An Early Rise and Natural Highs / by Adam Karnacz

I travel to Blea Tarn to capture a magnificent sunrise and make the most of the stunning Lake District morning, with a short mountain hike, in this landscape photography vlog. 

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More than before

Over the past two years I have shot a lot of landscape photography, more than ever before in a short space of time. I recently printed out a 4x6 print of one image from each of the vlogs I have shot this year. It filled my wall and it is a body of work I am extremely proud of, especially with a film to accompany each one. I have learned a lot and it has been a thrilling experience.

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Landscape photography wellbeing

One of the biggest things that has struck me is the enormous sense of wellbeing that is generated when I go out shooting. This week was a particular example of that. I spent Thursday in the Lake District running a workshop and did not get back to my hotel until about 8pm. I was joined laterby my good friend and photographer Lyle McCalmont. We enjoyed a well earned couple of drinks before heading to bed. There was little rest though. We were up again for 5am to get over to Blea Tarn for some sunrise photography. When I arrived I was feeling a bit low. Tired, frustrated by the drive and not particularly ready for it. Even when the incredible pink sky appeared above Blea Tarn and the distant Langdale Pikes I felt underwhelmed even as other photographers who were present were whooping and cracking out high fives.

Blea Tarn, Lake District, UK

Blea Tarn, Lake District, UK

More than the art

For me it has become about so much more than the simple art of capturing an image. The morning progressed and we hiked up a small mountain as the rising sun began to lash the crags around us. We had fun getting a couple more images before nailing some footage for the video. We eventually made it to the top for the breathtaking 360 degree views. The feeling of elation and joy was palpable. The exercise, the effort, the hard work and the challenge are all part of what provide the sense of achievement and wellbeing. 

Blea Tarn-2.jpg

Well earned memories

Part of the drive is to produce images that others don't have. The Blea Tarn shot, whilst a perfectly good shot, felt too easy. The spot was about 1 minute walk from the car and the other photographers present were all capturing very similar images. Hiking up immediately puts you in territory that most people are not willing to venture into. It creates a much better opportunity for finding unique and interesting compositions. I do not purposely try to make things more difficult but the lasting memories and feeling of success is much greater when I have had to work for it.

Isle of Mull

Isle of Mull

The next chapter

Looking at my wall of 4x6 images now, brings back rich and vivid memories of each experience. There is a story behind each one that makes me feel happy and proud every time I look at them. I can not wait to create the next one.