Archive for the ‘Scotland’ Tag

Edinburgh, Layers of Grey   4 comments

Close to the North Sea, Edinburgh can sometimes appear as grey and bleak as the weather that rolls in off the ocean.  But there is also a beauty to the monotone stone buildings which stack layer upon layer as the you take in this hillside city.  Where color does appear in Edinburgh, it jumps out at you –whether it’s the flowers and trees that dot the city in the summer, or a permanent fixture like the blue and white bridge in the top photo.  And if you somehow manage to forget that you are in a world-famous European city, all you have to do is look up to the castle that dominates everything from its vantage point above it all.


Posted September 1, 2011 by ~ Bruce in Europe, Travel Photography

Tagged with

Street Sign, St. Andrews, Scotland   Leave a comment

Melanie rolled her eyes and pretended that she didn’t know me, but c’mon.  Who wouldn’t snap this shot if they had the chance?

Posted August 28, 2011 by ~ Bruce in Signs of the Times

Tagged with

Saint Columba, Edinburgh Castle, Scotland   Leave a comment

I waited about half an hour for other visitors to clear out of the chapel so that I could get an unimpeded shot of this stained glass window.

Posted August 28, 2011 by ~ Bruce in Uncategorized

Tagged with

Silhouette, Eilean Donan Castle, Western Highlands, Scotland   Leave a comment

Late in the day of an all-day photo shoot at Eilean Donan Castle in the Western Highlands.  I hiked over to the east side of the castle and lined up the shot so that the castle was directly in front of the setting sun.  It was lightly raining at the time (note the rain drops in the water and reflection), so I covered the camera with a rain cover and kept on shooting.  A rain cover is a wise thing to have everywhere you go in Scotland.

Posted July 18, 2011 by ~ Bruce in Europe, Travel Photography

Tagged with

Lismore Lighthouse   2 comments

I’ve seen a few lighthouses in my life (boy, have I) thanks to my wife’s passion for them.  The most beautiful by far is Lismore Lighthouse on the western coast of Scotland.  Besides being visually stunning Lismore has an interesting heritage, having been built in 1833 by Robert Stevenson — grandfather of Scottish novelist Robert Louis Stevenson (Treasure Island, Kidnapped, and Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde).

The official location of Lismore Lighthouse (which only a Scot could possibly understand) is “on Eilean Musdile in the Firth of Lorne at the entrance to Loch Linnhe”.  I could come up with a pretty good drinking game involving reciting that really fast while sipping single malt Scotch.  Not that anyone in Scotland needs an excuse to drink, at least based on what I observed on my trips there.  Like when we shared a train ride from London to Edinburgh with the Scottish national rugby team . . . a story for another post.

In any case, the best way to capture a good view of Lismore is to take the ferry from Oban toward Mull and Iona.  We had a particularly cold ferry ride even though it was June, but that is what you can expect in Scotland, especially on the water.  One other photographer and I left the warmth of the cabin and went out on deck to take photos.  I was able to take about two dozen shots as we passed by.  Thanks to strong winds and the vibrations of the ferry’s engines only three or four turned out acceptably sharp.  I was looking forward to another chance on the return trip but the ferry return route was far removed from the lighthouse.

The fare to ride the ferry is pretty steep but well worth the cost of seeing this magnificent lighthouse.  Throw in the chance to see Iona Abbey, Fingal’s Cave, and the rugged Scottish coast, and I would part with double the fare.  Highly recommended for photographers and non-photographers alike.

Posted June 15, 2011 by ~ Bruce in Europe, Seascapes, Travel Photography

Tagged with , ,

Eilean Donan / Changing Weather   1 comment

I’ve never been a big fan of picture postcards for one simple reason — so many of them are taken on blue-sky idyllic days (and then over saturated into colors that don’t normally exist in nature, but that’s a slightly different gripe).  Now, there’s nothing wrong with sunshine and blue skies when traveling and vacationing.  But for interesting photographs, I’ll take changing weather over blue skies any day.  And no where does the weather change more frequently than in the Western Highlands of Scotland.  I spent a good ten hours visiting Eilean Donan castle, and in that one day experienced sunshine, lightning, heavy downpours, rainbows, and everything in between.  Those “in between” moments, like the one above, can be spectacular.

Even if they’re not postcard worthy.


Posted June 12, 2011 by ~ Bruce in Europe, Travel Photography

Tagged with