Perfect Morning in the Phoenix Park

I arrived at the Phoenix Park long before dawn last Sunday morning. I was running one of our Dublin weekend workshops and I’d been keeping an eye on the weather all week. Low temperatures, no wind, and the chance of mist were very much a possibility. I’d even said a decade of the ‘mystical mystery of the mist’ before bed. Only landscape photographers that really know their Rosary Beads know this decade.  As I drove through the park just before 7 it seemed my prayers had been answered. Even though it was still dark I could see layers of mist all around me. Trees popping out through the eerie pre-dawn light. Feeling very very very very excited ..

A misty morning is like Mecca for landscape photographers. Ok, enough of the religious symbolism but mist is truly transformative to the landscape, and transformative experiences in nature are genuinely spiritual. You completely lose yourself in the amazing conditions. Time stands still and your whole being moves to a different place for a few hours.

My intention in bringing the group to the park was trees. I have nothing against wildlife photography or deer in the Phoenix Park for that matter, but most of the images I have seen from the park just feel too literal to me. I’m not advocating this to be right or wrong. I’m simply stating what works for me. I love, love, love transformative light that naturally abstracts the landscape. On a personal level, images that move away from reality a touch, that have graphic originality, are what genuinely inspire me.

So just shoot the trees, ignore the deer. Ha ha, what a ridiculous idea. I just couldn’t help myself. The light was just so special, the deer fully majestic in the morning light and what an atmosphere to match .. Trees, deer, mist, cityscapes, Dublin, home. What an amazing combo to experience. The Rosary Beads need to come out more often..

PS. These new images are not listed in our galleries yet but if your looking for a fine art print drop us a line at

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Before someone turned the lights on ..

The pre dawn glow was unreal. Distant city still in view ..

As the light came through and combined with the mist the reds were just so intense. Big long lens (200 – 500 Nikon) to isolate the ladies in the distance.

It felt like we we’re in a Tuscan mist. Poolbeg grounded us though. Always present on the Dublin skyline …

I came for the tress. I came for the trees ..

The Savanah that is the Pheonix Park ..

The Savanah that is the Pheonix Park ..

Finally, they all piled into the meadow. The mist still persisting and that amazing city backdrop ..

The lads out for a stroll

A quick final note for the photographers out there. I used my Nikon D850 for these shots and a combo of my 70 – 200 and 200 – 500 Nikon lenses. Some of my favourite shots landscape wise are with these big lenses. Of course, we normally think wide-angle with the landscape but compressing images with bigger focal lengths works great for me too. I didn’t need my trusty Lee Filters on this shoot (very unusual) as shutter speeds were quick and not much sky involved. All the gear as always was purchased from the great folks at Conns Cameras (






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