Darren McLoughlin

Irishman and International travel photographer in search of the best bits of Ireland. Leading photography tours and experiences in Ireland.

Contributor to New York Times / Sunday Times / Irish Times / Echtra Echtra and Eonmusic

Cancer survivor.

Ask me about travel in Ireland or about photography in Ireland.

Wednesday, 02 November 2022 22:35

Sunset Seascape, Start of Winter in Ireland

As I mentioned in a previous post, in Irish tradition the winter has started with the beginning of the dark half of the year after Halloween.

But that doesn't mean that Ireland is not a destination for off season travel, on the contrary, with fewer crowds and some of the best light the months of November through to March are ideal for seascape photography in Ireland.

Here as well as shooting with the sun, we turned to photograph the sea cliffs with the sun setting behind.

It is a difficult photograph to shoot a landscape like this contre-jour but the movement and colour in the sky, coupled with some good post-processing has resulted in a fine image that is in contrast to shooting with the sun and its clear light (image coming soon in a subsequent post).

Making use of the texture and feeling of this deserted Irish beach at sunset.

I will be regularly running seascape photography workshops throughout the winter in Ireland, for more information contact me through the contact page or send me an email (up at the top of the page).

It was high summer. the start of August and after photographing a river woodland I stopped to photograph this scene.

In front of me, on this hot day in the Irish countryside, a long scene of distant heather-clad mountains with green lower slopes and a vast field of golden barley.

A big sky filled with clouds allowed a little blue to show.

At the same time I photographed bees and thistles.

A few weeks later I saw a tweet, of an Irish painter that I had not heard of before, referencing a landscape from County Mayo in Ireland's west. It was Across the Bog, Mayo by Jeremiah Hoad.

And I was struck by the similarities between this fine oil painting of an Irish bogland scene and my own recent image of the barley field with mountains.

Monday, 31 October 2022 21:49

Samhain Sunset, End of the Light, Ireland

Summer, or the light half of the year, ends at Halloween or more accurately, Samhain, in the Irish tradition.

Here, a sunset seascape from the Irish coast as the light half of the year ends, the Celtic new year begins and although this will be the dark half of the year, the light will be fantastic.

While daylength shortens now until the winter solstice on December 21st, what light we do get is often bright, clear and colourful. 

On those rainy, cloudy days where the sun really doesn't make an appearance the light is still great for photography.

Autumn, winter and spring are perfect seasons for photography and with the added bonus of fewer tourists, Ireland in winter should be a photographer's preference.

Join me, Panoramic Ireland, to learn how to photograph and to see Ireland. Tours and workshops available all year round.

Thursday, 27 October 2022 21:16

Horseshoe House, Galway

If you are travelling through the streets of Galway you may well spot this unusual house with its horseshoe-shaped windows.

The quirky building was owned by horse-mad local man Michael Cunniss who spoke with Ireland's national broadcaster RTE in 1982.

A man before his time, Michael complained to the RTE reporter about the "...smelly old cars going along the road..." and he even kept a horse in the house that could watch TV through a hatch in to the living room.

It is common enough even today to see old forge buildings with horseshoe shaped doorways but nowhere else have I seen windows in this style.

Have you seen this house, or another similar?

Adobe's Lightroom is a powerful piece of software and sometimes it is necessary to change settings.

Here for example is one use, the standard settings for filenames on export can cause problems. If for example you have an image that has been edited in Photoshop and has the suffix -Edit like I do here then on export the entire filename can sometimes go missing.

Or if you work for different clients or publications then it is nice to apply their naming structure to exported images.

For me, I like to keep the original filename in as part of the export so that it makes finding images easier if a client has a query.

Even if a client has no specific requirements for naming images it is still useful to be able to identify or file away finished images based on the filename.

So I add some custom text based on where the image will be used, keep the original filename and sometimes add other information.

Thankfully Lightroom allows all this to be done quite easily.

Here's how:

  1. Export the image using Ctrl+Shift+E or right click the image and choose Export > Export... as described here.

    Adobe Lightroom File Naming
    Export Image and Choose Custom Settings > Edit...
  2. Here I have chosen to go with Filename and Custom Text (set on the main Export dialog so Insert > Filename and Insert > Custom Text followed by Done.

    Editing Custom Name in Adobe Lightroom
    Adobe Lightroom Filename > Custom Text File Renaming
  3. Check that the example filename is correct, here in the final image it shows correctly as Filename > Custom Text.

    Adobe Lightroom, File Renamed Ready to Export
    Adobe Lightroom, Image Renamed Ready to Export

 That's it, you can now export your images with filenames that suit.

I hope this short tutorial has been useful, check back regularly for more or sign up for more information. Panoramic Ireland's workshops run all year round, in Ireland and online.

Monday, 24 October 2022 00:12

The Scenic Walk, Ireland

Autumn sunlight and the scenery of a tree tunnel of yew.

Ireland is full of scenic roadways, avenues of fine trees but some are more impressive than others.

Obviously I am talking about the Dark Hedges in County Antrim, and yet as here above there are many other equally beautiful avenues to walk through in Ireland.

Saturday, 22 October 2022 22:22

Adobe Bridge 2023 Multi Monitor Setup

Another year is almost over and Adobe has announced major updates to its Photoshop, Lightroom and Bridge applications.

Here, one of my favourites with changes to layout in Adobe Bridge when using more than one monitor.

Rearranging workspaces is now easy and dragging panels off screen to a second monitor allows for a more streamlined experience.

Adobe Bridge is of course a very underrated program, I don't use it a lot but I do use it for important tasks - more to come on that later.

Here some images I have photographed in my Bridge Library featuring Billie Eilish and Trinity College's campanile. The campanile was completed in 1853 to designs by noted architect Charles Lanyon. Seven-time Grammy-award winner Billie Eilish wrote and performed the theme song to Daniel Craig's fifth and final James Bond film No Time to Die.

Wednesday, 19 October 2022 23:41

City Quay, Dublin - Planning Permission Refused

What would have been Dublin's tallest building, to be built on the former City Arts Centre, seen here above on the left - the red brick building, has been refused planning permission by Dublin City Council.

In the image above the proposed building would continue out the top of the scene. 

Dublin City Council found that the proposed building would have a significantly detrimental visual impact on the River Liffey and its vistas.

Grant Thornton, the City Quay National School and the Catholic Archdiocese of Dublin were amongst the principal objectors to the development.

The character of Dublin's most iconic building, the Custom House, would also be seriously impacted by the scale of the proposed development.

It seems in Dublin, that despite the city's traditional low height building policy, developers are trying to build high in the characterful city and not in the suburbs or urban fringe.

City Quay Dublin, the River Liffey and the proposed development
City Quay Dublin, the River Liffey and the proposed development

 

Ireland's national airline, Aer Lingus has announced pretty good deals for travel from Boston to Shannon in the west of Ireland and New York (JFK) to Dublin.

Return flights and car hire giving you six nights in Ireland start at $499 per person including taxes and charges and these prices can be used for travel all through the winter and spring 2023.

The price is based on two people sharing a car and travelling together but what a perfect way to see Ireland, with a friend travelling around the quiet backroads outside of the tourist season, to photograph scenes like those below.

But you only have until October 14th to book the Aer Lingus flights, take a little longer to think about a Panoramic Ireland photography tour.

For extra, flights from other US cities can be booked as can an automatic car if the manual (stick shift) option doesn't appeal.

Ireland is a fine place in the off season, so enjoy the above collage of autumn, winter and spring images as well as the gallery below.

While you are travelling around in your hire car why not meet up with me for a half day or full day to photograph the colourful Irish countryside where you are in the quieter months.

To find out more send me an email or use the Contact form.

Panoramic Ireland's photography tours and workshops operate all year round in Ireland, see the Emerald Isle without the tourists.

Find out more about the Aer Lingus deals here.

  • autumn-colour-woodland-stream-panoramic-ireland-_MG_4678-4678
  • autumn-sunset-lake-panoramic-ireland-_MG_2667-2667
  • carrcikfergus-castle-antrim-sunrise-panoramic-ireland-_4260219-4260219
  • carrick-a-rede-winter-seascape-panoramic-ireland-20140226-_MG_9551-9551
  • cliffs-of-moher-clare-atalntic-sunset-winter-panoramic-ireland-20140913-_MG_4782-4782
  • colourful-antrim-coast-spring-panoramic-ireland-20131006-_MG_4258-4258
  • colourful-winter-wicklow-panoramic-ireland-20140119-_MG_8438-8438
  • connemara-spring-skyscape-panoramic-ireland-20140424-_MG_3226-Edit-
  • dunluce-castle-panoramic-ireland-20100514_3137 Panorama2a-
  • giants-causeway-winter-panoramic-ireland-_MG_5234-5234
  • glendalough-rainbow-autumn-colour-panoramic-ireland-_MG_5403-5403
  • green-colourful-snow-winter-irish-landscape-panoramic-ireland-_C140002-140002
  • kylemore-abbey-panoramic-ireland-_C2A6549-6549
  • mussenden-temple-winter-panoramic-ireland-20140227-_MG_9606-Edit-
  • panoramic-ireland-west-of-ireland-C2A6524-6524
  • shipwreck-beach-irish-trader-winter-panoramic-ireland-20140227-_MG_9669-9669
  • snow-capped-mountains-winter-mayo-panoramic-ireland-20140113-_MG_8090-Edit-
  • snowy-valley-west-of-panoramic-ireland-20140212-_MG_8800-Edit-
  • spring-sunset-panoramic-ireland-_MG_6421-6421
  • stormy-giants-causeway-panoramic-ireland-_C2A4031-4031
  • sunny-giants-causeway-antrim-panoramic-ireland-_4300074-4300074
  • west-of-ireland-panoramic-ireland-_C2A6463-6463
  • wicklow-sunny-winter-snow-sunshine-panoramic-ireland-20100210_1426 copy-
  • wild-atlantic-way-sunset-seascape-panoramic-ireland-_C2A7337-7337
  • winter-connemara-sheep-snow-reflections-panoramic-ireland-_MG_6798-Edit-
  • winter-galway-panoramic-ireland-20131101-_MG_5384-5384
  • winter-seascape-panoramic-ireland-_MG_1017-Edit-
  • winter-seascape-waterford-panoramic-ireland-_MG_6550-Edit-
  • winter-snow-standing-stone-panoramic-ireland-_C2A6950-6950
Wednesday, 05 October 2022 21:01

Cloudy Autumn along the River, Ireland

Autumn is upon us here in Ireland, we have passed the autumn equinox and now the length of daylight is shorter than night.

Last week I was photographing in County Roscommon at the inaugural Night and Day Festival which featured Irish and international artists - more to come on that soon.

This week I have been photographing in some woodlands in the Irish countryside, the weather was a little challenging but the workshop with NS from Virginia, a first time visitor to Ireland, went well as we covered long exposure photography and how to photograph colourful scenes.

Here we left the woodland to photograph along a wide, fast-flowing river to another section of colourful woods on the opposite bank. This is a scene that looks best in the autumn months.

Join me, Panoramic Ireland, to photograph Ireland's rivers, woodlands and countryside in autumn, winter, spring and summer.

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