Damian sat with Jamie on the outward journey, Mel had sat near the front with her dad who was a long-established member of the Group. She’d been telling him about what she’d learned from Damian. Most of the members knew each other well – and those who didn’t were quickly assimilated into the conversations around them. As the coach manoeuvred its way around the, often twisting, narrow lanes approaching Malham, the excitement was almost palpable. Mel rose from her seat and made her way along the aisle, distributing details of the programme for the day. These had been planned with supplier some days ago and had been printed by the supplier and stapled to some of its promotional leaflets.
The plan was to start with a walk to Malham Cove for the opportunity to take some photographs of the famous landscape ‘pavement’. Damian would be remaining with the Group to demonstrate the use of the new products to them and to let them handle the equipment for themselves – the aim being to stimulate the well-known photographers’ nemesis – GAS – Gear Acquisition Syndrome. This is the feeling that, in order to become a better photographer – one needs always more sophisticated equipment. Even some experienced members of the Group would not be immune.
While Damian was busy, Mel had agreed with Jamie that she could ascend to capture some images of the ‘Malham Tree – a single, weather-beaten small tree that, though it stands outside the limestone, is usually photographed to best effect with lines of the ‘pavement’ as foreground leading towards it. By the time she returned to the Group, they were already walking back to the village for refreshments before the afternoon’s proceedings.
Damian cornered her as she was making her way with her drink to a table. He asked how she’d fared taking her shot. She waited until they were seated with their drinks before them on the table. She removed her camera and iPad from her backpack, connected them with a cable and let him scroll through her images on the tablet screen while they waited for their meals to be brought to the table.
‘Wow!’ he said at one of the shots. I know that yours is not the latest in our line-up, but would you let us use this image. He outlined a plan for commissioning a magazine article in which it would be used – possibly as a cover, if he could get the publisher to agree. Otherwise, what he had to say was pretty much what Jamie had hoped for.
The afternoon continued as planned, starting with a walk to Janet’s Foss waterfall for more photographs. Damian wanted to show off the capabilities of the new prime lens. Mel took her own shots. The final stop was at Gorsdale Scar – though very little water was falling that day. Damian used it to demonstrate his wide-angle lens while Mel was busy photographing the Group members as they listened and as they took their own photographs. As the Group made their way back to the coach, by agreement with Jamie, Mel took a different path back, photographing images of a stream and of a clapper bridge.
On the return journey, Mel and Damian sat together. By the time that the coach got back to the shop, Mel felt that she’d been interviewed all over again, but understood that he’d needed to know enough about her capabilities to be able to sell his idea to his company and to the magazine publisher. They’d discussed copyright – she’d insisted on retaining control but was prepared to permit agreed uses.
Back at the shop she promised to email a copy of the ‘Lone Tree’ photo to Damian and he assured her that he’d be emailing her soon to arrange the next move or moves. Once she’d found her way through the Group members back to her dad, she saw he seemed to be deep in conversation with Jamie. They turned to her. Brian asked did she want a lift home with him or was there anything she needed to do in the shop. Jamie told her to get off home. He thanked her for her contribution to the day and he’d see her tomorrow to discuss their respective feedback about the outing.
In the car with her dad, he wanted to know how she’d enjoyed her day. In turn, she asked him how he’d enjoyed it and what he’d been talking about with Jamie. He told her how impressed Jamie was with her.
A change of scenery again. The bluebells season is just about ended, only to be replaced by dandelion seeds being blown everywhere. Today’s shot is a close up of a dandelion seed head.
I used my Pentax KP 24 MM cropped sensor camera with a Sigma 70 mm f/2.8 DG macro lens. The EXIF data were shutter speed was 1/10 seconds at f/5.6 and 70 mm. The ISO was 100. The shot was tripod mounted and post-processed in Lightroom.