Wednesday, 09 May 2018 00:00

Norfolk - A Photographer's Guide by Joe Lenton - By the River Wensum in Norwich

Written by  Joe Lenton
Rate this item
(2 votes)
Norfolk - A Photographer's Guide by Joe Lenton - By the River Wensum in Norwich

Norfolk is very popular with photographers. It is easy to see why. We've got stunning coastline, the broads, mills & windpumps, lovely villages and a city full of character to name but a few of the highlights. Whether you are coming to Norfolk on holiday or are lucky enough to live here, there is always something worth exploring with your camera in hand. Over the coming months I will be sharing some tips for locations that I've enjoyed photographing.

We start the series in the city of Norwich by the River Wensum. If you like variety and a range of architecture, then I can highly recommend a walk along the river. From ancient buildings to very modern homes, the river shows the blend of old and new that Norwich does so well. There are car parks dotted at various locations on or very near to the river so you can easily pick your own starting point

For this photo journey we'll start near the football stadium by the Carrow Road bridge.  We shall be revisiting some of the locations in the next post when we look at the river at night. For now, we are thinking of daytime photography (including sunrise or sunset if you wish). Many properties were built just a few years ago down by the river near the Carrow Road bridge. Some of them look a little futuristic so lend themselves well to effects that bring this out more

Norwich_Riverside_during_the_day-1.jpg

The streaks in the clouds and the smoothed water are caused by using a 10 stop Neutral Density Filter. This is essentially a very dark piece of glass that goes on to the lens so that the shutter has to stay open a long time to get a picture. For this kind of shot you need your camera to be mounted on a sturdy tripod so that it won't move while taking the picture. You can't do this handheld as it needs to be perfectly still for quite a few seconds (or, in some cases, minutes!). By converting the image to black and white it makes it more about the shapes and the contrast, bringing out the metallic feel of the building. We will revisit this location for some night shots next time, but for now we move along the river towards the city centre.

It is worth going on to the bridge and looking back down the river. Even here you can see the old and the new side by side with historic ruins standing next to modern buildings. We continue to the other side of the bridge, behind the swimming pool.

Norwich_Riverside_during_the_day-2.jpg

More flats loom over the river from the opposite bank, casting their reflections into the water. This made for another interesting long exposure image. Look out for interesting light falling on the buildings. Nearer the sunrise and sunset the light takes on a more golden hue so that can give you some lovely highlights on architecture.

Norwich_Riverside_during_the_day-3a.jpg

Further along the river you come to another bridge (Millennium Bridge) and then the Riverside restaurants, shops, flats and the Novi Sad Friendship Bridge. Look out for interesting shapes from modern architecture. See if you can compose using the lines of the bridges as leading lines to draw you into the frame. Look out for interesting viewpoints other than the obvious eye level from the main paths. Sometimes getting down low opens up a new and much more dynamic perspective.

Norwich_Riverside_during_the_day-3b.jpg

Further along the river past another bridge by the station leading to Prince of Wales Road, we then come to an older area. Past the weeping willows you arrive at Pulls Ferry. This historic landmark is a photographer's favourite and can be photographed well from both banks of the river.

Norwich_Riverside_during_the_day-4a.jpg

Norwich_Riverside_during_the_day-4b.jpg

If you carry on along the river on the same bank as Pulls Ferry you will then pass behind the playing fields of Norwich School with views over to the Cathedral. With the many trees along the way you can create interesting frames within your image within which to place the cathedral.

Norwich_Riverside_during_the_day-5.jpg

Continuing along you come to Bishopgate with its ancient bridge crossing towards Gas Hill. In spring there is usually a good display of daffodils along the riverbank near the bridge. Next up is the cow tower. This ancient building stands on a bend in the river and can be challenging to photograph well. You might like to include a person in the scene or a bench in the foreground to give an idea of scale.

Norwich_Riverside_during_the_day-6a.jpg

The next bridge is at the back of the Adam & Eve car park. This modern structure arcs across the river in a smooth curve. It can be used as a leading line taking you to the building on the far bank, for example.

Norwich_Riverside_during_the_day-6b.jpg

Round another bend we come to St James Mill. The weeping willows can catch the light nicely and it is another historic landmark worth photographing. Look out for interesting reflections in the water.

Norwich_Riverside_during_the_day-7a.jpg

You might like to couple the old with the new again here and include the modern glass structure in the frame. If you want a bit more contrast, try to get light reflecting off the glass.

Norwich_Riverside_during_the_day-7b.jpg

Beyond Whitefriars bridge (itself worth exploring for details and wider landscape images) we come to Friar's Quay. The multicoloured houses provide plenty of photo opportunities. Look out also for foreground objects near the wall by the river.

Norwich_Riverside_during_the_day-8.jpg

At certain times of the year, sunrise and sunset can line up perfectly with the direction of the river at various points. In this instance, sunset lined up in late November with the view towards Fye Bridge. If you want to be able to plan for shots like this then it helps to do some research first. I recommend looking at www.suncalc.net where you can enter any location on any date and see the predicted angle of sunrise and sunset. You can also get apps for your phone that do a similar job. This helps to avoid a wasted trip if you are after a particular photo.

Norwich_Riverside_during_the_day-9.jpg

Sometimes the light at some of these locations can be very contrasty. This might be too much for your camera to balance all in one image. So, you could end up with your brighter areas going too white or your darker areas too black. One possible option is to choose HDR mode on your camera to tell it to blend images to produce a more balanced photo.

Next time we will revisit parts of the river at night time.

© Joe Lenton, May 2018

Joe Lenton is a professional photography tutor and commercial photographer. He has won many international awards for his images and been featured in exhibitions around the world. He runs photography workshops and teaches various aspects of photography and images processing one to one . For more free photography tips and to enquire about photography training please visit Original Art Photography .

Last modified on Wednesday, 02 January 2019 19:10

Visit the following businesses

cache/resized/c257d61a0a5cb18fc50bba077cbd643e.jpg
Madeline Dando Books
Thank you for visiting my page. I am an author from Wymondham in Norfolk and I write under the pseudonym of Madeline Dando. This was the name of my late mum and I am extremely proud to write under her name. My real name is Martin Wanger and I ...
Explore
cache/resized/9ac0c3a8594854dee10de633de813c7e.jpg
Yoga Lightness
Jane is offering Yasodhara Yoga classes, workshops and retreats in Oulton, near Alysham in the north Norfolk countryside. Jane’s classes are suitable for all levels of experience, from beginner to advanced, and will appeal particularly to those who ...
Explore
cache/resized/d7f6e4d228ca616731c8334bc9c925d3.jpg
Onestop Webshop
Are you looking for a creative web design company to deliver your next web project ? Based in Great Yarmouth we offer companies across Norfolk cost-effective website design and online marketing.  We specialise in website design for smaller ...
Explore
cache/resized/ef4097b4d85a72d91bb320feeb1b0f35.jpg
Norfolk Country Chic
Norfolk Country shabby chic hand painted antique vintage furniture and accessories based in North Norfolk using Annie Sloan & Farrow & Ball with an eye for detail and the reincarnation of tired worn out furniture. Based in the heart of the ...
Explore
cache/resized/a75486a190d54ec301d6be6e7445defc.jpg
Original Art Photography
Become a better photographer faster with expert tuition from an international award-winning professional. Getting started taking photos can be easy. But some can find improving difficult with confusion over the camera controls, fear of Photoshop ...
Explore
cache/resized/9b75cfd12f389ce751ac33d384bb7a08.jpg
Virginia Court Hotel
The Virginia Court Hotel in Cromer North Norfolk is an independently owned 23 bedroom seaside hotel, offering overnight accommodation to suit everyone’s needs. This stunning Norfolk Hotel offers suites, superking bedded, twins, doubles and single ...
Explore
benefits banner

Related items

  • Norfolk Black History Month – Young Gifted and Black
    Norfolk Black History Month returns in October with the theme, Young Gifted and Black, celebrating youth, culture and identity. There are more than 80 events across the county featuring a packed programme of art, literature, film, music, theatre, talks, exhibitions and workshops. 
     
    A portrait of Norwich actor, Roger Nsengiyumva by Jamaican artist, Danny Keen will be unveiled in the foyer at Norwich City Hall, 10am on Monday, October 7 and will be on display until the end of the month. 
     
    Roger epitomises the Young Gifted and Black theme. Born in Rwanda, during the Genocide against the Tutsis (1994), he came to Norwich with his mother, Illuminée Nganemariya in 1996 and grew up in the city. He had his first acting break in the 2010 feature film  Africa United and is currently in a production of Blood Wedding at the Young Vic in London.
     
  • Anglian Annals by Peter Sargent
    Anglian Annals, Norwich writer Peter Sargent's new East Anglian history book was launched at Jarrold Book Department Norwich on Saturday, September 21, along with Peter Sargent's Moments in Time, a box set featuring his three local history books, A Moment in Time (2017), A Place in History (2018) and Anglian Annals.
     
    Peter Sargent presents 50 more short history stories, in Anglian Annals, which both entertain and inform. Peter explained his research and selection process: "Ideas come to me for stories from all sorts of sources. It can be an item on the news, a random conversation, often a reference in a book or film. In the case of Sir John Hawkwood, who features in Anglian Annals, I came across him while planning a trip to Florence. When I discovered he was born in Essex and was a celebrated mercenary soldier, I decided he had to go in the book. Hawkwood's impressively large memorial is indeed in the Florence Duomo, and it was worth queuing up to get in and see it.”
    "There are a lot of different sources of information, from the internet to works of history,” continued Peter. “I find the main Norwich library in the Forum very useful for original material, and also like to head out in search of obscure memorials in churches and suchlike throughout the region.”
     
  • Win tickets to "Norwich on the Dark Side" tour with Paul Dickson Tours

    All Things Norfolk have teamed up with Paul Dickson Tours for a chance of winning one of two pairs of tickets to "Norwich on the Dark Side" Tour on either Tuesday 29th or Wednesday 30th October.

    This 1½ hour guided tour with Norwich guide, Paul Dickson, looks at the darker side of Norwich, crime, punishment, filth and misery! The tour starts outside the Erpingham Gate of Norwich Cathedral and finishes in the Market Place. Hear about grizzly tales of the plague, the ups and downs of Kett’s Rebellion, the horror of Lollards Pit, drunken 17th century antics, celebrated Victorian murders and executions, floods, filth and grime – all stories from the darker side of Norwich.

  • ‘Matthew Shardlake Stayed Here’ – Maids Head Hotel Celebrates CJ Sansom’s Tombland
    ‘Matthew Shardlake’ (Paul Dickson) and Maids Head Hotel General Manager, Christine Malcolm unveiled a plaque outside the hotel on Friday, August 2 to celebrate the Maids Head appearing in CJ Sansom’s best-selling novel Tombland.
     
    Tombland is the seventh in CJ Sansom’s series of historical novels featuring Tudor lawyer Matthew Shardlake. In the book, he heads to Norwich to look into the circumstances of a horrific murder and stays at the Maids Head, before getting engulfed in Kett’s Rebellion in the summer of 1549.     
     
    “We have been offering a special Shardlake’s Norwich package since February,” said Christine Malcolm. “Guests on the package are given a copy of Tombland and have the option of booking a Shardlake tour with our resident tour guide, Paul Dickson.”
     
    “The package has proved very popular, with Shardlake fans heading to Norwich from all over the UK, “ continued Christine. “We have even had visitors from Norway who love the series. It’s the first visit to Norwich for many of our Shardlake guests and the feedback that we get is that they love the city and can’t wait to return.”
  • Maids Head Hotel Sous Chef in Norfolk Chef of the Year Final

    Maids Head Hotel Sous Chef, Elliott Winson, is a finalist in the Norfolk Food and Drink Awards Chef of the Year 2019 competition.

    Eight chefs will compete in the live cook off, at City College Norwich, on the morning of Tuesday, July 9. This will be followed by a technical skills challenge in the afternoon.

    To enter the competition chefs had to submit a main course, with a budget of no more than £4.50 a portion, featuring local, sustainable and seasonal Norfolk produce.

    Elliott’s main course features Gressingham Duck: confit duck leg with potato rosti, smoked carrot purée, heritage carrots, pickled elderflower and duck jus split with elderflower oil.