Road Trip

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Road Trip

During early February, I had an old friend visit me from the states after his 3 week gruelling cycling tour from Malin Head in Donegal to Mizen Head in Cork. As his route never managed to successfully see any more of Kerry than some of Killarney National Park, he managed to ditch the bike for a few days and head out with me on a road trip around the ring of Kerry.

First stop was Torc Waterfall and the surrounding woodlands which offer a great view out over Killarney National Park. With the weather so frequently changeable in Ireland, bright blue skies change to misty bands of rain in a matter of minutes.

The best and worst thing about the Ring of Kerry is the amazing scenery all along the coast line, stunning to look at, but you'll find yourself pulling over every 5 minutes!

We managed to take a little stop at Derrynane Beach and as it was really windy and cloudy, the sky was changing at a great rate which opened up into some beautiful sunset light.

Back when I was in college, I hadn't realised that I shared classes with another islander until my final year. Brian was from Valencia Island and towards the end of college we built up a friendly rivalry. We decided to head out to Valencia as he gave us some recommended viewpoints since he couldn't be there personally to show us. The island is connected via bridge (so, not a real island 😜) but we took a short hike around some of the coastline to some spectacular views.

The views back towards the mainland are stunning. With sea spray and high winds adding a magical atmosphere to the headland.

Having gained further international attention from a certain space themed film, we managed to finally see the Skellig Islands. The UNESCO world heritage site is clearly visible from Valencia and with the weather changing again quickly, a big band of cloud would rise over them.

We continued on towards Rossbeigh Beach. Another beautiful spot on the northern coastline of the Ring of Kerry.

Our final stint back to Cork led us through the Gap of Dunloe. Being from an island, I am used to it being fairly remote and undeveloped, with all the ruggedness that the wild Atlantic Ocean throws at it. However, venturing through the Gap of Dunloe makes one feel like they have stepped back in time into an ancient land  from mythological tales. I genuinely wouldn't have been surprised if a leprechaun jumped out behind a rock! 

The road trip was a great excuse to see another part of the country that I had only seen a snippet of, despite going to college in Kerry for 4 years! I have recently been working on a film out in Allihies which lies on the Ring of Beara, and although I didn't have my camera with me, I will have to take a separate road trip out that way. From what I saw while working around that region for the week, I might even say it's more stunning than Kerry...hard to believe!

Here's to more good memories, Brett. We'll do it again in the future. πŸ‘Š

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Home Tour

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Home Tour

Carla Benedetti

Last week I made the journey to Dublin to photograph the home of interior designer, Carla Benedetti, for publication at MintMag.ie. The house had been up for nomination for the RTΓ‰ television programme; Home of the Year and was situated in the leafy suburb of Sandymount.

Vintage Bathtub

Carla's home went through a massive redesign and is peppered with a combination of modern and vintage elements that flow throughout her home. The bathroom is the perfect combination containing this beautiful bathtub which sits on the clean white tiles that bounces lots of natural light within the room.

The stunning kitchen area features full floor to ceiling windows that flood light into this new extension space. The kitchen is entirely open plan and leads directly into the living room space that encompasses a vintage leather chesterfield foot rest and rustic cabinets to compliment the modern colour tones.

The dark inky tones of the redesign contrast with the light filled spaces and give a contrasty pop to the spaces within her home. The ensuite bathroom pops with colour with the bright white and turquoise tiling, while the inky blue hues in the hallway are complimented by the warm wooden tones of the stairwell to the 1st floor.

We had our very own miniature tour guide of the day Benjamin, who was vying for my attention and as I wrapped up shooting, he got his own little portrait taken in the living room.

Puppy

If you would like to check out more of Carla's interior design work, you can head over to her site here.

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Night Lights

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Night Lights

On a recent visit home to Clare Island after a long stretch away, I finally got some time to put together new Astrophotography landscapes. Below, you can see the road to the north of the island facing towards Achill Sound with the bright light being the lighthouse on the most northern point on the island. The second faces out towards Croagh Patrick worth the lights of Westport and Louisburgh shining either side of this famous mountain.

I'm very lucky to be from a place with little to no light pollution, so getting the opportunity to photograph the stars comes only as often as the Irish weather allows!
I had been out photographing some of the landscape in the late afternoon but decided to stay out once the sun had set. After a beautiful mild Saturday, the evening stayed the same and with a clear night ahead with a new moon, it was the perfect chance to capture the stars.

Clare Island Lighthouse

The image above shows the lighthouse on the island beneath crystal clear skies. These few images below manage to capture both Knockmore (the island's locally known, big hill) and Orion's belt. It's strange to see the transition of colour even after the sun had set, from the blue hues of the lighthouse skies to the shades of indigo as the night sky darkens even further. We can be really lucky in the west of Ireland to see the stars so clearly, you've just got to pray to the weather God's to capture those beautiful sights!

If you liked these, you can find more images throughout my site featuring other landscape work.

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Roisin & Phil's Engagement Session

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Roisin & Phil's Engagement Session

PJ Rankin_Drop in the Ocean_Photography-83.jpg

Last weekend I made the journey up to Dublin to do my first engagement shoot of the year. Both Roisin and Phil are from Dublin and we decided to use the nearby Phoenix Park as a beautiful open space to capture their time together. Roisin and Phil also brought their adorable 4 year old daughter Mia, who bravely handled with the bitterly cold weather for mid March!

Roisin & Phil's Engagement

Phoenix Park is known as one of the largest one of the largest enclosed recreational spaces within any European capital city and that gave us plenty of room to make the engagement shoot as intimate as possible.

We spent a few hours wandering around various locations within the park, all with a very relaxed pace for shooting the images. As with anyone who has had a portrait session with me, I always allow time for everyone to get comfortable in front of the camera. It can be unnerving at first but I was happy to get some lovely shots of this young couple.

Engagement Ring
Great day today in the park!! Thank you so much can’t wait to see the outcome.. Roisin.

Both Roisin and Phil had intended to get married this year but had to postpone the wedding till next year. I think we can all forget how much planning can go into a wedding and it rapidly catch up on you! I had a great time photographing them both and their lovely daughter and I wish them all the best in their future together :) An engagement session is a memorable way of capturing intimate images of you and your partner without the pressure of your wedding day schedule. If you think you would appreciate an engagement session in a relaxed environment, why don't you contact me here and we can start to plan a memorable shoot together.

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Ruth

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Ruth

It's a new year and I'm delighted with how well my photography has been received over the past 12 months. As as I got to start off 2015 with this portrait session of the beautiful Ruth, here's a few samples from the session. Ruth was one of the principal dancers in the pantomime Sleeping Beauty, which played at the Cork Opera House over December & January 2014/15. We got to spend a few hours together capturing some fun shots :)

If any of you have been following my page over the past year, all my shoots have been on location and this one no different. The nice thing about Cork City, is its variety of areas that are all within walking distance of each other. From modern quays to beautiful grass spaces by the river there's a nice opportunity to capture a different persona at each location.

We were blessed with a crisp beautiful winters day and we decided to make the most of it, by spending a few hours at different locations around the city.

It was a pleasure working with Ruth on this shoot, an easy going and very down to earth person. She has now begun her new journey of taking up further dance training in New York over the next few months and I wish her the best of luck! For more info on portrait sessions contact me here. Thanks!

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Sunrise, Sunset

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Sunrise, Sunset

I have been pretty busy all over October, which has explained the fairly quiet activity I have had on my journal. Part of this was due to my involvement in the Clare Island Film Festival held over the 3rd - 5th October this year. Being part of the committee luckily gave me the chance to travel home and produce the event with the other committee members, as well as watch a great selection of up and coming Irish film. This year was the 2nd rendition and we were delighted that our turnout was double that of the first year. As part of the festival, we held a small photographic exhibition with the theme of "The West". This gave everyone the opportunity to showcase some of their photographic talents and I put a few of my own prints on display.


We received excellent feedback from some of the directors that attended and unfortunately for the weather affecting the boat times on the final day, the event was very successful. You can check out more details at the  which has more up to date information.

While at home, I took the opportunity to get out and capture more landscapes that I had not got around to for a while. A part of the island that I have not showcased in my work, were the cliffs by the lighthouse. No matter how many times I have been to this point of the island in my life, it always makes for a refreshing mini venture to absorb the breathtaking views of Achill and beyond. The lighthouse on Clare Island sits 300ft above the atlantic ocean with the waves crashing below. Recently renovated, it is now a private guesthouse that caters to those looking for a unique retreat, right on the edge of Western Europe. It is an incredible place to stay and those who book rooms are rewarded with amazing views. You can find out more here

I have always wanted to capture a sunrise rolling over the shoulder of Croagh Patrick, and thankfully I managed to grab this one below after numerous attempts. An icy cold October morning and getting up at 6am to make sure I was positioned in the right place, meant that I was rewarded with the warm colours making a silhouette of Ireland's holy mountain.

The final image below shows a tighter shot of Knockmore and Budawanny as warm sunlight sets over the mountain as it fades over the atlantic. For anyone taking a trip to the island, it is worth the scenic walk to take in the view and hear the ocean crash below. 

Most of these landscapes are now available to purchase in the store. As with any of my other work, if there is something you are interested in buying a copy of, please contact me here.

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Brides in the Forest

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Brides in the Forest

A few weeks ago, a few friends and I took a trip out to Gouganne Barra to take a look at this beautiful forest park, located in west Cork. We had planned to return there again with models to shoot some bridal environmental portraits, and only recently got the chance to do so. With us, we had three models; Cornelia, Eshana & Paulina, and a team of lovely individuals that helped ferry us around, hold reflectors and touch up hair and make up! We were lucky enough to have been given a selection of vintage style wedding dresses that we wanted to photograph in a beautiful location, and where better than Gougane Barra.

We were also accompanied by the incredibly well dressed Barney, a Jack Russell/Chihuahua breed who garnered all the attention of the photo shoot for the whole day. And who can blame them, he had his bow tie half undone as if he was ready to dance the night away at the reception! We wondered around numerous locations within the central part of the park and also shot around the tried and tested St Finbarr's Oratory.

The park offers so many beautiful secluded spots, that it is easy to take the time away to have photographs taken in a relaxed atmosphere. Some of my favourite images are below, particularly this black & white image of Cornelia as she dips her toes in the waters of the lake.

If you are interested in shooting wedding images or even engagement images similar to these, contact me to find out more as this truly is an amazing spot to capture you and your partners special moments.

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Ile de Groix

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Ile de Groix

Renault

Being part of a small island community has allowed me to get involved into numerous groups and projects over the years, such as summer Regatta's and Comhaltas Sessions (Read; Irish Music, international readers...). The most recent of which, is the Clare Island Film Festival, which we established last year. Still in it's infancy, we were honoured with having the programme director of the Festival International du Film Insulaire de Groix (Ile de Groix Film Festival) Sylvain Marmugi, attend last year's event . He ran a children's film workshop to enormous success to the festival audience as it was pieced together entirely by the children of Clare Island and edited by Sylvain in the space of a week. We are delighted to have him return again this year as he works with the children again and plans a short film of his own while here.

Bjorn

Ile de Groix is approximately the same size as Clare Island but with approximately 2000 inhabitants compared to our 150(ish). Now in it's 14th year, we were honoured to be brought over to showcase some Irish film at the event and the material we brought was exceptionally well received by the French audience. The entire festival has an incredibly laid back feel to it. With intimate screenings and plenty of live music held over the 5 days, there is plenty to keep you occupied. The island is very easy to get around with plenty of walking paths, coastal walks and electric bicycles to rent to see this stunning place. With crystal clear waters, we found the time to take a swim or two to wash away the previous evening's celebrations.

Our festival runs from the 3-5 October this year and we're lucky enough to have a dedicated team to put on what will hopefully be a great weekend for everyone that attends. To find out more information about the festival, you can head over to the Facebook page or take a look at more details on the official festival page. We have already accommodation going quickly so be sure to grab your spot! 

Lastly, I would really like to thank Sylvain for opening the opportunity to bring us to Groix as it was greatly appreciated. So much volunteering goes into this type of festivals and it is so rewarding when international exchanges like these occur. Another special thank you goes to Patrice, another volunteer of the festival, but whom looked after us with incredible generosity. 

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Gougane Barra

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Gougane Barra

A few weeks ago, some friends and I took a short trip out to Gougane Barra. Just about an hour's drive west of Cork city, this beautiful area is one of Ireland's National Parks and is definitely worth a trip if you're looking to get out of the city for a while. The location itself is home to a small iconic church called St Finbarr's oratory, which has been used for many wedding ceremonies, and what a perfect location to have them! 

With us all being photo nerds we hadn't even managed to get too far around the lake as we were consistently in awe of how beautiful the surroundings were, but we'll definitely be heading back soon. We managed to stroll around for a few hours and were lucky with the beautiful evening providing a great way to take a glimpse at how the area looks under interesting skies.

If you are looking to find out more information on this beautiful area, you can check out more official details over here.

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Fiona

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Fiona

Yesterday I managed to get out for a quick shoot with the lovely Fiona for the evening. The weather was promised to be good (during the week at least!) but on the day it was nicely grey and drizzly as is the typical Irish charm. Thankfully the sun gods spared us an hour during the evening up in Fitzgerald Park here in Cork. Every time I head out shooting I nearly come away with my 'new favourite' image but the above portrait of Fiona is miles ahead!

Fiona was great fun during the shoot and an absolute pleasure to work with, making my job a lot easier! She has done a considerable amount of modelling for Wavebreak media so if you recognise her, she's got a famous face! Sometimes people tend to only focus on the more publishable images of the direct poses or expressions but I love throwing in a few of the casual shots from a shoot to capture a bit of the model's personality and how fun they are :) 

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