Cliveden

Project 52: Week 24

Cliveden

I am well and truly back at school and the homework has started and free time has shrunk. It’s difficult to find time for photos in the week and the poor weather this week made taking photos outside even harder.

I am not the greatest fan of visiting National Trust properties but I agreed to go to Cliveden with my mum and dad today. We used to go there when I was much younger and we were members of the National Trust. There was a particular reason why I liked Cliveden. Cars! The house itself is now a posh hotel. When I was small I loved cars (and before that trains). So my favourite bit of visiting Cliveden was to look at the posh cars parked outside the hotel. You could always find a selection of Bentleys and Aston Martins, occasionally a Ferrari and the odd Maserati. Porches were dead common and not worth looking at. Today wasn’t that great. Only one Aston, a red Ferrari (did you know the original colour was yellow!) and a grey Bentley.

Anyway, as you can see I did not photograph a single car. I remembered that there was a fountain at the end of the drive leading to the hotel. The weather today was very dull so I thought that I would end up taking a black and white photo. I also wanted to blur the water. To do this I needed a very slow shutter speed. So I borrowed my dad’s tripod and a special filter he has (called a neutral density filter) which hugely slows the shutter speed. My dad showed me how to lock the focus of the fountain. I made a note of what the shutter speed was for a good photo. Then I attached the filter. To get the right shutter speed I put the camera in ‘bulb’ mode. Again this was something I hadn’t done before. As the filter slowed the shutter speed by a factor of 1000 I had to make the exposure 1000 times longer with the filter on. In this case it was around 35 seconds. I brought a calculator with me. I used my dad’s remote trigger instead of pressing the trigger. This was to make sure the camera wasn’t jogged during the exposure time.

I actually took three photos of the fountain. It takes a while as after you have taken the photo you have to wait the same amount of time for it to process. I really like the effect of a long exposure and will definitely try it again if I come across a scene which suits it.

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