TOP 3 PHOTOGRAPHY LOCATIONS IN SCOTLAND
BY ANSKAR LENZEN
MEET ANSKAR LENZEN
My name is Anskar Lenzen and I am from Germany. Currently I study Wildlife Ecology & Wildlife Management in Vienna and on my social media platforms, I try to combine my knowledge for wildlife, nature and sustainability with my photography. Traveling is awesome but it has also a huge impact on our planet, which we should always be aware of. Through my Instagram account I try to raise awareness of things you can possibly do wrong while traveling and shooting as well as things you should do to lower your emission impact.
In January my girlfriend and I were road tripping through all of Scotland. In my opinion, winter is the best time to visit this beautiful country. The roads are empty, the tourists are gone and everything is cheaper (including the camper van!). Roughly our tour went from Edinburgh over Glen Coe to the Isle of Skye. On Skye we spent three nights and continued driving through the North West Highlands until we reached the east coast. Plenty to see, plenty to shoot. Read this blog to find out which three locations were my favourites to photograph at!
1. MV Dayspring Shipwreck in Corpach
Often the more unknown places are more teasing than the famous photography locations. The original plan was to shoot the Glenfinnan Viaduct on our way to the Eilean Donan Castle, which is well known from the Harry Potter movies. But we couldn’t make it in time (otherwise we would’ve missed the blue hour at the castle), thus we quickly examined our map trying to find a close-by spot. Eventually, it was a photography book of Scotland which led us to this beautiful old and rusty ship wreck, located in Corpach.
As I have never seen an image about this wreck on Instagram, I was excited to visit a photography location without being prejudiced. I didn’t have any picture or composition in mind so I could use my full creativity at this spot. In my opinion, this always bears the best results!
The wreck itself was built in 1975 and used as fishing vessel. After her last voyage she was moored to a pier in 2001 and ran aground in Corpach in 2011 due to a heavy storm. It has now become a “lost place” photography location with an interesting story behind it.
Photography tip: try to aim for a low perspective to avoid the houses in the background. The mountain Ben Nevis adds the perfect background to the composition!
2. Fairy Pools
The Fairy Pools are among the highlights on the Isle of Skye, and with good reason! On that specific day we didn’t really have great conditions in the morning, when hiking up to the famous Old Man of Storr. We had nearly no sight due to thick fog. When it brightened up on our way to the Fairy Pools, we got very excited. But to be honest we didn’t expect too much from the location and thought it would rather be a scenic hike through a fantastic landscape. But once we made it to the first waterfall we were absolutely overwhelmed by the beauty of this location.
The rocky landscape, the orange and black colours and the low hanging clouds made the atmosphere unforgettable and absolutely Scottish. We were utterly enchanted by this landscape resulting in an immediate change of plans of staying longer at the pools and skipping our sunset location.
And it was one of the best decisions we made on that trip! The further we hiked upstream the wilder and rawer the landscape would get. It would look spectacular, both from the ground and from the air.
After spending around two to three hours along the pools we headed back to the parking lot. And, as unpredictable and ever-changing Scotland is, a heavy rain soaked us on our way back to the car. But it was definitely worth it!
Photography tip: if you are into long exposures you can run riot here! Make sure to go down to the river every here and there (as long as it is safe!) to achieve a more unique angle.
3. Duncansby Head
I know that Scotland is all about highlands but put the coastline on your list if you have enough time! It has some spectacular cliffs and lighthouses to offer, which can easily keep pace with the raw landscape of the highlands. We spent the night in our camper van on the empty parking spot at the light house. Yet it was still a half hour hike to the Stacks of Duncansby, our spot for the sunrise. And what a sunrise it was! In fact, it was the only sunrise we had on our road trip trough Scotland. But that’s alright, because the moody clouds really fit into the Scottish landscapes and enable you to shoot during the day as well. My tip is to be at the stacks in time to shoot the sunrise and then work your way back to the lighthouse with some great and soft morning light at your back. .
Photography tip: try to aim for a scale at this spot, the stacks are huge and often they look rather small on pictures. But safety first!
WRITTEN BY ANSKAR LENZEN
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