Rusty Metal Fence

Rusty metal fence

This photograph was taken in a well hidden location of the park somewhere between the Castleknock Gate and Ashtown Gate not too far from the very beautiful Whitefields Lodge. It’s another one of those hidden wildernesses that I stumble upon from time to time in the park and end up spending hours rambling around without seeing a single person.

The textures and tones of the rusting old fence were just perfect for a black & white print, if possible I would recommend clicking on the image and viewing it full size on your screen to really get the full effect.

I took this photo several months ago on a Bronica 120mm film camera using Kodak film. The print was made by hand in the darkroom and printed on Kentmere paper.

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New Life

New Life

I found this very strange creature during the summer of 2013 when I was out exploring the wild expanses of the Fifteen Acres in the park. It was a beautiful sunny morning after a night of heavy rainfall in the park and I always like to take a stroll through the long grass and forested areas on days like this. I could see this tree stump off in the distance and at first assumed somebody had actually planted a large stick into the rotting core of the tree. As I got closer it became apparent that what I was looking at was actually a brand new tree growing up through the centre of the original tree stump. I’m guessing the tree was either cut down because it was dead or maybe it had become unsafe in some way. Little did the park maintenance staff know that this tree had no plans of going away too easily. I’ve no idea if the new growth is part of the original tree or some opportunistic stranger who found a nice damp place to propagate, nor do I have any idea how it managed to pick such an unusual spot to start it’s new life. I’ll be keeping my eye on it over the next few years to see how it manages to expand in such a small space, I wonder will it slowly crack the original trunk beneath it so expect some follow on photographs at some stage.

Anybody out there know what kind of tree this is then please let me know, I’d love to know if you can identify it for me.

The photo was shot on Kodak Tri-x 120mm film using a Bronica medium format camera. The print was made on Kentmere paper by myself in the darkroom.

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To purchase a signed 10 x 10 inch print of this photo, just click the button below.

You can either pay directly via Paypal or with your own credit card. Don’t worry if you don’t have a Paypal account, you don’t actually need one, you simply click on the button and enter you card details to pay via Paypal.

The Prints are €25.00 each and that includes shipping to anywhere in the world. Your print will be made to order and will ship out within 48 hours.
If you would like a bigger or smaller size please don’t hesitate to email me with your requests.

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Two Hawthorns

Old hawthorn in the Phoenix Park

I’ve only recently become aware of my complete and utter fascination with the much maligned hawthorn tree. The reason I have only recently become aware of this is down to the simple fact that I never really knew that these were hawthorn trees, for some very strange reason I always thought hawthorns were just scrawny little bushes that grew on the side of every Irish rural road. It seems I have been very wrong all these years. I wouldn’t mind but I have been taking photographs of these truly beautiful trees for nigh on twenty years now and it never occurred to me to ask somebody in the know what they actually were.

At this juncture I should also point out that I am formerly a cabinetmaker so I really should know a thing or two about the names of the trees I was working with. I’m thinking I may have missed that particular day in school.

I do really love these tree though, just look at the shape of this little beauty. They never really grow to any great heights but when it comes to pure individualism these creatures win every time.

If you look really closely to the right of the trees you can see the GAA goalposts way off in the distance.

The photo was taken using a very old Bronica film camera. I used Kodak Tri-x 120mm film. The print was made in a traditional wet darkroom by my very own hands using Kentmere fine art photographic paper.

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To purchase a signed 12 x 9 inch print of this photo, just click the button below.

You can either pay directly via paypal or with your own credit card. Don’t worry if you don’t have a Paypal account, you don’t actually need one to simply pay with your credit card.

The Prints are €25.00 each and that includes shipping to anywhere in the world. Your print will be made to order and will ship out within 48 hours.
If you would like a bigger or smaller size please don’t hesitate to email me with your requests.

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Sunlit Trees

Through the trees near the furry glen

This is actually a fairly old photograph, possibly about seven years ago, that I recently printed up again when I was doing a darkroom printing course. I had printed the photograph years ago but never really liked the results I was getting. I decided to bring it with me to the course and see if I could improve it in any way. Sometimes you just get a photograph that won’t print as I saw it on the day through the lens of the camera. It can happen and it’s always best to leave it for a while and then go back, having said that, seven years is probably a bit too long to wait.
The photograph was taken using Kodak Tri-x 120mm film [400 iso] using a Bronica medium format camera.

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To purchase a signed 10 x 8 inch print of this photo, just click the button below.

You can either pay directly via paypal or with your own credit card. Don’t worry if you don’t have a Paypal account, you don’t actually need one to simply pay with your credit card.

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Tall Trees Near Knockmaroon Gate

Tall trees near Knockmaroon Gate with couple

This photo was taken close to the Knockmaroon gates on the way down towards The Furry Glen.

The photo was taken on a lovely Autumn morning using a high contrast red filter on the camera to give the sky that lovely dramatic black effect. The photo was taken on Kodak tri-x 120mm film using a Bronica medium format camera. The print was then made in a traditional darkroom on Kentmere paper. The two people in the photo were a pure accident, but I kind of love the scale they add to the trees, I have a version without the people in the shot and you don’t really get a sense of how tall the trees are without them in it.

Enjoy

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To purchase a signed 10 x 10 inch print of this photo, just click the button below.

You can either pay directly via paypal or with your own credit card. Don’t worry if you don’t have a Paypal account, you don’t actually need one to simply pay with your credit card.

The Prints are €25.00 each and that includes shipping to anywhere in the world. Your print will be made to order and will ship out within 48 hours.
If you would like a bigger or smaller size please don’t hesitate to email me with your requests.

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The Old Man

Tree near the Visitor Centre

At this stage you are probably well aware of my minor obsession with trees and their many different shapes and personalities. To those people out there who think I may be a wee bit mad to think trees have personalities then have a look at this old guy and try tell me he isn’t riddled with all sorts of character. Believe it or not I only discovered this particular old creature a few months ago and then we spent a wonderful afternoon together. When I find a tree as beautiful and full of character as this one I tend to just sit down for a while in various spots away from the tree and slowly make my mind up about how I am going to try and capture it on film. If you just rush straight in with the camera you may not give yourself the time necessary to get acquainted with the trees surroundings and they can be just as important as the tree itself. This old guy seemed to be totally at one with the long grass, wild nettles and in particular the ivy that at first seems to be trying to take over the tree. After a while I began to realise that the tree and the ivy were pretty much living as one, each one needing the other to survive. Ok, so the ivy genuinely does need to the tree to survive but the tree may not necessarily need the ivy but if you look at the branch growing up from the left of the photograph the ivy growing at the top of it actually looks like some kind of winter warming hat sitting on top of the branch. You may need to view the photograph slightly larger to see exactly what I mean but if you do so briefly and come back to me then you may see the slightly badly knit hat sitting on the top of the branch, it’s a bit ragged looking but seems to be doing the trick nonetheless.
I’m not going to tell you where the tree is though, that’s my little secret.

The photograph was taken using a 120mm Bronica film camera loaded with Kodak tri-x 400 black and white film.
The actual print was made using my very own hands in a traditional wet darkroom.
Enjoy

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To purchase a signed 10 x 10 inch print of this photo, just click the button below.

You can either pay directly via paypal or with your own credit card. Don’t worry if you don’t have a Paypal account, you don’t actually need one to simply pay with your credit card.

The Prints are €25.00 each and that includes shipping to anywhere in the world. Your print will be made to order and will ship out within 48 hours.
If you would like a bigger or smaller size please don’t hesitate to email me with your requests.

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Bessborough Lodge

Ashtown Gate Lodge [police station]

This very beautiful stone building at Ashtown Gates is known as Bessborough Lodge. It is joined to another gate lodge which you can just about see at the right hand edge of the photograph. There are two lodges at the Ashtown Gates, very beautiful matching brown lodges facing each other at the exit from the park. This particular building was designed by Decimus Burton and was completed way back in 1848. The house was originally built as a police barracks and was used to house policemen serving in the park and also had room to accommodate prisoners. It was obviously a fully serving police station when it was originally built but now it accommodates staff serving in the park.
I actually ended up chatting to some people coming out of one of the lodges after taking this photograph and they reliably informed me that the police barracks had several drunk tanks in it. Anybody caught wandering around the park under the influence of alcohol would be swiftly taken away and thrown in the cell for the night to sleep it off. Obviously drunkenness in the park was frowned upon back then, as I suppose it is nowadays too in fairness. Can only imagine how busy they would have been after the Swedish House Mafia concert there last year.

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To purchase a signed 10 x 10 inch print of this photo, just click the button below.

You can either pay directly via paypal or with your own credit card. Don’t worry if you don’t have a Paypal account, you don’t actually need one to simply pay with your credit card.

The Prints are €25.00 each and that includes shipping to anywhere in the world. Your print will be made to order and will ship out within 48 hours.
If you would like a bigger or smaller size please don’t hesitate to email me with your requests.

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Hibernian Cottage

Hibernian Cottage

Ok, so this is a recent film shot of a rather beautiful lodge in the park called Hibernian Cottage. The house is situated just at the entrance gates to St. Mary’s Hospital which was originally the Hibernian Asylum or the Royal Hibernian Military School as it was later renamed. The Hibernian Asylum was original built to help orphaned children of soldiers who had fallen during the war and was then extended to cover the needs of destitute families of soldiers leaving Ireland for services overseas.
This lodge has for many years given me so much trouble to photograph that any sane person would have given up at this stage. The big problem with trying to get a really good photograph of this lodge would be the fact that you can’t really see that much of it from across the road. Normally I would just get a little closer but that is not really a solution in this scenario. My only other option was to cut down all the hedges at the dead of night and hope that nobody caught me, but cutting down trees as you may well know is not really my style now is it. So I would try going back at different times of the day and even different times of the year to see what I could do to capture this really beautiful lodge on film.
Right, so there I am with some really lovely long shadows beginning to appear on an early summers morning, the branches above me making that lovely x like shape on the grass in the foreground. I must admit at this stage I was really beginning to feel good about this one. I spent a while walking around from side to side to just get the best angle of the lodge and the shadows. Once I had decided on an angle that I was happy with I got the camera all set up and made all my little adjustments. By the time I was all ready to go when this delivery van arrives and proceeds to stop right in the centre of my shot, to be honest I think the driver was on his phone but he sat there in my photograph for at least ten minutes. By the time he decided to move on and go on his way this scene you see in the photograph had pretty much miraculously appeared. The ladies in their wheelchairs and their carers had stopped off at the gates of the lodge to pick some flowers from around the gateway. I rattled off as many shots as the camera could handle before they all walked away and everything was back to normal. This was my favourite of them all. I really like the sense of movement that the girl in the middle conveys. I must admit that something as simple as the shadows on the wall really make me love this photo above the rest in the series.

The photograph was taken on a Bronica medium format film camera using Kodak Tri-x 400 speed film.

The print was made using my very own bare hands in a traditional darkroom.

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To purchase a signed 10 x 10 inch print of this photo, just click the button below.

You can either pay directly via paypal or with your own credit card. Don’t worry if you don’t have a Paypal account, you don’t actually need one to simply pay with your credit card.

The Prints are €25.00 each and that includes shipping to anywhere in the world. Your print will be made to order and will ship out within 48 hours.
If you would like a bigger or smaller size please don’t hesitate to email me with your requests.

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Tree Lined Chesterfield Avenue

Chesterfield Avenue
There is just something about a tree lined avenue that I simply cannot walk past without plonking my camera down on a tripod and letting the shutter go click.

I was actually out for a stroll a few weeks back on a very determined mission to try and continue my quest to photograph the lodges of the Phoenix Park. I had taken my bicycle with me to the park for a change, if you saw the size of my Bronica camera and tripod you wouldn’t really wonder why I drive all the time. I had this very precarious set-up which involved some old fashioned sturdy elastic straps to keep the tripod attached to the crossbar of the bike. A disaster waiting to happen really. Thankfully, said disaster happened whilst I was cycling in soft [and quite long] grass. Basically the elastic made a sound like “Boing”, the tripod fell to the ground and I had to make a very rapid stop, before I lost my tripod. I was pretty lucky the strap didn’t catch one of my legs [or something further up] as these things are like some old torture aid.

Anyway, I saw this scene and I started photographing.

The lodges can wait, they ain’t going anywhere in the near future.

This photo was taken on a Bronica medium format camera using Kodak Tri-X 120mm film. The print was made by my very own hands in a traditional wet darkroom.

(Comments and opinions are greatly appreciated, please feel free to let me know what you think)

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To purchase a signed 10 x 10 inch print of this photo, just click the button below.

You can either pay directly via paypal or with your own credit card. Don’t worry if you don’t have a Paypal account, you don’t actually need one to simply pay with your credit card.

The Prints are €25.00 each and that includes shipping to anywhere in the world. Your print will be made to order and will ship out within 48 hours.
If you would like a bigger or smaller size please don’t hesitate to email me with your requests.

Alternatively you can purchase unsigned prints or postcards of this photo from the Redbubble site from as little as €2.50 by clicking this link.

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