Transformedbylight.com
Michael Stirling-Aird Landscape Photography
 
InverPolly hills at dusk, NW Scotland, © Copyright Michael Stirling-Aird 2007

 

Thankyou for taking the time to look at this site - I really do hope you enjoy the images.

I feel passionately that Scotland offers some of the most beautiful landscapes in the world. My goal, over a long period of time, is to make images of these landscapes that move me, and hopefully some others. I have no grand vision beyond that, and the more I learn about landscape photography, the more I realise that I have to learn.

Fine art prints

My fine art prints are printed on Hahnemuhle Fine Art Pearl or Brilliant Museum exhibition grade archival satin matte paper. I use Giclée UK who supply the art community with exceptional museum standard Fine Art prints. For the limited edition prints, the edition for each print is a total of either 25, 50 or 100. No other fine art prints will be sold once an edition has sold out, though I may use the print for calendars/books/commercial assignments.

Equipment & creating digital files

Most of the images on this site have been made using a large format camera (an Ebony RSW 45), though a few have been made using medium format or 35mm cameras. I love view cameras because the image is inverted on the groundglass, and this helps compositionally. In addition, they offer technical benefits via the ability to raise and lower the lens to control perspective, or tilt the lens to control depth of field. They are simple to use as they don't have lots of buttons and automatic 'functions' - this helps to keep the photographic process simple. When viewing prints, the quality of large format jumps out at you in a way that is not obvious with low resolution images online, and this is particularly apparent in shots where there are subtle colours and tones, or distant landscapes.

Other essential equipment includes a spotmeter, carbon fibre tripod, geared tripod head and several black binliners - useful to sit on when its wet, and for protecting the camera from passing showers. I never venture into the hills without good thermals, a down jacket, goretex waterproofs, a survival bag, headtorch, food and water. It's easy to underestimate just how cold it can be in the hills in Scotland, particularly when hours need to be spent waiting for the right light. Even in Summer, the temperature can drop rapidly during the 'magic hours'- snow flurries in June on the mountain tops is not uncommon.

Print quality

The picture below on the left is a shot of Sandwood Bay in North West Scotland. Once this has been properly scanned, the detail is still outstanding - the picture on the right shows a small part of the scene from the lower (centre) forground - you can literally see the grains of sand, and this is on a 44 by 35 inch print (I should point out that the image has no sharpening applied).

As another example, the picture below on the left is a shot of Black Mount near Glen Coe. Once this has been properly scanned to 44 by 35 inches, the picture on the right shows a crop from the foreground which hopefully illustrates the image quality you can expect. If you scroll down a bit further, you can see another crop of this image which gives a feel for the tonal range in the sky:

Also taken from the image above, below is an unsharpened crop at from the image at 44 by 35 inches which gives a feel for the smooth tonal range in the sky:

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