Melvin Nicholson “Landscape Locations” 29th November 2017

Melvin Nicholson LRPS,  a professional landscape photographer from Preston, Lancashire gave an excellent talk on “Landscape Locations” to Keswick Photographic Society.

From the beginning it was clear he was dedicated to his job and had worked tirelessly to find the best locations with advantageous positions providing the perfect light. This not only involves planning but an ability to get up very early in the mornings and to stay up late at night in order to achieve the fantastic images he displayed.

Melvin’s photographic journey started on the west coast of England close to his own home.  He showed images of the wooden jetty at Lytham as the tide just begins to be level with the boards.  The most symmetrical pattern was seen underneath the central pier at Blackpool which provided the best image of a smooth sea, created by a long exposure using a 6 stop filter.

Together with mouthwatering photographs of Mary’s shell and the Ogre in Cleveleys, the audience enjoyed seeing fishing wrecks at Fleetwood, Castles of Bamburgh, Lindisfarne and Dunstanburgh in Northumberland, the Inner Farne Islands, Saddle rock, a sunrise in Seahouses and a beautiful rainbow over Embleton Bay,

His next set of images were from the Lake District including the iconic pine trees and the lone tree on Buttermere.

Melvin gave a kaleidoscope selection of the best places providing the best chance of good images.  He explained the importance of being out in bad weather when the shifting light alters the atmosphere of the same location without moving one’s tripod.   Examples were the Langdale Pikes, Blea Tarn, Holme Fell, Monk Pier Coniston and Martindale at the base of Hallin Fell.   He admitted that he found Castle Rigg Stone Circle one of the most difficult places to photograph to obtain a decent picture.  Other locations such as Scale Force Falls, Slater’s Bridge, Cathedral Cavern and Hodge Close offer different opportunities.

After a series of photographs in Dorset and a number of places along the Jurassic Coast, the journey then travelled away from the South of England into Scotland via Glencoe and Rannoch Moor to the Hebridean Islands of Harris, Lewis and Skye. The variable weather highlighted rainbows and fogbows which necessitated the use of a shower cap to protect the camera and a lens polariser filter to enhance the rainbows. Amongst the notable places were Talisker Bay on Skye displaying black sands at low tide, Old Man of Storr, the Fairie Pools and Stach Pollaidh.

Across the sea to Ireland to enjoy views of Melmore Head, The Church of the Sacred Heart and the Cliffs of Moher and finally voyaging further afield to Iceland.  Here the ice caves, beached icebergs and the waterfalls at Skogafoss and Seljalandfoss were amazing but the black Church at Budir stole the show being lit from the inside by torches and encircled by the Aurora Borealis.

In summary, one needs to be at the right location to take advantage of the atmospheric light which gives the best chance of replicating what Keswick photographic society witnessed on a very entertaining and inspiring evening.

More of Melvin’s images can be seen in the galleries on his website at

We reach the winter break with a Christmas Dinner on 13th December. The next meeting is on 3rd January 2018 when John Gravett ARPS will be the guest speaker. Meetings take place at The Friends Meeting House, Elliott Park, Keswick, CA12 5NZ on Wednesday evenings at 7.30pm. Visitors and guests are welcome.