Field Trip to Glencoe


On January 19th a small group of students and myself headed north to chase the light. As we drove towards Callander the skies looked bleak and the temperature dropped. The first signs of snow appeared on the hilltops.

Stopping at Loch Lubnaig did not give us much hope of capturing great images but we got out the minibus to have a look anyway. This gave me the opportunity to talk about Composition of an image and the patience you need to be a Landscape photographer.Loch Lubnaig sig

You can see how bleak it looked. We carried on regardless. The next stop was the Green Welly ( of course ). After a quick cup of tea and the light looking better we headed up towards Glencoe.

As we passed a loch at Bridge of Orchay the light came out to play. Quickly we parked the minibus and headed over to the water. Here I should mention a word of advice. Check that the gate with the padlock is actually locked before you climb over it!!

Bridge of Orchay sigBridge of Orchay sig

As you can see the light was there but just not where we wanted it. The sky looked overcast and the beautiful light that was there when we arrived just faded in front of our eyes. Again this is a familiar feeling for anyone who spends time taking Landscape images. You have to learn when to move on and return another day.

Moving on to Rannoch moor, the light continued to evade us and everything looked quite flat. Again a decision was made not to spend too much time trying to get something that did not work. We looked at the different compositions for a good image and imaged what it would look like with better light.

Stopping at Blackrock cottage Buachaille Etive Mor in the distance was hidden behind cloud which did not appear to be moving very fast – or even at all.

Next stop was the waterfall at the base of Buachaille Etive Mor. Wellies had been donned as the way to reach it is through a peat bog and we were prepared!! Unfortunately the peat bog decided to try swallowing Jade’s wellies and she ended up with wet feet. Good job she had a spare pair of socks and a change of footwear. Ahh the joys of the Landscape Photographer.

Another lesson learned is to check everything in the foreground and if possible ask for your fellow photographers to remove anything from your image. Spot the bag??

This spot can be very crowded in the better weather. Getting there early can help.

As we drove along  towards Glencoe Lochan, I pointed out locations for future visits. Then the light changed and brought a different set of problems. Even using filters does not always work.

It was a long day, starting out at 7.30am and not getting back until 7pm. We had a few laughs along the way and may even have learned a couple of things. Locations have been kept in mind for the future. Position of the sun at different times of the day will be remembered. Most of all I hope the students have learned that they should enjoy there time in the landscape and not rush to grab a shot then move on.

I look forward to seeing the student’s images.


One thought on “Field Trip to Glencoe”

  1. You don’t need many to make a good day out Elizabeth. Looks like they enjoyed themselves.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.