Wednesday, 20 November 2013

Autumn mists

I started a photography course back in September - just a few hours once a week, but I've learnt such a lot. Mainly what all the different camera modes and symbols actually mean, and how changing the aperture or the shutter speed can alter a shot. It's lifted the veil of mystery from F stops and ISOs, and has given me the confidence to switch sometimes from auto to manual.

There've been a few light bulb moments and I've found a whole host of new functions on my camera. Well, new to me. The only annoying thing though is I've started fussing....Is the exposure okay? The ISO too high? What about the depth of field? It's all whirring around in my head. A little of the spontaneity has gone as I over-think the shot. Hopefully practice will sort this out.

My autumn photos reflect how the pattern of my day has changed. I spend much more time in the car now, so, fewer tree shots and close ups, and more landscapes and skies. Our early morning school run is long, but beautiful - winding up country roads across the hilly Welsh border, with sweeping views over fields and forests. It's just one big photo opportunity really: the way the light hits the trees on a hillside; the colours of the early morning sky; sun rays cutting through the clouds; the rolling mists clinging to the valley below.

I've become a bit obsessed with catching the mists - just magical on a clear, crisp morning.

The kids are getting majorly fed up with me,
'...I promise, I'll only be a minute...!'
The mist lifts so quickly though. It would be a shame not to try. I usually keep my camera on auto for these ones, no time for fiddling about.

My favourite autumn close up I think...

...because we got to eat the big white ball. Our first giant puffball-eating experience.
I still get such a buzz finding things like this, and it was perfect: smooth and firm with hardly any signs of burrowing beasties. 
Now I'm no mushroom expert, every year I say I'm going to go on a foraging course...and I'm still saying it, but I felt on safe ground with the puffball, because it would be pretty near impossible to muddle with anything else. 
All the same I spent a fair while online finding out everything I possibly could about puffballs and how best to cook them. In the end I peeled off the tough outer layer and fried some sliced into chunks, with garlic, butter, bacon and a sprinkle of herbs.

It really was delicious - mind you most things are, with garlic, butter and bacon...but it had a soft, almost melt in the mouth texture, and a delicate mushroomy taste that wasn't overpowering. Thumbs up from all those who tried it.

Tasty in risotto and stir fries too - I know this because it lasted for three days!

I'm linking up with Older Mum in a Muddle's wonderful One Week project for Autumn '13 and the Gallery - the theme this week is Nature.


  1. Wonderful pics Tracey. Your puffball is huge, it looks very meaty.

    1. definitely meaty when you cut into them, but seem to go quite soft when cooked. Thanks Fiona :)

  2. You have made me hungry and you are a great salesperson for taking a photography course. Fabulous pictures.

  3. Wow, I love the pictures of the mists, beautifully captured. #OneWeek

  4. I love the photos of the mists! Beautifully captured. #OneWeek

  5. Those mist shots are breath-takimg, that course sure is paying off!

  6. Wonderful pics...The clouds with the sunshine peaking through is amazing!
    Boo Kitty Boo XXX

  7. lovely photos and that puff ball his giant!

  8. Gorgeous post, and really truly stunning shots - the mist is so beautiful, and the size of that mushroom - enormous. Hope it tasted really good! Thank you so much for linking up! X

  9. No prizes for guessing what I'm lusting after - that puffball looks just gorgeous - we didn't find anything that impresive this year.

  10. That puffball is magnificent, and sounds delicious too! I love your mist pictures, and good luck with the course! :)