Whitby Abbey was founded in the seventh century on cliffs by the sea; its haunting remains can still be seen from the sea and are a testament to the Golden Age of Northumbria.
Although Whitby later became well-known as a sea port associated with Captain Cook and the monastery which inspired portions of Bram Stoker's Dracula, its legendary history began with the seventh-century abbey.
The Danes sacked and destroyed Whitby in 867 C.E., and monastic life ceased there until 1078 . The Norman Conquest brought a renewal of monastic life in many parts of England and the Normans began their restoration in the late 1070s.
Soon after Henry VIII separated the Church of England from the Roman Church, he dissolved the monasteries and the Abbey remains were sold to the Cholmley family whose mansion was constructed of plundered materials from Whitby.
The collapse of the nave in 1762 and the collapse of the central tower and west front later in the eighteenth century left Whitby in a state if total ruin until the excavation project began in 1920.
Today most of the ruins of Whitby date from the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries and it’s haunting remains still stand atop the cliffs as a beacon, as they once did.
Tech,Camera: I used a dark red filter with the grey grad to pull in the sky and the shift Nikkor took care of DoF.
Photoshop: In curves I Pulled the toe to boost the shadow detail. Cropped and sharpened.
Critiques | Translate
triptych2003 (1534) 2007-03-08 8:38
really strong silhouettes make this a good composition, i think. i'm not sure about the rocks though. i think this shot would still look great without them. a lot of potential, which is excellent. well done
aimee (941) 2007-03-08 9:01
I adore the movement of clouds in the sky. It gives an nice feeling and a good strength to your picture. The B/W choice is excellent and the POV is well choosen ! That's a really great picture with this ruins in background !
Have a nice afternoon
n.b: for me the rocks are perfect so :)
buzelman (0) 2007-03-08 10:04
Hi Richard...wonderful B&W picture...especially the contrast is amazing! regards Oli
comanu (902) 2007-03-08 10:09
yes, excellent picture.
peter1892 (1681) 2007-03-08 16:12
Good composition & great contrast in this shot, the ruins stand out strongly aginast the sky here.
There's a little bit of distortion in the foreground, the file might be over compressed (showing up as 86kb here).
kensimage (8565) 2007-03-12 1:34
Beautiful tones and a lot of moor atmosphere, Richard. You used the sky really well, compositionally. I wonder if it might be even better if the abbey weren't quite a total silhouette, with just a little detail. Just a matter of taste, of course. It's excellent, and very graphic the way it is. Regards, Ken.
Cormac (26563) 2007-03-21 14:24
Awesome shot! The black & white treatment is stunning, and the building looks very ominous in all black. Very dramatic!
bagpuss (234) 2007-12-02 3:18
Nice moody shot has real atmosphere a very well composed shot well done.
abanibi (749) 2008-01-10 12:46
Hello Richard! You have an impressive gallery with very good quality B&W. Here, the silhouette of the ruins, nearly black, works very well for a spooky feeling. I agree with Craig that the rocks aren't essential for the photo to work. Very good mastery of B&W, as always...
TFS and best regards,
trigger (33) 2008-01-30 7:21
Great shot with a lot of atmosphere. My last visit to Whitby was blessed with rain so photography was limited. Well done.
zebzebar (615) 2008-03-28 15:09
great shot.good contrast.wonderful clouds.
Junctus (64) 2009-11-01 11:49
I like this one very much. Its a multi-pic, not easy to make a good one of these: Dimensions are twodimensional in the scissor-cut ruins, and very 3-D at the lichenated boulders in the foreground. And the connecting field, glowing and flowing.
Textures are multi as well:the very soft sky, the edgy ruins, the soft vegetation, the crystalline rocks. And the striking, authentic (;-) contrasts. Thank you for this! (and I love your informative note on the pic!)