Photography in the Freezing Forest! Epping, Essex.

The year both began and ended with a huge dump of snow! Well, I say huge – it was about 4-6 inches around here, which, as many of my friends from overseas tell me, is pathetic. But in true English fashion everything comes to a halt as soon as the first few flakes begin to fall. I was telling a Russian colleague that the kids had got a few days off school and he commented (drily) that in Moscow they only shut the scholls when the temperature gets to -30 degrees centigrade. Mmmm, that puts it into perspective…

Fresh Snow Fall

OK, so -30 is real weather. But even so, a few inches of snow makes Epping Forest look magical! So these are some of the pics I took back in Jan 2010 just a mile from the house at the nearest lake in the Forest. I love the way the snow seems to make everything quite abstract, and I think the black and white helps emphasise that.

Reeds with their feet in the ice

In an odd way the snow seems to make it easier to photograph the Forest. In the full riot of Spring and Summer it gets difficult to see what to focus on, too much going on, the Forest all crowding in upon itself. In Winter, especially with the snow, the sightlines seem reduced, the views become foreshortened, and its easier to pick out a point of focus. Like the tufts of snow collecting at the base of the reeds.

Here’s the overview of the lake. Very hidden and secretive, although it’s only 20 yards from the main road, it’s a lovely spot. ‘Foresty’. And in the depths of winter, it feels isolated and unchanged for ever. A good place to focus the camera lens.

The Wintry Lake


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