I’ve been lucky enough to attend the preview of Pitlochry’s Enchanted Forest for the last three years. I was fascinated when the spacemen came in 2008, then ghosts and a fire-breathing dragon took over in 2009 but it was always the autumn trees wrapped in colour that really did it for me.
So I was ridiculously happy at last night’s launch to find the clever forest folk have gone back to basics for 2010′s ‘Force of Nature’ spectacle. This year the trees are the stars of the show.
Taking photos of The Enchanted Forest can be quite a challenge but, weirdly, it’s one of the most relaxing challenges I meet all year. I’m used to shooting live gigs (first three songs, no flash, musicians jumping about the stage, often with a microphone and a shadow hiding their chin) so I’m completely comfortable with capturing light on dark. And I’ve yet to meet a pop star as pretty as Faskally Wood.*
There’s music too. Nothing loud or jarring, I wasn’t always sure where the backing track stopped and the natural ambient sound began.
There were times last night I was kicking myself for deciding against taking my tripod; I had to add a thermal vest, leg warmers and a bunnet to my attire; I chose the ability to operate the camera over the warmth of gloves; and my cold, wee, broad feet took a while to thaw out on the two hour drive home. But we were actually incredibly lucky – there wasn’t a spot of rain, darkness fell quickly and the loch offered perfect reflections. This may amaze those of you who know me but I actually put my camera down every now and then, just to take in the scenery first-hand.
Anyway, is it cool to say I love my own photos? Ach well, I do. I love lights and reflections and nature so The Enchanted Forest is a real treat. These pictures are just a taster of what I shot last night. You’ll find many more photos on Flickr and I may post a few more soon.