Saturday, 11 February 2017

Ludworth Tower - After Midnight

And it's more Astrophotography on a freezing cold, blustery night in County Durham. I finished work at 11.20pm and drove to Spider Towers to pick my brother up. We were heading over to Ludworth Tower - a fifteen minute drive from Gilley Law, Sunderland. The plan - to photograph Ludworth Tower under the stars. Aye it was well chilly, but we were well layered and prepared for a couple of hours out in the sticks. The beauty about this location, especially in sub zero temperature, is the privilege of sitting in the car as the camera works its magic. I dropped anchor at the kissing gate, where access to the tower is at hand. From there it's literally a 10 second walk to the tower. Once in position we set up our camera's and walked back to the car. We sat there for an hour or so, listening to the radio and keeping out of the cold. There's not too many locations where you're afforded that basic luxury when photographing the stars, but this was definitely one of them.

Ludworth is a pit village in County Durham, England situated between Durham and Peterlee. It consists of just over 350 houses in three main housing estates (Barnard Avenue, Moor Crescent and Springfield Meadows) and a few smaller streets. Ludworth has one post office, a school, a community centre and a printers. The village used to have two churches and a fish shop, most of which were destroyed in a fire. The public house of Ludworth has been closed for some years.
Ludworth Tower was originally a medieval manor house, founded by the de Ludworth family. In 1422, Thomas Holden added a rectangular pele tower, when he was granted licence to crenellate his manorial complex, by Cardinal Langley. The only surviving remains are the barrel-vaulted basement, the three storey west wall and fragments of a first floor spiral stair in the south wall. The remains can be seen located on the left as you are coming into the village from Shadforth.

As well as running off a start trail sequence I finished off with a single exposure of my brother Chris, standing on the ancient arch next to the tower. Here is both shots from that night ...

Cheers, AC

Friday, 3 February 2017

A Nice Surprise!

Hello again,

Occasionally I send the odd photo to Tyne-Tees Television, in the hope they will show it on the daily weather bulletins. Over the last few years I've had quite a bit of success in this area and I continue to have my work shown on TV today. If you CLICK HERE you will find my archive weather photo collection, which features video clips of my photographs that have been shown on TV.

Yesterday I received an email from Ross Hutchinson, one of the weather presenters on Tyne-Tees Television. He told me he had been contacted by someone who had seen one of my photographs on his weather bulletin and they wanted a copy of it. An elderly couple, currently living in Yorkshire, they had gone to the trouble of hand writing a letter to him as they don't use email, before visiting the post office to send the letter on its way. I was quite touched by this and arranged for a print to be forwarded to them, free of charge, with the help of Ross. Great stuff and nice to see my work being appreciated, even if it sometimes flashes up on the TV for a couple of seconds.

Here is the actual correspondence, including the hand written letter ...

Cheers, Ash

Hello Ashley,

Odd question but I've had a lovely letter from an elderly couple in Yorkshire, attached- they liked this photo so much they wanted a copy!
Their request is for your address or phone number so they can try and organise this (they don't have email for a digital copy). 

I know it's a bit weird but shows how well liked your pics are! If you are happy to give them a copy but would rather not give out your details I'm sure I can arrange for us to get one printed (with your permission)

Completely up to you - but thought I would pass on the kind words/request.

Thanks for all the pictures!


Thursday, 2 February 2017

Let's Have Some Aerial Video

For all fans of aerial video, I've got a few of my own creations to share with you all. It was only a few months ago when I bought my drone - a DJI Phantom 3 Advanced, so I still feel very much a rookie, despite the fact I've got a few flights under my belt since August 2016. My interests in this area lie in the landscape of North-East England, the patch where I practise my still photography from week to week. Check out my youtube channel, where you'll find the story so far.

I've got plenty more footage to get through, so stay tuned for news of that, coming soon to my blog page. In the meantime, here is the link to my youtube channel. Play the video's in HD, with sound. Enjoy ...