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  #1  
Old 7th September 2009
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Zuiko Zuiko is offline
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Wales meet - well worth the journey

Thanks to John and Andy for organizing a fantastic day, and thaks to everyone else who attended to provide some great company.

There's been so many superb pictures from the day posted already that I'm almost too embarrassed to show mine, but I travelled a long way to get there so here goes....

The obliglatory view from the top of Raglan Castle. Ian kindly lent me an 11-22mm lens for the day as it's one of the options I've been considering. It's a lovely lens, but trying it has confirmed that it isn't quite wide enough (for me) to justify adding it to my 14-54mm. So, when I can afford it, it looks like a 9-18mm (unless Santa can be persuaded to give me a 7 -14mm)!

I quite liked this composition with the 11-14mm, although nowhere near as dramatic as some of those 7-14mm and 8mm fish-eye images some of you guys have been posting!

This was my attempt at recording the lovely light and tones in some of the castle passages.

I always try to look out for something a bit different and this little flower, thriving against the odds in the castle stone work, caught my eye.

Usk Castle was on a much smaller scale than Raglan, but still packed with interesting details and features.

This doorway, seemingly unused judging by the amount of undergrowth in front of it, appealed to me - even though I did have to stand in a rubbish tip to get the shot!

Nick Temple-Fry, no doubt looking for some minute creepy crawly to photograph.

I just couldn't get it together at Cwmyoy Church - too many people around! However, this row of ancient head stones appealed to me. It was facinating just to look around the church - many thanks to Andy and John for comming up with such splendid locations.

Llantony Abbey was our last stop of the day and I spotted these wild flowers growing amongst the ruins right next to the car park.

By now the light was gone and care was needed to exclude the lifeless grey sky, a landscape photographer's nightmare. It was almost impossible to take a shot without anyone venturing into the scene, so I must admit that I returned early the next morning, in identical conditions (but without the people) to take this picture, plus those following.

I loved the angles and geometry of these old ruins.

The many spendid arches of the old abbey make ideal frames for creating scenes within a scene.

The sheer spendor of these ancient arches help give some sense of the magnificence of this incredible building in it's prime. I find the soft light of a dull day is actually beneficial to this type of image, allowing all the rich details to emerge without harsh shadows to obscure them.

Out in the car park stood another ancient monument! This old Land Rover was nearly as dilapidated as the Abbey and, although nowhere near as old, could probably tell nearly as many tales if only it could talk!

Another view of the old vehicle, I just cannot resist this type of subject!

You may wonder how I managed to return the next day. Well, I wasn't going to drive over 200 miles just for one day, so I camped at a site within a hundred yards of the Abbey and spent the whole of Sunday taking pictures, too. More of that later.
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Old 7th September 2009
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Re: Wales meet - well worth the journey

John - these are wonderful images, and provide a superb record of the day.

It was a real pleasure to meet you, I mean that. It's taken us a few years, but we got there in the end eh! I am honoured you took the trouble to travel all the way to South Wales for this meet, thanks so much for doing this.

I am looking forward to seeing what other shots you managed during your second day in South Wales.
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Old 7th September 2009
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Re: Wales meet - well worth the journey

Some lovely shots John - although there is one I have a few reservations about on an aesthetic level , maybe you classified the subject as an ancient monument.

Very impressed with what you pulled out of the abbey - I'm afraid by the time we got there I was out of ideas, still that's the value of a nights sleep.

Great to meet you at last

Nick
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Old 7th September 2009
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Re: Wales meet - well worth the journey

This is a really great collection of photos with marvellous subject matter to offer. Wish I lived closer!!
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Old 8th September 2009
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Re: Wales meet - well worth the journey

John

All very good but the pictures of the abbey are very very good.

Well captured.
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Old 8th September 2009
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Smile Re: Wales meet - well worth the journey

A great set of pictures John!
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Old 8th September 2009
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Re: Wales meet - well worth the journey

Glad you liked it

Nice picture set. Your point on overcast days is well made - all My pictures of Llantony have hard shadows as I didn't take any on the day ( I was too tired by that point of the day and enjoying talking to people ). I shall endeavour to be more positive when the sun's not shining

And of course now I know what you were doing in the compost heap

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