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Bluebell Walk 2015 at Jackson’s Coppice

A single bluebell stem
A single bluebell stem
Hyacinthoides non-scripta, The native Bluebell. I’ve gone for a wide open aperture to throw the background right out of focus isolating a single stem.
1/320th sec @ f/2, ISO 200.

It’s bluebell season again. This time of year is a great time to get out in the woods with your camera and capture some spring colour. This afternoon we headed down to one of my favourite Staffordshire nature reserves with a group of photographers and spent a couple of hours photographing the bluebells. The reserve, Jackson’s Coppice, is located near Eccleshall and is home to birds, badgers, and bluebells. There’s also a wild flower meadow which is currently in the process of being cleared and re-seeded with native wildflowers and a marsh, with a boardwalk over it.

This year was a little different to previous years – it’s the first time mine and Alys’ son, Elliott, has come out with us. At 14 months he’s still a little young to use a camera, but we’re hoping that he’ll grow to love both photography and nature when he’s old enough to.

The great thing about Jackson’s Coppice is that it’s reasonably compact, so there’s no real danger of getting lost. There’s one main footpath that circles the site and that’s it. At a brisk pace you can do a lap in under 15 minutes, but we managed to take a lot longer thanks to frequent stops to take photographs!

Once we had completed our lap we had a quick chat with some of the photographers who came along about ideas for possible future walks. We’d love to run a similar event in the Autumn photographing the autumnal colours on the trees – the question is where should we go? If anyone has any suggestions for some great autumnal spots then do please let us know via our contact form.

If you’re thinking about going to see the bluebells yourself please remember that they’re protected by the Wildlife and Countryside Act, under which it is an offence to remove or damage them, so tread carefully! (This only applies to native bluebells, Hyacinthoides non-scripta).

Path through the bluebells
For a few weeks each year Jackson’s Coppice is transformed with an amazing Violet-Blue carpet. Don’t forget to stick to the paths if you visit so the bluebells can continue to thrive for future years.
1/100th sec @ f/5.6, ISO 400
Photographer crouching down to take a photo from a low angle.
It’s always good to see people getting down to the same level as their subject rather than shooting from eye level the whole time. Shooting from your subject’s level helps to develop a connection with the viewer.
1/600th sec @ f/2, ISO 200.
Alys with baby Elliott in a baby carrier on her chest
Today was Elliott’s first outing with Illuminate. He’s not teaching just yet, but you never know what the future might hold! Also good to have Alys back with us – we’ve missed her while she’s been off on maternity leave.
1/100th sec @ f/8, ISO 250
Baby Elliott in amongst the bluebells waving his arms in the air.
Elliott loves a trip out in the woods. I don’t know how many times I had to stop him trying to eat holly leaves while taking this shot!
1/800th sec @ f/5.6, ISO 200