Friday, May 29, 2009

Photo Courses and Workshop in July

For those of you who want to learn about the heritage of Church Island in Lough Currane and take part in a two day photo workshop at the same time, join us in Waterville, Co. Kerry on July, 4&5th.

Two one week courses will take place in the O´Connell Centre in Caherciveen, landscape photography and digital editing for beginners and advanced, check out dates,times and prices.

All are welcome.

The Blowing Hole, Caherciveen

Just a few miles north of Caherciveen, over the bridge and "Over the Water" as the locals call it, is one of the many exciting cliff features in the area, no doubt formed by the pounding waves of Dingle Bay and the wind which doesn´t seem to stop these days. To go near the Blowing Hole is not for the faint hearted, so if you are going to attempt it do so with utmost care.
Less spectacular but even more beautiful are the details in the Old Red Sandstone which you find everywhere without any big danger, and sprayed by rain or other water they sparkle like any precious stone.

Want to read a short introduction on the Geology of Kerry ?

Friday, May 22, 2009

Michael Kirby, a truly Great Man and Artist from Ballinskelligs

If there ever was a man who inspired me learning about and going to the Skelligs
it was Michael Kirby, or Micheál Ua Ciarmhaic, as he was called in his native Gaeltacht of Baile an Sceilg, Ballinskelligs.
I was thinking of him a lot before and after being on Skellig Michael for a few days recently and I reread the three books he wrote in the English language, a further eight were written in Irish.
He was born on 31 May in 1906 and he lived to be almost a hundred years when he died in April 2005, and what a rich live it was. Like his ancestors and family he became a small farmer and fisherman, who learned all about the abundant marine and natural life in and around the shores of Ballinskelligs Bay at the edge of the Atlantic Sea.
Especially in his book Skelligs Calling, published 2003, he shares with us his observations of nature as he reflects fishing, the weather, bird life and more natural history of the region, his “Latin being Irish” as he also was a great and scholarly Irish speaker.
In his first book written in English, Skelligside which was published in 1990, Michael Kirby pictures rural life in Ballinskelligs in the first half of the 20th century, with personal and local memories about nature, localities, customs and he interweaves his story telling with poetry and facts.
The third book in English, Skelligs Sunset, was published posthumous in 2006, he had written this recollection of his childhood, poems and essays for the last five years prior to his death with a view to publishing a third volume in the Skelligs Trilogy.
To witness the wonders and simple joys of life, Michael Kirby lived and worked, wrote his books and poetry, shared his knowledge and observations and was a true philosophical mind of the last century.
And last but not least the man started painting beautiful pictures in his seventies with the beauty of nature his subject. We are very glad he let us choose this wonderful oil painting of Skellig Michael which has pride of place in our house.

His books are available at Lilliputpress

  • Skelligside, 1990,
all published by Lilliput press,

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Some beautiful music

Elbow, a band from Manchester, recorded their album The Seldom Seen Kid at the Abbey Road Studios together with the BBC Orchestra and a Choir and I really like the song Starlings, have a listen...
and more about photography tomorrow...

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Derrynane House and National Historic Park

One of the great attractions at any time of the year but especially after a few dreary weeks in Spring is the National Historic Park in Derrynane near Caherdaniel on the Ring of Kerry. Every plant in the park has burst into life regardless of the cold and wind we had to endure for the past couple of weeks...only the rain probably helped...
Birds and insects are in overdrive, the flowers of indigenous and exotic plants cast a magic spell on every living creature.
Within the park the small but stately home of Daniel O´Connell, Derrynane House, is now a museum well worth visiting. Read more about its History and Daniel O´Connell here.

Nearby at one of Ireland´s most beautiful beaches are the remains of an old Abbey and graveyard.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

The Skelligs Region

Recently I found this great way to publish photos in a book on the internet with, it was a bit tricky to find my way around it, but it´s quite easy now, really...
See my book on The Skelligs Region with ideas for taking images within a few miles from where I live.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

The Lighthouses on Skellig Michael

I was very privileged to be on Skellig Michael and to be allowed to take pictures of the lighthouses and the Island.
Read about the history of the Skellig lighthouses on.the Commissioners of Irish Light´s Website.....
There are more pictures to come, so watch out.

The upper lighthouse, abandoned in 1870

Friday, May 01, 2009

Tide Prediction Application for iPhone or iPod Touch

I recently came across this very helpful application for my iPod touch.
To take pictures near the sea it is always important to know the tides. For example if you want to take pictures of under-water-mark features along a beach or cliff and for capturing water movement with a long shutter speed, it is vital to know when and how fast and high the water is coming in on you and your tripod and other gear.
Bryan Aamot of Brainware has written this application from scratch especially for the iPhone and iPod Touch. It is an entirely self contained tide prediction application that you can use anywhere in the world.
  • Contains 1 year worth of tide predictions
  • No Internet Connection Required
  • 7 day tide graph based on the current time
  • Built in map for easy port selection
  • Detailed high/low tide event list
  • Sun / Moon graph with moon phases
  • Choose between meters or feet
  • Uses GPS or other location services when available.

You can buy it for the very reasonable price of.3.99€ at the i Tunes Store.
More information and some Q &A are on Bryan´s website