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.

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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.

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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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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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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The Tree Went Boom

Peoples Flower Garden
There is something about this tree that always reminds me of the mushroom cloud following an atomic explosion. Don’t get me wrong here, I don’t actually have any first hand experience of atomic explosions and I don’t think there has ever been one in the Phoenix Park, but maybe this tree has seen some video footage of one such explosion and has since decided to grow up exactly like one. These are the present dangers of allowing trees to look over your shoulder as you wander around the park with your smartphone watching youtube. Next we are going to find trees taking on ridiculous Jackass like comedy stunts. Just make sure you watch yourself next time you go to the park, you may end up having elastic bands catapulted at your head, or the back of your legs if you’re really unlucky.

This shot was taken in the stunning surrounds of the Peoples Flower Garden, you can find them just on the right hand side as you come in the main gates of the park.

The photographic print was made in the old fashioned way by my very own hands in a darkroom. The picture was taken using a Bronica medium format camera on Kodak Tri-x film, possibly my all time favourite film at this stage.

(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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Gates Of The Walled Garden

Farmleigh House

These are the side gates into the wonderful walled garden on the grounds of Farmleigh in the park. These gates are located to the right of the main gates to the garden, almost directly behind the boat house café. If you are familiar with Farmleigh you will most likely know exactly where these gates are, if you don’t really know Farmleigh then I recommend you rectify that matter and get yourself down there sometime. I love this place in both Summer and Winter, both seasons have their charm. The staff who look after this place have an awful lot to be very proud of, parts of it are wonderfully wild but other sections look like they have been trimmed with a pair of small scissors, such is the care that goes into it. Some day I expect to arrive and find an army of gardeners down on their knees trimming each individual blade of grass to the exact height. I have been informed by staff in the house that these mysterious gardeners only work in the dead of night though, so no chance of a photograph to prove my theory.

(Sometimes I like to bend the truth on this blog, this could be one of those moments)

The 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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Another One Bites The Dust

Regular visitors will probably already know that apart from being dedicated to the world inside the Phoenix Park this website is also somewhat obsessed with trees, be they upright or fallen. Whilst I am always a bit sad to come across fallen trees, I do also love to photograph them in all their majestic [but dead] glory. This one has been sitting on the ground for so long at this stage that it was almost entirely covered in lovely soft fluffy moss.

I wish I could do a scratch and sniff feature with this photo as the smell in the area when I was taking it was just amazing. A friend of mine recently described it as the smell of slightly stale hummus, not sure I totally agree but I like it nonetheless.

(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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Wellington Testimonial

The Wellington Testimonial

Ok, I think we are finally at the end of my [slight] obsession with the Wellington Testimonial, to use it’s proper name. If you are reading this Conor, then look, I have finally used the official name.

Most people, including myself I should add, call this particular structure the Wellington Monument, well I have news for you now my friends, it’s actually called the Wellington Testimonial.

The Wellington Testimonial was designed by Robert Smirke as a testimonial to Arthur Wellesley, Duke of Wellington. It was completed in 1861 and is the tallest obelisk in Europe at just over 62 metres tall. I gather it was once the largest obelisk in the world, but alas no longer, that medal belongs to the Washington Monument in, er………………Washington.

There are lots of great stories attached to the building of the monument but I think my favourite has to be the poor butler who allegedly managed to get himself sealed up inside the plinth. The story goes he slipped inside with lots of dirty crockery after an al fresco opening party and nobody noticed he was inside when they laid the final few blocks to seal up the entire structure. The poor guy wasn’t noticed missing for a few days. I wonder did he stash any food inside on the sly.

See ya soon.

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

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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. 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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