Photography workshop on the Isle of Harris, November 2021
Another really successful photography workshop on the Isle of Harris has ended and I’d like to share with you some of the wonderful experiences I’ve been lucky enough to capture in five days on the Hebrides. I have been visiting and photographing the Isle of Harris for over twelve years now, but no two experiences are the same. Indeed each visit is made more precious by having the privilege of being able to introduce people to photographing the breathtakingly stunning landscape of these unique coastal spots. I’d like to share some of these remarkable moments from this photography workshop with you!
Part of what makes the experience so successful is the special way that the weather and light fall at each given location. My experience means that I am lucky enough to know all the locations that work well at certain times of day: the wind direction, the swell, so that I can get the group into the best possible location for photography on any give day.
The golden road & the South of Harris
We started our first day of the Isle of Harris photography workshop on the Northon Marshes as the sun rose; with low winds, the day broke gently as a rainbow bloomed overhead. Beginning by exploring Rodel Pier, we then drive round the Golden Road photographing some beautiful details: old, abandoned croft houses, nestled amongst the stillness and quietness, just the sheep and road that stretched out for miles without seeing a soul.
On reaching the beach, the weather had picked up as I had hoped and the wildness was a delightful contrast to the stillness of the morning, first at Luskentyre beach and then standing with our backs to the rain on Scarista. The weather was a constant stream of changeability, leaving us caught in rain and even hail storms although these passed through in minutes , leaving clear and empty skies. Often the best conditions can be found just before or after a passing storm.
Isle of Lewis photography dayIf the weather looks promising and everyone in the group is keen, I often run one day trip up to the Isle of Lewis. There is a wealth of opportunity for landscape and seascape photography on the Isle of Lewis. A beautiful morning was spent on Cliff beach, wandering along the beach, exploring peninsulas that led us to great vantage spots for photographing cliffs and expanses of beach. No trip to the Isle of Lewis is the same without a visit to the Callanish stones either! After a great, atmospheric afternoon at the standing stones we warmed up with freshly made pizza at Crust – an unusual and delicious experience – eating hot homemade pizza surrounded by desolate moorland and dramatic light.
Photographing the Northern Lights in Harris
One of our highlights was that the northern lights made an appearance on the Isle of Harris and allowed the group the opportunity to photograph them. The excitement built as James Kelly who was helping me on this trip spotted a northern lights alert for that night and got everyone out and ready to photograph at 9pm. After some camera prep and putting on as many layers as possible, we headed down to the beach where the northern lights were visible.
We split into two groups to photograph the Northern lights and the milky way. It can be tricky to set up to photograph night skies so I went round and helped everyone individually to make sure exposures and their focus was all set. After a couple of hours, we headed home as the clouds came over. Everyone managed o capture an image of the northern lights on the Isle of Harris which was an amazing opportunity and well-recieved experience.
You can watch the video below to get a flavour of what it feels like to take part in one of my Isle of Harris photography workshops. I have several coming up for 2022 so you look at my listings if you’d like to join me. You can also watch more videos on my YouTube channel here