Woodland Photowalk - Millison's Wood Report
On Tuesday 7th May, we held the fifth of the new monthly woodland photography walks. The idea is simple. Visit different woodlands on the first Tuesday of every month, in 2019, and spend a couple of hours together on a meetup, exploring the woodlands and taking photos.
This is the healing way of Shinrin-yoku Forest Therapy, the medicine of simply being in the forest. Shinrin-yoku is a term that means "taking in the forest atmosphere" or "forest bathing." It was developed in Japan during the 1980s and has become a cornerstone of preventive health care and healing in Japanese medicine.
The woodland walks are aimed to promote our senses and connection to trees/woodland/nature - as we walk, observe and take in our environment we may decide to make a photograph, or not. The photo walks are NOT the normal workshop tuition events, advice and guidance is on hand if you ask for it but the idea is to work on your personal connection to nature on your own but, if you wish, share those thoughts and ideas with others there. The relationship between you and the woodland environment is a personal one and therefore shouldn’t be any constraints or tutors ideas of what makes a good or bad photo.
Millisons Wood - Meriden, Solihull
Woodland Trust Millison’s Wood
Millison's Wood was once part of the large Arden Forest, which covered much of the Countryside. However due to medieval sheep grazing and more recent arable farming, only small pockets of the woodland remain. It is for this reason that Millison's Wood received Local Nature Reserve Status in 2002. Entrance off Albert Road, Meriden.
Millison’s woods is only ten minutes from my home but despite living in the same area for twenty years I had never visited before. It’s too easy for me to walk outside into my back garden and into the woodlands that are located behind it. So, it was a real pleasure and surprise to find another little gem on my doorstep.
As the walk was still in the first week of May (7th) there were still an abundance of bluebells amongst the ever-increasing new green foliage from the woodlands floor. What disappointed me, but didn’t surprise me - ( see my last post on bluebells and how ignorance is destroying this precious native species) was the amount of paths of trampled bluebells left by the many who had clearly walked into the bluebell carpets in pursuit of a photograph.
I won’t make any apologies for repeating this and asking anyone reading this to help educate people to take a responsible stand.
Do not trample on the bluebells!
According to research carried out by Moulton College in the Midlands, once damaged, bluebells need approximately five years, without any additional disturbance, to recover fully. Not only does trampling cause a loss of up to 96% of the bluebells’ flowers, but the species also cannot produce seeds as efficiently, consequently affecting many generations to come.
If you see others trampling on them explain why that’s causing damage and how it can take up to five years for them to recover, if undisturbed again. Most woodlands have paths so stick to those and be mindful of your impact on the ecology of the woodlands.
Getting back to Millison’s Wood, you don’t need an array of equipment for these walks. Ideally, you will have a tripod and a polariser filter will help massively with controlling the reflective highlights on foliage and enable a much greater tonal range. As for lenses, I take the 24-70mm and 70-200mm.
My shots made on the day…
I hope you will be able to join me on the next or any future woodland photo workshop. These are different from my normal photography workshop format in that they are not restricted to six participants with my focus being the tuition and guidance of the participants. Instead, these walks are about meeting like-minded people who enjoy photography and woodlands who want to explore, share ideas, chat and enjoy a gentle stroll together. Of course, I am on hand and happy to advise, guide and answer any photography questions along the way.
Woodland Habitats to explore in 2019
Only £10 - Places filling quickly so don’t delay
2019 Remaining Dates:
Tue 4th Jun - Snitterfield Wood - Stratford Upon Avon
Tue 2nd Jul - Ryton Wood - Coventry
Tue 6th Aug - Tocil Wood - Coventry
Tue 3rd Sep - Elkin Wood - Coventry
Tue 1st Oct - Piles Coppice & Brandon Wood - Coventry
Tue 5th Nov - Crackley Wood - Kenilworth
Tue 3rd Dec - Hay wood - Solihull
Share your photos from Millison’s Wood in the comments section of this post.
Please post your photos and comments in the section below this post, even if you didn’t attend this photo walk it would be great to see other photos from this location.
I have tried to find ways, many over the years, to get more discussion, engagement and sharing of images from my readers and clients. Unfortunately my website platform has never been good at supporting such a simple function.
However, I hope the new introduction of Disqus will enable people to now contribute. Disqus is a global discussion and commenting network, so it will also work for you on other websites using
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Or, if you wish to remain anonymous, then there is also an option to post as a guest and you can enter any made up name and email as i have shown highlighted in yellow below. Note you can not upload a photo as a guest.
To add a photo - click on the photo icon in the formatting bar and you will get a browse option to select your images. They much be under 5MB in size and you can not upload a photo unless you log in using one of the social media or Disqus profiles.
I hope that this new commenting feature will make it much easier for everyone to share their photos, add comments and increase the blog engagement so that it doesn’t remain a one way conversation with me pushing out but not receiving anything back. :)