I revisited Bench Tor a few weeks ago, a few days before my birthday in fact, to catch the sunrise. This is one of my favourite tors. I’m not sure exactly why, given there are so many other tors to visit, but there is so much to view around; the Dart Valley below, Sharp Tor, Mel Tor, Venford Reservoir and in the distance Yar Tor, and Coombestone Tor. basically gorgeous 360 degree views.
This was one of those mornings where I arrived and the clouds were very heavy at the horizon and I knew sunrise was going to be delayed. Having said that in my experience a delayed sunrise is not necessarily a bad one! I also decided this time to set up my GoPro Hero 3 in time-lapse mode. I have not used it much recently and encouraged by other photographers currently doing time-lapse, I thought I would give it a go. So much of your time when shooting is deep in focus that I find I often miss what is going on around me which was the main reason I decided to do it, to look back and see what I was up to and how the light changed.
I thought I’d make a blog about my visit as it was one of those morning where the quality of the light was stunning. It lasted for a long time allowing me to try out a lot of different compositions especially as I find this tor quite difficult to shoot as it is so spread out. There are not many leading lines around, especially as it is surrounded by quite a few high peaks.
As you can see from the video the clouds turned a subtle pink even after the sun had risen which is not something I have seen a lot. Although my shots below have been processed in Adobe Lightroom and some layer blended in Photoshop (I often don’t use grads anymore) I consider them to be representative of the scenes I saw especially if you consider the saturation and colours I captured with out editing on my GoPro. The GoPro footage was compiled in Adobe Premiere. I was shooting at 1 frame every 2 seconds and play back was 24 fps. I shot over 3000 frames until the battery ran out (after about 1 hr 40 minutes). I have been continued to do a few time-lapses of my shoots as it’s a bit of fun and to give me an insight of how conditions changed during each shoot. I have to say I have been very impressed with the quality from this little camera on and off the bike considering it was setup rather randomly and shoots in auto-exposure.
Anyway I decided to blog my visit as I seemed to get a wide variety of compositions from one trip. This is one of those mornings that it was worth getting up at the crack of dawn for! A worthwhile location to visit on Dartmoor.