Red Sky At Night….

Shepherd’s delight!

Red sky in the morning……shepherd’s warning’!

Over the past year we’ve had time to contemplate Nature in all her glory and a beautiful sunset is a sight to behold.

This is a view from my bedroom window – the sky is ablaze – awesome in the truest sense of the word.

I have been on holidays where people have gathered to applaud the sunset – in South Africa on a huge veranda overhanging a river with hippos wallowing in the water below, in Menorca where there is a bar hewn out of some rocks on the coast where you can enjoy a cocktail while you gaze out to sea and watch that golden orb sink below the horizon or in places like Norway where in November sunrise and sunset create a surreal pink glow across the snow on the mountains at 11 o’clock in the morning and 3 in the afternoon – which gives you a very small window of daylight to get your shopping done!

But the sun can be a menacing force – this is Rio – at 8.30 in the morning! already sweltering at 28 degrees

I preferred the clear cold skies over the Andes or the towns in Chile, even with their mad arrangement of electricity cables!

The UK’s climate is fast becoming more extreme but for now we can still enjoy its gentler presence and more muted skies

although they are not without their drama

Let’s hope we will soon have something to lift our spirits and that the Covid pandemic will soon be a thing of the past

Through the Looking Glass

Or to paraphrase Lewis Carroll, ‘Looking Though the Glass’ !

I was delighted to see the other evening while enjoying my glass of Tío Pepe – other dry sherries are available! –  that the image of the tv screen beyond was inverted in the liquid in the glass, with some  interesting results (all to do with how light is refracted through glass – vague recollections are coming back to me from school about refraction and wavelengths and prisms) but, being more of an artist than a scientist,  I am more interested in the effect than the cause!

I wasn’t expecting to see these images and they were whizzing past on different tv programmes so I captured a few on the spur of the moment with my phone – next time I will set this experiment up  properly  – it’s good to have a few indoor photography assignments  up your sleeve as the cold weather approaches! and there are a few ways to improve these shots. Here are some of my favourites from this first impromptu experiment.




‘All Things Bright and Beautiful’ (sung with gusto!)

All things bright and beautiful,       All creature  great and small,

All things wise and wonderful,        the Lord God made them all.

Those words take me right back to my infant school assembly! Everyone knows this hymn,  even today – and most of us can say we know the words by heart – to the first two verses anyway!!

I’ve been trying to think of inspirational themes for my photography outings – much more successful with a theme!! Now it so happens that the theme for the 2021 BBC Countryfile Calendar Competition is ‘Bright and Beautiful’ so I think I might just give that a whirl.

Of course it’s light and dark that create all those great photographic effects:  the photographer who can capture light falling in a special way on a scene or lighting up a person’s face (to minimize those wrinkles!) holds the key to success – candle light, the glow of an open fire, reflections bouncing back off office windows, sunlight streaming through stained glass – Christmas lights! – all lovely, but Nature’s light has the most appeal – glorious sunsets, or dappled sunlight through the trees in a forest, light caught in water droplets on a leaf or clear blue skies over snow capped mountains. I’m going in search of some of those now but in the meantime here are some I prepared earlier !