David Speight Photography

landscape photography workshop spurn point summer

landscape photography workshop spurn point summer

Spurn Point is a narrow spit of land which forms the north bank of the mouth of the Humber Estuary, at Kilnsea, in east Yorkshire. Stretching out over three miles into the north sea, and with a width of less than forty five metres at it’s narrowest points, this bank of ever shifting sand forms a fragile and precarious barrier between the sea to the east and the estuary to the west. Spurn is managed by the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust as a nature reserve, and is home to many different species of plants and wildlife, some of which are unique to here.

There are two lighthouses at Spurn, the high and low light. Both are decommissioned now, but serve as striking landmarks on either side of the peninsula. A series of weather and tide beaten, wooden sea defences are intermittently positioned along the whole length of the shoreline, in an attempt to delay the inevitable eroding force of the north sea. The sand dunes that form the majority of the landscape of Spurn, are roughly held together by tough Marram grasses, again to try and halt the shifting of the sand.

The unique thing about Spurn Point, is that there is so much here to keep you occupied photographically, that you can easily spend the whole day and shoot from dawn until dusk, capturing sunrise and sunset at the same location. The wave sculpted, old sea defences are a subject all to themselves, but they also provide a perfect foreground to the views out to sea at sunrise, and also to the lighthouse above the beach. There are always fantastic sand patterns on the Humber estuary side of the peninsula, and these again make a great foreground to the views of the old lighthouse down on the beach. As well as all that, Spurn is also a great place to see many rare birds that migrate here during the autumn and winter period, so it’s worth bringing the longer lenses along, if you have them.

If there is a slight negative, this centres around the access to Spurn. It used to be possible to drive all the way down to the lighthouse, but a heavy storm washed away the road back in 2013, and it was never reinstated. It is around three and a half miles to the southern tip of Spurn, from the visitor centre. There is an area of beach (where the roadway was washed away) known as the washover, and at certain times of high water, access is cut off by the tide. My own preferred way to get down (and back up) Spurn is by cycling. It is however very flat, so although it’s quite a distance, walking is pretty easy and will be frequently broken up with taking images along the way. Apart from the washover, you can cycle all the way down, and this only takes around twenty minutes.

In the winter months, the workshop is timed so that we can shoot both sunrise and sunset. From March onwards, we'll start the day slightly later and work up until sunset. We’ll look to photograph the wider views, incorporating both lighthouses, but we’ll also look to make the most of many of the smaller details here. The old wooden groynes are a fantastic subject, and there are often various other items, such as lobster pots and old fishing nets washed up along the shore. This is a fantastic opportunity to simply relax and immerse yourself in this beautifully unique coastal location, while making truly interesting images that you can be proud of.

As always, group size is a maximum of five photographers and all tuition is tailored to individual requirement by way of a short and basic questionnaire, so you can get exactly what you want from the day.

  • 28th Sep 2024 - Available
    09th Nov 2024 - Available

  • £150 / £50.00

    • Full days tuition

    • Loan of tripod/filters if required

    • Personal accident/equipment/cancellation insurance

    • Transport to the location (I may be able to arrange this if you are on my route).

  • Average - It is a 3 mile walk down the length of Spurn Point, though it is flat. Preferably (If you own a bicycle and can transport it) we will cycle down to the bottom and back up during the course of the day.

  • Full day (approx 8 hours) Dawn to dusk

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