Whitby Abbey has a magnificent location on the headland overlooking the North Yorkshire fishing town. Founded by the Northumbrian king, Oswy there has been an abbey here since AD 657. It was originally a mixed community of men and women under the rule of Abbess Hild, later to be St. Hilda. It became a religious centre of great importance and was the venue for the Synod of Whitby in 664, when the date for the observance of Easter in England was finally settled, after differences between followers of Rome and Celtic tradition.
During the Viking raids in the 9th century the original monastery was destroyed. A new Abbey under Benedictine rule was re-founded in the 11th century but details are sketchy. In the early 13th century, following the trend of nearby monasteries, a new abbey church was begun and built over many years. What remains today are parts of the 11th and 13th century buildings. The abbey suffered the same fate as all the abbeys in England when Henry VIII abolished them in 1538 with the Dissolution of the Monasteries act. The buildings were bought by the Cholmley family, who demolished much of the abbey except the church, and the abbot’s lodging which they used as a house. The abbey is now in the care of English Heritage.
This is quite a classic view of the abbey showing the east façade and exterior of the choir of the church. The South transept which would have protruded on the left no longer exists. The North transept is still there but cannot be seen on this image. I make no apologies for showing this classic view as I really like the reflections in the pond. It takes a bit of manoeuvring to get the full reflection in. Also, because of its position on the headland, nine times out of ten the wind disturbs the pond’s surface. The sea in the background is useful for showing its unique location.
A closer view from a similar POV is in the WS.
besnard, Muse, marjan, pasternak, Butterflyka, wishlist, Buin, riclopes, snunney, luisafonso, Davidwh, Floydian, josepmarin, Tue, plimrn, Dyerco, carper, Partha_c, Photo65Net, gneufeld, melmcree, rushfan2112, jwmunro, scobert, axiotea, bertolucci, Graal, Cricri, ruisc_pt, Didi, Wandering_Dan, alvaraalto, imrek, papagolf21, UlfE, meltemi, grigand, devimeuxbe, Emile, bostankorkulugu, pboehringer, stego, JCG, Davids, jaywalker, chrisnet, marrty, Mistral has marked this note useful
Critiques | Translate
Tibo (1904) 2008-01-10 2:41
Hi kath. What a fabulous picture. I love those reflection on water. A lot of details in this shot. Congratulation, Thibaut
besnard (49939) 2008-01-10 2:41
Très beau cliché de cette abbeye en ruine en bon état de conservation et bien mise en valeur avec une bonne luminosité. C'est très bien cadré avec ce plan d'eau en 1er plan.
Merci pour le partage et bonne journée.
Muse (34936) 2008-01-10 2:42
Un très bel édifice dans un superbe environnement.
Le pov et le cadrage sont très bons.Très beaux reflets de ce magnifique ciel dans l'eau.
marjan (6277) 2008-01-10 2:48
hi Kath, goo dshot, very sharp and excellent POv.
a390herrera5 (0) 2008-01-10 2:50
Hola Kath, preciosa fotografía, bellos colores y luminosidad. Excelente trabajo. Saludos.
pasternak (15165) 2008-01-10 2:50
Excellent view, Kath, high contrasts and the 1:1 frame division make the ruined abbey church look so dramatic! Also I like the "broken" reflection...
barrufeto_77 (28876) 2008-01-10 3:02
Wooooooooooow. Excellent picture. The colours and the reflections are impressive.
deano (178) 2008-01-10 3:08
wow beautiful shot Kath, love the composition and the reflection in the puddle, great work.
cbrman (21637) 2008-01-10 3:09
Quelle majesté dans ces ruines ! Cette abbaye semble vouloir dire que elle est toujours debout après ces siècles écoulés ! Je trouve que tu as parfaitement mis en scène ce décor ! Une image qui donne envie d'aller visiter ces fantastiques ruines !
Butterflyka (518) 2008-01-10 3:16
Wonderful composition with good perspective to show an ancient architecture of the abbey.Good colors and reflections.Wonderful sharpness and clarity.
wishlist (4133) 2008-01-10 3:19
great shot!! Compo works well with the Abbey well placed off center and the reflections on the pond are the classic icing on the cake. Colours are well balanced and saturated giving a beautiful contrast between the blue sky and the green of the grass. I like the way the way the Abbey stands against the bg..
Thanks for sharing this and regards
Buin (42118) 2008-01-10 3:24
What a breathtaking ruin! One can imagine how great this church must have been. Your photo shows its gorgeousness in a skillful way. The silhouette of this gable against this wonderful sky is simply great and the mirroring water is a beatiful addition. a great photo indeed!
Greetings from sunny and springlike Germany!
Paolo (41218) 2008-01-10 3:53
a great shot Kath, with perfect composition, amazing tones and excellent quality too.
riclopes (35567) 2008-01-10 3:54
Olá Kath, of course that I don't know the place, but this POV seems to be the best one. Love the reflections and the sight of the sea in the background. The thing I like more in your composition, is the diagonal of the grass on the water coming right from the corner. The WS is a good complementar from which I like the tiny detail of the person against the sea at right background :) The moon, part of the ruins and a person sillouetted against the sea...(just I shot, I'm imagining ;-)
snunney (72566) 2008-01-10 4:13
Rather a different perspective on the Abbey to those usually seen. And very good it is too. I like the point of view which takes good advantage of the reflections in the foreground water. Very good light and colours. A nice blue sky to sett off the old stones.
luisafonso (862) 2008-01-10 4:21
This is a great shot Kath. You really captured it at a great time. The shadows/light on the abbey are wonderful and help giving it a real 3D feel. That's why side light is so important when photographing architecture. Great composition also, showing the nice surroundings of it. I love it.
Davidwh (3662) 2008-01-10 4:41
It really is a beautiful image and made all the more so by the informative note.As you mentioned it really does have a unique position looking out over the sea. The composition is perfect and you are so lucky to have such beautiful days when you go on your walks.Have a Happy New Year!
marianita (3455) 2008-01-10 5:43
wonderful reflection,sky, landcape.... just ebautiful
ncie clear image
maystroo (329) 2008-01-10 5:55
great colors,great pov,great clear reflextion
sacavem (18604) 2008-01-10 6:15
Its an excellent POV and splendid composition.Kath
The shot is well composed and the sharpness is perfect with well visible details and nice colours. Superb image.
Floydian (30970) 2008-01-10 6:39
Bit late today (new computer arrived with Vista on it), but am back online. Your email aslo arrived 10 min ago...thanks.
This is a veery good one, i like it even more than your previous landscapes. Here we have a very interesting focal point. Your composition is flawless with the wall on the right and the water in front. Beautiful parts of green and a deep blue sky on top...i like it a lot..!!!
indraajeet (1894) 2008-01-10 7:06
WONDERFUL archaic atmosphere created by placement of the Whitby Abbey. there is romance in the air, some people there seem distracting though. nice pov colours and reflection
markstaples (15670) 2008-01-10 7:23
I have always liked this one and saw it for the first time of course on your website. It doesn't get much better than this. Excellent composition, such beautiful colours and of course, the reflections make it. If at all possible, I would have left a tiny bit more space at the bottom, but guess there was something constraining you from doing so. A really beautiful photo Kath.
josepmarin (56471) 2008-01-10 7:25
It is an impressive composition, has a high quality of image and a few magnificent colors. You have organized perfectly all the elements, of asymmetric way, but centring our look on this splendid Abbey and on its reflections on the water.
Great work, I like.
Tue (25798) 2008-01-10 8:03
Great capture of this wonderful abbey. The colours are so attractive and I love the reflections in the little bit of water. The composition is excellent and is that the moon I see in the sky, great detail!
plimrn (21344) 2008-01-10 9:32
As everyone comments, it really doesn't get much better than this. The light is magic, the reflection lovely, the diagonal of water leads the eye to the sea, and is that a day moon? I think there is a reason for classic framing!! It's better to post a well-executed classic frame that to post something just to be unique. It is interesting how much the light has changed between the WS and the PP; that magical light is so fleeting. The note is fascinating as well.
carper (96) 2008-01-10 9:34
it's a beauty Kath,
the composition is fine and the balance is very good in it, the quality is top, very good photojob I like it ,
have a fine evening.
Photo65Net (43120) 2008-01-10 10:29
Superb colors and contrasts, with great framing using the diagonal.
I like a lot, the FG perspective, underlined by lines on the ground, is very pleasant.
Partha_c (2015) 2008-01-10 10:32
Very nice POV with beautiful perspective. Accompanied by a very informative note the shot is full of details to be read and seen.The colour and contrast especially the diagonal placement of the grassy patch is wonderful. Very nice work, Kath.Regards.
gneufeld (15870) 2008-01-10 11:41
A very fine composition here with all the elements of a winner. I really like the reflections and how you were able to maximize the benefits of a strong foreground leading into the image. Great work and TFS. Gerald
mesutilgim (72870) 2008-01-10 13:13
Hi dear Kath,
Splendid picture ! Very good pov and great artisanal compo. Nşice reflections and very good notes.
TFS and best regards
melmcree (18) 2008-01-10 13:43
I'm sorry for not checking out your last few photos, I thought I saved you as my favorite and was wondering why you hadn't been posting. Double checked it and you weren't saved!! I'll remedy that right after I comment on this absolutely beautiful photograph.
First off your note is very informative. I have never been to Europe and certainly have never heard of this great place. Nothing in the US is this old so I can't imagine seeing something that is from the 9th Century!
As for the photo the light is perfect. Very warm and bright on the west side of the Abby and on the wall. It creates some great highlights and shadows which combine for a very pleasing effect.
I really like how you used the bank of the pond for a leading line though the shot. If you follow it around it takes you right to the subject and i really like that. It's something I don't think to do but I really need to learn to.
I'm really impressed with this photo and it certainly makes me want to visit, the true meaning of TrekEarth!
rushfan2112 (2965) 2008-01-10 14:00
Hi Kath. I doubt we get many days like that one this time of year! Love the colours and the vivid, sharp light. For me, you could almost turn this into a square format as all the main interest is on the left side. However, that's a minor and personal taste issue as it's a wee cracker just as it is!
Best wishes, Paul.
dokadak (11518) 2008-01-10 14:36
Amazing color, perfect light a very nice frame and capture... shapness and reflection is extra pound..
gilou530 (34) 2008-01-10 14:45
une vieille cathédrale au milieu de nulle part c'est surprenant en bord de mer en plus, la lumiére est top pour mettre nen valeur cette ruine, beau travail
jwmunro (286) 2008-01-10 18:22
Hello Kath -
Well done! I captured a few from this vantage point when i was there but when I reviewed my Epson 5000 I could not find them. This, I think, is the classic view of the abbey and demonstrates it's size and architecture of the building. I like the reflection in the pond and the slight breeze on the water adds a bit of mystery.
Thank you for sharing.
scobert (5355) 2008-01-10 19:13
The English Heritage and the National Trust should hire you do document these amazing old ruins. Your sharp and beautiful photos would look fabulous published in books. You do as good of job with this type of subject as any other British photographer that I have seen and I believe that your compositions are more creative than most and you are obviously very good at research. Like the old saying goes; "It's not what you know, but who you know". I won't get into specifics about my situation as a semi-professional, but unless you get the support of the right people, you won't make even a part-time living as a photographer. The politics is brutal. I really believe that your images are going to be discovered by someone who will value your skills. I know that you are retired and don't have to worry about doing this for a living but I believe that your photos have excellent potential for publication. Beautiful work!
axiotea (21647) 2008-01-10 21:45
For a split second, I thought it was Rievaulx Abbey, but then I remember the ruin and its surroundings were different.
POV and shooting angle are well chosen to maximise the reflection and the graphical impact. I'm surprised by the slow shutter speed. Is it due to the polariser? Light and colors are just fine! interesting to look at the ws too!
TopGeo (38080) 2008-01-11 1:13
Hi Kath ,very good reception, and perfect implementation of ruins of W.A. the plan possible because the good choice of place, frame and big reflection in water of mainly Temple, Beautiful blue in the background give with the green good combination,
PixelTerror (0) 2008-01-11 1:23
Brilliant image, the foreground pond is a good eye lead and at the same time offers the reflection, and this rising abbey behind definitely has a grand style.
Have a nice day JY
bertolucci (13351) 2008-01-11 1:58
Hi Kath, what a superb capture of this famous abbey! I love the glorious light, colours and the wonderful slightly distorted reflections. It's lovely and classic composition. Thanx for the complimentary image - it was nice to have closer look.
Have a fine weekend,
delkoo (68) 2008-01-11 2:08
The clarity of this image is excellent. Well composed with good saturation of colour and sharpness. The view is peaceful and beautiful .
Graal (92110) 2008-01-11 3:42
very nice composition, an interesting ruins and architecture. Good note. Well done photo. I like it.
hdl (6995) 2008-01-11 4:04
This is one of the best I saw in the last days. The light, colours and reflection are perfect! Superb composition.
Cricri (92041) 2008-01-11 4:46
Je remarque qu'il y a de jolis endroits chez vous,
il est vrai que quand j'y suis allée je suis en restée a Londres..
Trés belle présentation et superbe couleurs, bien cadrer avec le reflet dans l'eau, magnifique
Have a nice day for you
ruisc_pt (10133) 2008-01-11 8:40
Stunning image you got here from this historic Abbey.
The POV composition and tonalities are superb.
Didi (51253) 2008-01-11 10:01
I wish more succes for this nice picture.
Great lights and a very good point of view.
The foreground gives an interesting depht.
Greetings from Orléans
Wandering_Dan (3449) 2008-01-11 10:56
Hi, Kath -
It's only a cliche view to those who see it all the time; to the rest of us, it's refreshingly new!
And it is a lovely shot.
cherryripe (21015) 2008-01-11 11:23
Well composed shot with a nice balance between the abbey, the water and the wall. The blues and greens are really attractive and I like the little clouds in the sky. I think I would have just erased the moon as it's too centred.
alvaraalto (5473) 2008-01-11 14:31
What an amazing place for this abbey. We tried to see this place from the boat from Newcastle to Ijmuiden, but is was too far away.
The water in front with the reflection and the sea behind makes the composition very well balanced.
vincz (19099) 2008-01-12 1:00
Very majestic, very beautiful. Light, reflections, colours what a treat! I love it.
ayansadhu (1502) 2008-01-12 2:12
Again a great shot Kath with utter clarity & richness of colors :)
imrek (4) 2008-01-12 2:52
Love the reflections, well chosen point of view and saturated colors! The view is excellent and the sharpness is perfect with well visible details. Good work!!
Have nice WE!
papagolf21 (79512) 2008-01-12 4:26
Bonjour, mon amie Kath,
Magnifique héritage patrimonial du Royaume-Uni ! Je crois que tout a été dit, il n'en demeure pas moins que la beauté de l'ensemble est saisissante.
Un véritable tableau !
UlfE (14112) 2008-01-12 5:40
Wow! what a magnificent shot. I love the placing of building and the diagonals.Colours and sharpnes are excellent. I perfect shot could not better and one of your best posts. Congratulations!
mortijo (12828) 2008-01-12 6:30
Everything has been said about this beautiful shot! This 'll teach me to visite this site more often....but with all the commotion of the last coupe of weeks this was rather problematic. Fortunately it is not evry year that one becomes 3 times a grandfather! The last one was born on Christmas day.
I wish you a nice weekend:
chawax (16463) 2008-01-12 6:52
That's an excellent shot ! The POV is very nice, with the reflects of the abbey in the water. Very good light and sharpness too. The people on foot of the ruins gives a good idea about the height of the abbey.
Stepan (27210) 2008-01-12 7:26
Impressive ruins, in a lovely place, with a great sunny light. Everything's perfect here...
meltemi (9782) 2008-01-12 8:06
I love how you managed your framing here. This foregroung with wild grass and the reflections in the pond is great and light on ruins is marvelous. The way nature is intertwined with the ruins is the most wonderful thing to me.
Great picture and interesting note.
grigand (18947) 2008-01-12 8:28
A great shot ! The management of light and colors are perfect. The view ad reflect are wonderful, congratulations.
crckt (7216) 2008-01-12 13:52
WOW! Such a pretty composition! I like the angle in which you have captured the abbey. Nice colors too.
Thanks for sharing,
keribar (43841) 2008-01-13 2:21
This is kind of pictures I enjoy so much when I visit the UK, but Alas, the places are not in or around London, and one must spend a lot of time with maps on the road and the traffic. This is why I appreciate them so much. Extraodinary good picture, as usual - Keep well - Izzet
oldsock (575) 2008-01-13 7:56
Incredible photograph! I've never seen such a nice photograph of this abbey from this POV! Very interesing note.
All the best
coco (30437) 2008-01-13 11:56
Nice how you use the reflections in this composition. Also very nice light for this photo.
Well seen and thanks for sharing.
devimeuxbe (58557) 2008-01-13 12:18
What a strange place and a strange architecture. Very beautifull picture with the reflection in teh water.
This post is a succes.
Angshu (52888) 2008-01-13 20:15
The famous abbey! Seen a lot of shots, yet this is definitely an original POV. What I like most are the opposing diagonals of the wall & gate on the right & the ditch on the left with excellent reflections. Both these act as wonderful lead-ins. The abbey looks majestic under the blue sky. The WS shot is good for the details & close up. Good work!
Emile (20348) 2008-01-13 21:21
Better late than never, Merry Christmas and Happy New Year, best wishes to you and your family for this 2008.
Excellent picture of the Whitby Abbey captured with a good POV, very good reflection, colors tones and composition.
Your WS is also an amazing shot.
bostankorkulugu (41300) 2008-01-14 8:49
i watched "king arthur" yesterday (on the tiny TV of the treadmill in the gym!)... so your latest shots impresses me a lot kath... it's been 20 years since i've been to britain... i definitely need to go there for a long journey as soon as possible... and your pics will be my guide:D...
pboehringer (770) 2008-01-14 10:32
classic or not, this is fantastic. The little icing is the faint moon almost in the middle of the image. That makes we wish that you would have had more blue hour mood to make the moon popp more out, but than you would have lost these light conditions that are quite magical. Excellent placement of the abbey so off center, although that is already a natural in your collection.
stego (22556) 2008-01-14 15:21
Oops... I turned my head around just for a few days and this one gets 138 smileys! Not a big surprise, because it is truly magnificent and it even manages to stand up in your gallery. You used very cleverly the lake, its margin and the wall to make a great compo that leads our sight to the abbey. The light, colours and sharpness are right on the spot and the presence of people gives scale and a touch of life. And there is also the moon. It's funny that the perspective /distortion is inverted in the ruins but that is actually nice to the eye.
I like also the WS, with its frontal POV balanced (again) by the lake. It lacks the overwhelming majesty of the main post, but it is very achieved even so.
JCG (35129) 2008-01-15 4:01
Kath, it is still JC…
Splendid place in charge of history and especially superbly put in image. To visit these ruins and to walk in such a landscape must be impressive. Very good framing with this reflection which brings an additional dimension to the building. The colors and the light are very well managed. A photograph, like that in WS, quite attractive and interesting, thank you Kath.
With all my friendships,
rbcy1974 (20758) 2008-01-15 14:15
Happy new year
Very nicely done
the light is quite beautiful
and the point of view is optimal as you capture the church dominating everything around it
Davids (56) 2008-01-16 4:36
Although I must admit I am not a fan of these boosted colors and landscape photography, I enjoyed looking/studying this photo.
The POV is well chosen , although the fasade misses some details because of the shadow.
The note is a jewel, and I realy enjoyed stopping by.
Gerrit (43763) 2008-01-17 3:14
fantastic and dramatic picture. The reflection is marvellous, the colours and light are excellent.
OLF (4017) 2008-01-19 5:01
I enjoy this one, very well composed to highlight this abbey in its environment. Beautiful colors between heaven and greenery. Very good pov and sharpness.
Very good job.
Best regards and good WE.
pablominto (53744) 2008-01-20 9:08
An impressive ruin, that really stands out in the landscape!
Amazing place for a cathedral this size in rural surroundings...
A well balanced composition, and the little pond in front offers nice reflections!
jaywalker (16091) 2008-01-21 10:04
Hi Kath, A lovely view of these wonderful ruins, the photo is beautifully composed with the reflection in the water superbly captured, the light & depth are very good &, the shot has great texture, kind regards Wilson.
ElAprendiz (30) 2008-01-21 10:45
This takes deserves all qualifiers quality it has. Great landscape, filled with light, color and contrast.
A point of view very appropriate, to reflect an excellent job.
chrisnet (21086) 2008-01-21 12:50
Very nice framing of these abbey's ruins, wonderful light and reflections in the foreground, good work.
batalay (33377) 2008-01-21 18:40
What an astonishing view of Whitby Abbey, and is that the moon — the light is on the proper side, as it is on the left of the great structure. The composition is perfect. I didn't realize Whitby Abbey was so isolated.
Bruno40 (6658) 2008-01-23 5:17
Although I have seen this before in TE, your photo has a special luminosity very pleasant to see.
I like it.
bazal (7900) 2008-01-29 23:27
Nice composition where I particularly like the excentered position of the main subject. The ruins of the abbey are really impressive. Nice informative note.
Thanks for sharing.
cam (9041) 2008-01-30 11:18
Another view of this venerable place, but a point of view that is new to me, even if you called it classic.
I like the way you used the pond to lead to the abbey, reflecting the blue of the sky, linking both and also giving a reflexion.
Have a good day
jmcl (14535) 2008-02-07 21:32
So much stuff crammed into this small space .. I bet this is incredibly dramatic at a large size .. that distant moon would probably add even more then. The reflection is great .. so wonderful .. love your angle down to the abbey .. My favorite part is the sense of timeless ruins against the motion of the sky ..
Did you hand hold this .. wow .. at least at this size I think the sharpness is fine .. my technique when I don't have my tripod up is to use the self timer at 2 seconds and breathe out slowly : )
banyanman (7772) 2008-02-09 21:44
This certainly is a magnificent location, and you've captured the abbey in all its glory, Kath. Perfect POV to pick up the marvellous reflections in the water. The light looks much brighter than it must have been given your slow shutter speed. Hope you are enjoying your trip to Tanzania, and looking forward to seeing your posts from there. Cheers . . . David
Asiulus (1176) 2008-03-21 3:10
Beautiful place and you used the light and the weather perfectly, granting you (and us) with wonderful, natural colours. The reflection is great, have you got a shot concentrating on it?
marrty (235) 2008-04-17 2:23
Very nice view on the remnants of the Abbey. I quite like the reflections in the water. But I especially like that you can almost feel the sense of grandeur this abbey must once have conveyed. Regards, Martijn
npecanhuk (56350) 2008-05-06 13:24
I'm thankful for having found your page for I've entered a very good photographer's world!
I've enjoyed most of your pictures and I've chosen this one to comment on for the colors, the reflection of the abbey on the pond, wonderfully cut by the grass and even the moon, so far away in the bluest sky!
TFS - Greetings from Brazil,
derek3755 (2341) 2008-06-09 8:52
it may be a classic view, but the light, composition, reflections are just stunning.
Mistral (15402) 2008-09-08 15:12
Perfect image, Kath!
Eye catching with great sharpness and stunning composition!
foozi (7101) 2009-02-14 20:16
first of all..thanks you very much for telling the technical aspect of sharpening after down sizing. it is something that i will remember for life, as it is a secret to make a sharper small image. Really appreciate your deeds in telling me.
Your photos are always excellent, the beauty it renders like this reflection and perspective. No wonder people like to visit your place very very much.
Such a captivating shot wiith seen lines and shapes. it tells a story of its own.
ecanaveira (825) 2009-12-19 14:23
Really nice pic. The reflection is very beautiful and all the composition came out really perfect. The colours are so clear and bright and the details are so good that you can see the moon at the back.
- Copyright: Kath Featherstone (feather) (51128)
- Genre: Places
- Medium: Color
- Date Taken: 2007-10-30
- Categories: Nature, Architecture, Ruins
- Camera: Nikon D200, Nikkor 24-120mm AF-S, VR, RAW, HOYA 72mm PL-CIR
- Exposure: f/14.0, 1/20 seconds
- Details: Tripod: Yes
- Photo Version: Original Version, Workshop
- Theme(s): Stronghold, North Yorkshire Moors Coast, Architecture, streets, monuments, etc., English Heritage [view contributor(s)]
- Date Submitted: 2008-01-10 2:37
- Favorites: 2 [view]