This is the final image from the huge glut taken over one sunny weekend in Kerry. This is a particular favourite. It often transpires with my work that the harder a photo was to take the better the final image. This was definitely more difficult than most. I was balancing on some slippy rocks, as the tide came in around me. I took this photo and then had to grap the tripod and camera, and stick it in the air as I was worried it would get soaked! After one particularly big wave, the water came right in and I got spooked and decided to run for shore. Unfortunately the water was now at least up to my knees, and by the time I realised it was too late so I kept on wading back to the beach.
While wading through water as it slowly entered my boots isn't exactly what you would call fun, the experience symbolises everything I love about landscape photography; however cheesy or cliched the final image may be. To me landscape photography is about going the extra mile: going to the place no-one else could be bothered with, at the time everyone else with more sanity is tucked up in bed. It's about the sense of adventure and a unique sense of place, which I have only experienced through the viewfinder of my camera. Photography forces you to slow down, stop and really look, when the rest of your group has long given up braving the winds and retreated for a coffee or to the safety of the car.
It might, to an outsider, seem like perhaps one of the dullest hobbies on earth: standing around in the cold at ungodly hours of the morning doing nothing but adjusting settings on a camera and pressing a button now and again must appear to be akin to trainspotting or some equally inexplicable pursuit. For me, however, this type of photography at its best, on an astonishingly beautiful sunrise in unimaginable solitude, or a unique landscape discovered after a hike of a couple of hours, can give me butterflies in my stomach or make my knees weak with excitement. Landscape photography isn't trainspotting: it's extreme sports.