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Islay: Lord of the Isles

By |2020-02-22T12:09:22+00:00February 11th, 2020|Categories: Featured Gallery, Portfolio Galleries|Tags: , , , , , , |



Islay: Lord of the Isles | Documentary and Landscape Photography

Islay is the southernmost island of the Inner Hebrides of Scotland with a rich history, diverse landscape and plenty of whisky distilleries. For over 400 years Islay was the centre for the Lordship of the Isles. At their height, the Lords of the Isles were the greatest landowners and most powerful lords in Britain after the Kings of England and Scotland.

The journey to Islay involves a long, but beautiful drive through the Highlands, followed by a fabulous (depending on the weather you get) 1 hr 45 minutes ferry trip from the terminal at Kennacraig. The route is a busy one with many visitors heading to Islay intent on experiencing the nine distilleries (more are in development) that offer tours and tastings. I wanted to experience a bit of everything… including the distilleries.

Lordship of the Isles

Historically Islay was at the centre of Hebrides life for centuries. The Lord of the isles were based at Finlaggan, a remote location set on an island where the Lord of the Isles ruled over vast territory that included most of Hebridean isles and even in later years included Ross. Successive Lords of the Isles fiercely asserted their independence from Scotland, acting as kings of their territories well into the 15th century.

By the 15th century James IV of Scotland. had decided that he want to take the lands, titles from John MacDonald II, the Lord of the Isles at that time. John had made an alliance with Edward IV, the king of England, in 1493. The Scottish crown finally decided to remove a thorn from its side. The title of Lord of the Isles was taken, along with ancestral lands and estates, as a royal title and is currently held by Prince Charles.

Finlaggan

The visit to Finlaggan came with a problem to overcome. Lots of water. The previous week before my visit had seen Islay get huge amounts of rain which had saturated the ground around Loch Finlaggan flooding the pathway down to the island. Definitely a job for some wellington boots. The only issue was I didn’t have any. I could either look at Finlaggan from a distance or get wet. Plan B then. Drastic measures which resulted in me wading out in my walking boots and jeans. Certainly not the first time I’ve got my feet wet for a photograph!

The images from Finlaggan are among my favourites from the trip. The location had a serenity to it along with the beautiful scenery and the historic importance of the site. As with many historic sites signs of modern life like the visitor centre and local farms are present. I made the decision to try and use the ruins to block out anything in the landscape that ‘ruined’ the ancient ‘atmosphere’ of Finlaggan.

The Whisky Island

While a wonderful landscape and rich Scottish history may appeal to some of us, arguably the biggest draw to the island is whisky with nine active distilleries receiving a huge number of tourists and whisky enthusiasts each year. Each distillery has its own character and every tour has its own unique experience. Tastings are particularly popular with each distillery providing different levels to suit entry-level through to the whisky connoisseur.

Visiting Jura

With a day remaining it was time to take a look at Jura. The tantalising close landscape of the small neighbouring island to Islay draws you in and fortunately there is a regular ferry service taking a surprising number of passengers back and forth. The waters between the island can run fast during tidal movements as the water rushes through the narrow channel.

Although Jura has a wonderful landscape to explore, another big pull to the island is the small whisky distillery that produces Jura whisky.

Related Galleries

The photographs in this gallery form part of the Scotland: Lowlands, Highlands and Islands project.

My 2015 Edinburgh photography called ‘The Two Towns’ can be found HERE

The Edinburgh: Seven Hills project can be found HERE

Photography Prints

If you would like to purchase a print then the Richard Flint Photography RedBubble store has a wide range of images available.

Framed prints, canvas prints, art boards, metal prints, acrylic block plus lots more can be found on the RedBubble store HERE.

The Wider Picture

By |2020-01-16T13:48:28+00:00January 16th, 2020|Categories: News|Tags: , , , , , , |

Islay, Scotland 2019

Copying Panoramic Prints

Photography prints come in all kinds of sizes these days from the small to the impressive extreme size of the wide panoramic. The panoramic photo has been around for many years and the format has been well used over the years to document school groups and landscapes. At first glance, these extra-wide images would appear to be nearly impossible to copy. Although the unusual size makes them technically more challenging to copy, these large images can be copied just like any other print.

Working in Wide

In late 2019 a couple of panoramic photos arrived from clients who were looking for copies of the photos. The first photo was in three pieces and needed a lot of work to get a full print for display. That image had been delivered by e-mail so scanning was not required.

The second client, however, had sent a panoramic image that was a lot wider coming in at a total width of 43 inches (over 3.5 feet or 1.09 metres). The photograph had been taken in the early nineteen sixties and featured an entire school group including of all the staff and pupils. It was a beautiful image that had been photographed and printed to a very standard.

I’d certainly never seen any panoramic photo on that kind of scale before. After scanning the original and some repair work in Photoshop, the photograph was ready to be printed and sent back to the client by mid-December. The whole copying process took just under three weeks.

The Copying Service

The photograph copying service here at Richard Flint Photography can provide copies of any size of photo – large or small. Even extremely wide photographs can be copied to a high standard. Whatever the size of the print, if you have a photograph that needs copying or you have any questions about getting a photograph copied, please contact me via the contact page or by emailing me at [email protected]

Details about the photograph copying service and prices can be found HERE.

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