I have three photographs this week that were taken at the very atmospheric Magpie Mine in Derbyshire. This former lead mine is one of the most famous lead mines in the area as it is the only one that has a significant part of its buildings still standing.
The mine was first recorded in 1795 although the workings are almost certainly a lot older. It finally ceased operations in 1958.
It’s an excellent location to get atmospheric photographs and on the day that these photographs were taken 18 months ago in September, it was freezing cold with icy drizzle and a wind that cut like a razor.
I have just been up there again and this time the shoot was ended after a couple of hours because of driving snow and that same vicious wind. The snow storm could be seen coming through the hills until it rolled up over the mine and there is nowhere to shelter at the mine at all. Ensure that you look at the weather before you visit.
All these images were taken with a Nikon D800 and a Nikkor 50mm f/1.8 lens.
Atmospheric photographs can be obtained using monochrome at the mine. If the right sky and clouds can be obtained then the remains of the chimneys and buildings give a really dramatic style to the images. Burning in the clouds during processing to emphasise their swirling around the hills of Derbyshire and the mine adds to the feeling of desolation and isolation.
The colour photograph was one of the first I processed using the Dehaze filter in Lightroom CC on the sky. For a few minutes, the sun leaked through the clouds and shone its light on the mine. I processed the image to emphasise this and I liked the way the filter had picked out colours in the clouds. Not one to use for every image, but I think it worked on this one.
A Light on the Past