We live in Surfer’s Heaven, here in West Wales. They come from all over the UK, attracted by the crashing surf and the fairly mellow temperatures of the Irish Sea. According to the National Trust website, if you leave Freshwater West, one of our most popular beaches, and head west, you’ll eventually hit Brazil. Weird, I thought you’d hit Ireland. However.
Freshwest has major riptides, you don’t swim there unless you know what you are doing. It’s a red flag beach, all year round. But great for surf. You can go there any day of the year, and see a troupe of VW campers, and neoprene-suited dudes. If you’re into that. Me, not so much. But it’s an awesome beach to walk, to watch the sun setting, to take photos. Which I did, yesterday evening. My camera (the D5100, which I hardly use, not the D80, which I use every week for the yarn photos) and I have come to an uneasy truce. It gives me great shots……. about ten percent of the time. Oh well. I just shoot more to compensate.
Can we talk lens flare? I am so into it, man! As you can see. You’d better like it, or you’re going to get bored around here. I know you can fake it in Photoshop, but that’s just plain wrong. I’ve seen it done badly (why don’t you just get out a giant yellow marker and draw in a big smiley sun?), and I’ve seen it done well, and I think somebody is missing the point. The magic of sun flare is that you are capturing on film (well, not really, but you know what I mean) something that is not only ephemeral, but essentially invisible. It’s awesome.
The Pembrokeshire coastline is stunning. Farmland edging right up the cliff edges, with sheep and cows grazing high above the crashing surf. Do they ever look out at the horizon, and think, somewhere out there is Brazil………… Well, probably not. Our coast is softer than the North Pembrokeshire coast, but it has its own charms. This beach is wild and dramatic, but just around the corner, in either direction, are soft cosy coves, that attract hordes of sunbathers in summer months. I much prefer this time of year. We only have to share one of our beaches with the surfers (they surf at more than one beach, of course, but tend to congregate where the surf report says is the best that day, so you learn to just avoid that beach then, unless you like to watch them, which is pretty dull work). There’s plenty of room for us all, and some left over for the gulls.
Oh, Pembrokeshire. Why did I ever leave you?