh Spring day and the wind was blowing strong. I think the image below describes the conditions perfectly.

Whether or not I develop a StillWalks video from all the material I recorded on this short walk along the beach remains to be seen. If I do, it will not be one of the relaxing ones – more invigorating I think!

The off shore wind farm seen on the horizon of the first shot below is an interesting feature, sometimes there and sometimes not! Depending on the light (constantly changing on this particular day), the turbines can become almost completely invisible or present complex repeating patterns as they shine with reflected sunlight.

Running into the wind

Running into the wind

Windy Day in Colwyn Bay

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A Sparkle of Sunlight

My walk this week around the lake at The Waterside revealed some truly beautiful patterns of sunlight. That’s not to say these effects of light have not been seen before, I’m sure they have – however, that does not make them any less remarkable. I don’t think I could ever get tired of the wonders of nature, however small or common they may be, they still connect with my brain and spark my synapses to produce a sense of wonder.

 

The Waterside Walk-16

A Sparkle of Sunlight

After climbing the lakeside steps and shooting a mother duck and her single duckling (photographically speaking of course), I came upon the footbridge seen the background of one of yesterday’s images.

Crossing the Footbridge

Looking closely at the water flowing into the lake the sun glinting off the ripples made me pause and shoot again. My first shot was underexposed but just like the overexposed photo I posted during my walk last week, the effect was quite powerful.

The correctly exposed image is the first of the flowing water shots in the gallery below and this presented an interesting phenomenon – a bubble on the surface of the water appears not to be affected by the fast flow. I guess it was only there for the split second I took the shot. The underexposed image is the last in this sequence and I further enhanced the effect of light and dark, but only a little.

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Looking South from the Beacons

As I approached the first, (or smaller) source of the River Taff, Blaen Taf Fechan (correction – Taf Fechan, see comments on previous post), on my walk this week with the Living Taff group, I took yet another of my frequent stops to look at the view. Looking south from the slopes of Pen y Fan in the Brecon Beacons, I could see all the way to the Bristol Channel, Flat Holm island and beyond to Somerset in England.

Brecon Beacons

England can’t be seen in the shot above which concentrates on the patterns and textures on the slopes of Craig Gwaun Taf which leads up to Corn Du, but the first of the shots below gives a pretty good wider view of the scene, even though the distant atmosphere was quite hazy. In the closer surroundings of the mountains the colours and patterns of light and shade kept changing with the passing clouds.

The Blaen Taf Fechan (below) joins the Blaen Taf Fawr (correction – Taf Fawr, see comments on previous post) at Merthyr Tydfil to become the Afon Taf or River Taff which then flows on down to Wales’ capital city, Cardiff.

These photos are devoid of humans but they were there and there was the constant murmur of voices all around us. It wasn’t disturbing or even annoying really, just present.

Pen y Fan Voices

Changing Light and Patterns in the Pier

The sun was going down on my walk across the beach at Colwyn Bay and as it did so, the light subtly changed. There was some hazy cloud cover in the west and so the contrast of light and shade quite never disappeared, but still had an effect on the atmosphere as well as my camera settings. The patterns in the construction of the pier were always there along with the colour, more or less strengthened by the sunlight.

Colwyn Bay-28

Colwyn Bay-27

Tunnel of Light and Shade, Pattern and Texture

As I descend from my hill walk this week, this tunnel of light and shade is full of pattern and texture. The light and shade itself creates some great patterns and shapes, but they are also very obviously present in the structure of a mossy wall and the peeling bark of a birch tree.

More images from this walk can be seen on Instagram and/or the StillWalks Facebook page and Twitter.

Goppa-23

The Textures of Swansea Canal

From liquid smooth through crusty and tatty to razor sharp, the range of textures I spotted on my walk along Swansea canal was wide,  to say nothing of the colour and pattern, light and shade that created a natural art exhibition for me.

The water of the canal may have reflected the colour in the sky on this beautiful morning, but it certainly did not reflect the texture of the barbed wire fence round the Mond Nickel Works.

And there was pattern to be seen in the reflection of light from the water under one of the bridges and a very crusty texture on the pipe structures also crossing the canal.

Canal Reflection

Walking Under the Radar

Considering that the old WWII radar station on Rhosilli Down is in ruins, I was definitely walking under the radar when I reached this point on my walk this week. The light and shade on the old slabs of concrete made for some interesting abstract patterns in the landscape.

old radar station

Colour and a Ghostly Light

The colour in these night lights and their reflections in the water of Hemlington lake is clear, but whatever colour may be in the branch below as it stretches into the night under a desaturating street lamp, is lost almost entirely – I find it quite ghostly.

urban light reflections

branches in night light

Light and Dark

The view of and colours in the night sky over Middlesbrough changed as I walked around the other, unlit side of Hemlington Lake. The shapes and silhouettes of trees enhanced the reflected colour on the clouds and proved there was light to be seen. However, the footpath on this side of the lake was very dark and it was only because I know the path well that I had no problems seeing where I should walk.

As I came round this side of the lake I disturbed some of the birds roosting in the vegetation at the lake side. So at this point in my night walk, there was a little more sound than perhaps there should have been.

Night Birds

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trees at night

trees and night sky

night sky and lake

Winter Colours

Changeable weather can make it difficult to predict the conditions and therefore what to wear on a walk – rain and sunshine can be expected as well as rapidly changing temperatures. It can also mean that the colours to be seen in the landscape change dramatically and so winter colours can include the deep shadows of cloud and simultaneously the bright colours of nature reflected in sunlight.

These images just begin to show this effect with the colour in the bare branches and twigs of the tree or the reflective feathers of the ducks set against the slate grey of the water

Hemlington Lakeside

Mallard

Ducks