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I was recently asked by the RPS Landscape Group to write a report about a landscape photgraphy workshop I recently attended in Norfolk.  This was recently published in the RPS Landscape Group Newsletter and I have been asked to publish my report her so that non RPS members can read it.  Here goes!

I have been fortunate enough to attend a previous workshop run by Justin which I both thoroughly enjoyed and found to be of great benefit in helping me to improve my own landscape photography.

This Norfolk Broads & Coast workshop started at 5:00am on “The Staithe at Thurne” which meant I had to set off from my Surrey home around midnight!  The effort was well worthwhile although I did question my sanity at the time!

There were six of us on the workshop plus Jason himself and we started by walking out from the Car Park past the many moored boats to the Thurne Mill or “Wind Pump”.   It was still pitch black at this point so a headtorch was needed to navigate our way safely to the Mill.

Despite very hot weather recently there was a heavy dew and we had hoped for a nice misty start to the morning to give us nice soft light.  There was a little mist but nothing of note.  We looked at various shooting locations and decided to use the small rowing boats as foreground interest for our initial shots.  Justin offered advice on the best settings for the shot and was on hand to help out as needed – as he was all day.

Pre-dawn there was a nice light with reasonable colour in the sky (see header image above).  Sunrise itself was a bit of a non-event, as it often is, so we made our way to the other side of the Broad to take further images of the Mill with different foreground interest.

Thurne Mill, Norfolk

Image: Thurne Mill

By this time daylight was upon us and the light it gave us was absolutely stunning!  Beautiful soft light highlighting the lingering light mist over the water.  There was a good amount of birdlife present and Justin advised that on a previous visit he had seen Otters in the Broad.  No such luck today however but the very vocal Mallards made their presence known.

We then drove a few miles to our second location, Turf Fen Mill which is on the River Ant.  This is an idyllic location but, according to the locals amongst us, is much better in the Winter months when all the river boats have gone.  Nonetheless the River provided excellent reflections and the light remained good.

The Mill itself was very photogenic and the reflections were good as long as a boat didn’t come through creating ripples in the beautiful still water.

River Ant Reflection by Chris Griffin

Image Above: River Ant Reflection

Image Below: Turf Fen Wind Pump

Turf Fen Wind Pump Reflection by Chris Griffin

We then retired for refreshments at a local restaurant which Justin had recommended and bacon sandwiches were enjoyed by all.

Our last location was scheduled to be a long-exposure session at Happisburgh Beach.  By the time we arrived there the temperatures were in the mid to high 20’s and of course, it being a Sunday the beach and car parks were full of people enjoying a day at the seaside.  We were unable to park because of the crowd so we moved a little down the coast to Cart Gap.

Cart Gap was still quite busy but we all managed to park.  We made our way to the beach and walked back towards Happisburgh looking at long exposure opportunities along the way.  We found several sea defences near Cart Gap and we were all quite grateful we did not have to walk all the way back to Happisburgh in the stifling heat.

Sea Defences at Cart Gap, Norfolk by Chris Griffin

Image: Sea Defences at Cart Gap, Norfolk.

Justin was on hand to suggest compositions and camera setting and a good day was enjoyed by all present.  I can fully recommend attending one of Justin’s workshops.  They are relaxed, informative and fun!

Chris Griffin

Header Image: Wind Pump at Thurne, Norfolk, Pre-Dawn.

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