Martyn Thompson – Landscape Photography

Martyn Thompson – Landscape Photography, Photography Experiences, Photography Excursions, Photography Courses

Photography Experiences in and around the Almeria province of Spain.

Slightly revamped website with MORE to come!!!! Click here to visit.

Our mission is to to offer the highest quality photographic experiences whilst promoting a healthy respect forthe surrounding environment and nature.

See and photograph the beauty of the Parque Natural de Cabo de Gata and Europe’s only desert right here in the Almeria province of Spain – a unique experience you will never forget.

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Full Moon Addict

Those of you who follow this blog and I KNOW there are a few, will know my passion for night-time photography. I just love the “other-worldly” effect the moonlight has.

Playa El Embarcadero

I’ve been experimenting for a while now with longer exposure times / lower ISO settings / smaller aperture combinations. I wouldn’t claim to have mastered the art yet but my luna-photography is definitely improving; though there’s not enough to do whilst waiting for several 15 minute exposures to finish and then the time it takes for each photo to save – I mean if I read a book by torch light, that would affect the photo!

The full moon is my light source and although my iPhone app told me that yesterday was the full moon, it neglected to inform me that it was at 02.05am (Tuesday into Wednesday) so I possibly missed out on the best of the light. There is however a 6 – 7 day range around the full moon when it is (generally) bright enough to call it a “full moon” for night photography purposes, so I guess I can still make the claim “La Luna Llena”.

Playa El Embarcadero

During last night’s moon, I went to the beautifully rugged beach of Playa El Embarcadero (aka El Esparto) near Los Escullos. A stunning location and well worth a visit in the day time, last night was the calmest I’ve ever seen it. Apart from taking the photos, I wandered about looking at the wild-life; well I had to do something whilst the shutter was open! I was lucky enough to watch sea-tomatoes feeding and to see a scorpion fish… also lucky enough not to be too close!

If anyone would like to come with me on my next venture, or even to join me on a future full moon photography session, please email me: martyn@martynthompson.net. I’d be only too happy to show you 🙂

Desierto de Tabernas

Desierto de Tabernas

Desierto de Tabernas

The Tabernas Desert is situated between the Sierra Nevada, Sierra de Gádor, Sierra de Los Filabres and Sierra Alhamilla in the Province of Almería and is one of the most dramatic landscapes in Spain. A combination of little rainfall, high temperatures all year round and long levels of sun exposure produces the dry climate that gives rise to this true desert. Temperatures in winter rarely drop below freezing at night. During the summer, temperatures during the day can exceed 40°C.

Site of a former Tsunami

Site of a former Tsunami

The Tabernas Desert (Badlands) is one of the most geologically interesting landscapes in Europe, since it clearly shows the process of natural desertification and erosion. Features include the sheer-sided gullies, carved out by the infrequent but torrential rains falling only a few days in the year. The arroyos or small steams formed by the torrential rain harbour most of the vegetation and fauna. The desert also contains numerous dry river beds or ramblas, which provide a unique micro-climate that is more humid than any other place in this otherwise parched landscape.

About eight million years ago, the sea covered the entire Tabernas desert area, reaching the Sierra de los Filabres to the north. The deposited material (sand and loam) of which makes up the Tabernas desert today. A million years later the Sierra Alhamilla rose up, cutting off the desert from the ocean and creating an inland sea where further sand, loam, clay, limestone and gypsum were deposited. At the end of pliocene epoch the sea receded, leaving the seabed exposed to erosion.

Last of the Mohicans

Last of the Mohicans

The Tabernas Desert, because of its similarities with the North American deserts, was used from 1950s (and still used today) for the shooting of many films and westerns. Many spaghetti westerns, including the seminal films of Sergio Leone were shot here, as were scenes from The Last Mohican, Lawrence of Arabia and many more.

There are a number of film studios in this area you can visit that have now been turned into theme parks.

Yet another photographers paradise in the Province of Almeria and not too far from the Parque Natural de Cabo de Gata. We were lucky enough to be shown around this beautiful area by our good friend Jesus Contreras, please visit his website to learn more about him.

This Tabernas Desert is best seen in spring-time when there is an abundance of colours and vegetation. Although it’s fair to say you could visit these Badlands everyday and see something different.