On my walk into Thomas Parker House the other day I spotted a flyer for a photography competition- the only condition being that the photograph entered had to be taken in one of Lincoln’s nature parks. Feeling up for a challenge myself and Mat boarded a bus after our meeting with the external moderators this morning and made our way to Whisby Nature Reserve. It was actually the first time I’d used the bus service at all in Lincoln despite having lived here for almost three years now!
One of the first things that struck me when we started our walk was the amount of damsel and dragon flies that there were! Before I moved to Lincoln I’d never even seen one, but suddenly there were dozens of then around me! They’re quite beautiful, especially to see rising and falling all around you, even if they dislike staying still enough to be photographed. I think my choice of purple tights didn’t help either as insects are drawn away from blue colours (just one random fact I’ve picked up during my time at uni!)
We tried to walk as far around all the walks as we could, but they were pretty confusing! Half of the turnings didn’t seem to have signs and the marked trials didn’t all meet up so we couldn’t just do one large one. There were so many lovely long winding paths though, and with the sun shining down on them it just made all that walking seem so much easier! We did manage at least 5-6 miles though, and I have a lovely sunburn to go with that.
A lovely hidden bridge I spotted around the walk. It just looks beautiful hidden within the huge amount of green around it.
This tree stump was interesting enough already, it became even more interesting as I approached it though as the cut out section looks just like a butterfly. It’s like nature has made it’s own sculptures.
On the subject of nature’s own sculptures, this tree fascinated me. At the end of spring/start of summer it was completely bare and stood out quite a bit against all the green that was around it. I took quite a few snaps of this as I’d like to use it to practice drawing trees in the future, they’re something that I have always struggled with and I’d like to improve.
Walking through all of these trees was great, it just helped me to get away from the hustle and bustle of living in a city, we hardly saw anybody all day except for a few families and a couple who appeared to be rather drugged up. Unfortunately I made the mistake of stopping when they started to talk to us (I’m far too polite and fear for my camera only kicked in afterwards). It was worth it though as we were rewarded with a rather slurred anecdote (complete with mime act) of how a bull had escaped and the guy had pushed him back into his field. We did spot a bull hidden behind a few ‘DANGER: BULL’ signs later on, but there was a bridge and a railway track between that field and the drugged up couple, so unless he was an extremely smart bull I’m a little dubious about the story!
I was quite intrigued when I first spotted these overhead cables, I thought that they were filled with birds. On closer inspection they appear to be bird shaped pieces of metal, but since they fooled me I guess they’ll fool the birds as well. They were only along this one stretch of cable however, which was quite confusing.
This nice calming walk hadn’t taken away my sense of playfulness and fun, and I had a good giggle to myself when I spotted this rather sad looking tree man reaching into the ditch below him I couldn’t help but giggle.
I’m pretty terrified of bees and wasps and Mat was in stitches half of the day as I twitched, jumped, lept, squeaked, squealed and ran away from anything that buzzed near me. I did manage to get some great close up shots of one among some large daisies however, and I didn’t squeak once!
So what about my original intention then, did I manage to get the photograph that I had set out for? Well here are a few of the ones that I had to pick from out of the 200+ that I shot over the day.
The two I eventually went for (one for myself to enter, and one for Mat to enter as he’s spent the day traipsing around being the lens swapping man) were the following.
Now I just need to get some frames and get them printed and to the competition for Sunday! They’ll be exhibited next week (I need to find out where, I would guess at Whisby itself) and then judged for a chance to be used for a nature calendar for the area next year. I really hope that I get a place but if not I’m just happy I managed to have an awesome day out in the sun, completely stress free, and managed to snap so many great photographs.