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Stephen Elliott – 1st October in the Hope Valley

Blog Posted on 05 Oct 2011

This last weekend has been unseasonably warm with temperatures in the day hovering around 26 degrees then cooling off steadily through the night, ideal conditions for producing low lying mist in the bottom of the valleys and a perfect photographic opportunity.

Saturdays plan therefore was to shoot the sunrise looking down over the Hope Valley. Anyone passing through the valley during the last 100 years will have been hard pressed not to notice Hope Cement works sitting on the hillside between the villages of Castleton and Bradwell. Regarded by many as an eyesore the works had been a vital part of the community and one of the major employers of local people in the area (myself included!). As it is part of the landscape I had decided to make it my main subject and thought a dawn shoot would work well mixing the electric lighting from the works with the light from the rising sun.

My chosen location was up on the bank side above Pindale at the back of Castleton looking down onto the Cement works with the valley receding into the distance. I was really pleased that the mist had appeared and could see the thistle heads on the bank being backlit by the first light of the day; this shot was taken about 30 minutes before the sun broke the horizon.

Olympus E5 12-60mm f2.8, 15secs f14 @ 23mm 0.9 reverse ND grad

Moving my tripod round to the left and looking up to Winhill pike I’m treated to delicate soft pastel tones as the early mist lays gently on the valley floor

Olympus E5 12-60mm f2.8,  0.5s f11 @ 23mm Lee 0.6 ND grad

It was then time to move location and a 15 minute walk over the fields towards Castleton brings you out above Cave Dale with Peveril castle on the opposite bank, it takes a while for the sun to get high enough to clear the hill and illuminate the castle so plenty of time to choose the next composition

Olympus E5 12-60mm f2.8,  1/40 f9 @ 12mm Lee 0.6 ND grad

A walk a little further up the valley and this limestone outcrop took my fancy, I had to cautiously make my way around it and precariously balance on the edge to get my final shot

Olympus E5 12-60mm f2.8,  1/100 f6.3 @ 12mm Lee 0.6 ND grad

Certainly an interesting start to the month with a couple of quite different subjects, today’s industrial development to another one from the 10th century.

This blog was brought to you by Stephen Elliott


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