…behind the shot – Dauntless

I’m a Believer….Don’t worry this isn’t a post about a greater being, I made the decision a long time ago to never discuss Religion or Politics in any way shape or form online, in fact I don’t do it offline either, when discussing photography I don’t care what beliefs any other people practice, same applies to race and gender choices. So what’s the title all about then….

I believe in fate, photographically speaking, that moment when circumstances fall into place that enable you to capture an image you didn’t or couldn’t pre-plan. It’s different to luck, we all get lucky from time to time, in fact when it comes to any form of nature photography I’d say every decent photo depends on a good chunk of luck, unless you can control the weather and every other element of the natural world that is! 

I’ve had a few instances where fate has been a contributing factor to getting a favourite photograph. Before becoming a full time photographer I worked at a location where I’d frequently take different routes to work, just for variation of scenery more than anything else, on one such route I’d pass a field with a big old oak tree in the middle, I always liked this tree but never took a photo because past the tree line behind there’s some houses in the far distance which I didn’t like. Fast forward to about three years ago…

I’d been having problems with my car, nothing major but it was due to go to a garage first thing where I was to collect a loan car for the day, I was then going off to see a commercial client so had my camera gear with me and was dressed smarter than my normal daytime attire (jeans). Upon arrival there was a problem with the loaner, can’t remember what but it meant I drove off in mine again, it was a normal morning weather wise, a bright clear chilly morning. To get to the client from the garage meant I could pass ‘my’ tree, it wasn’t the quickest way but I had some time to kill as I hadn’t needed to fill out the paperwork for the loan car, it’d been a few years since I had seen it last so was mildly pleased we’d be catching up. 

As I got nearer fog started to develop, there’s water nearby and the area is below a hill, when I pulled up the tree looked great, it’s bare branches silhouetted against the misty veil, better still I could just see the tree line but nothing beyond. To get the angle I wanted meant going in the field, there’s a public footpath going round the edge of the field which was very muddy and wet, to get in requires climbing over an old stile that would make a challenging section in an episode of ‘ninja warrior’. I got the shot, and it remains to be one of my personal favourites.

A solitary English Oak tree standing alone in a field, a visible representation of Stabilty, Strength, Solitude, Reliability and many other conceptual synonyms – I’ve titled the image Dauntless ‘showing fearlessness and determination’


Fate, luck, divine intervention, whatever terminology you choose to describe situations like this is fine by me. I always keep a pair of wellies in the boot (trunk) of my car, as I mentioned earlier I was dressed smartly with normal shoes on, if I’d had the loan car I wouldn’t have transferred my boots and wouldn’t have been able to walk in the mud – Fate!

I hope you’ve enjoyed reading my little story.

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