My Photographic Evolution in Ireland

Words and Photography by Pete Heck
My evolution in photography has come a long way. Five years ago, I was pushing buttons on a calculator as an accountant. Ever since being “deleted” from that career path, I’m now only pushing a shutter button (and getting paid substantially less, mind you), but I’ve never been happier.Two years ago, after purchasing my first DSLR, I became absorbed with learning the craft and bettering my skills. I’ve put a lot of hard work into it – I’ve done some formal training, watched a lot of tutorials and just practiced a lot. The determination and new found passion has turned a hobby into a career path.

So I was thrilled when fellow Albertan vagabond and photographer Brendan Van Son asked if I would be interested in running a five day photography workshop alongside him throughout the Emerald Isle. Not only was it exciting to be recognized as a photographer with skills worthy of sharing, but I couldn’t wait to see Ireland with a new set of eyes.

Our first visit to Ireland was in 2011 when I was still learning how to compose a photograph and all the technical aspects that come along with a learning to use the camera properly.

Now was a chance to not only revisit some familiar spots but see some new ones, use my new skills, and to pass off my knowledge through our workshop.

Five years ago, I was pushing buttons on a calculator as an accountant. Now I’m only pushing a shutter button.

Here are some of the scenes I captured.

We set up on the corner of the boulevard next to this Dublin bridge at dusk to catch the passing traffic.

Dublin Bridge

Lecky Statue in Dublin’s Trinity College.

Trinity College Statue

Mr. Van Son getting the shot.

Brendan Van Son

Capturing Karl D. and Van Son shooting perhaps the gates to heaven.

Shooting Heaven's Gates

Two kids in love hanging out next to the River LIffey.

Dublin Love

A smoker gets some fresh air outside a pub.

Street Smoke Dublin

The view of the Limerick Castle from across the river

Limerick Castle

We woke up early to catch Limerick waking up. This was about at 6:45am and always nice when nobody is on the street.

Limerick Waking Up

Inside St. Mary’s Cathedral in Limerick we were able to get up close with some statues.

St. Mary's Cathedral

We photographed food from Howth, a sleepy seaside town just outside of Dublin. These were fish cakes.

Fish Cakes

And we walked to the cliffs edge to capture the lighthouse. Judging by Karl’s hair it was a tad bit windy.

Karl D in Howth

To finish off we watched the sun go down at the Howth Lighthouse. This has to be one of my favourite spots in all of Ireland.

Howth Lighthouse

21 Comments... Read them below or add one of your own
  • October 21 2013

    Love your photography Pete!

    Can’t wait to see more from Cambodia and SE Asia!

  • Jo
    October 21 2013

    Pete, these are an inspiration. They make me want to trade my point and shoot for something more powerful!

  • October 21 2013

    Wow! I am in love with the last one of the lighthouse. Great work! Can you come to CR so I can take a workshop from you? πŸ™‚

  • October 21 2013

    Lovely photos of my birthplace!

  • October 21 2013

    Great pictures. It is always fun to practice and learn from others. I have loved photography for many years (back to when we still used film). I must say I am definitely still learning.

    I would love to become better at portrait photography because I find it the most challenging for me. Maybe that is because I get embarrassed for taking pictures of strangers in case they catch me!

  • A Montrealer Abroad
    October 21 2013

    Photographs are one my favorite parts of this blog. Besides the fact that I think you two are lovely peeps πŸ™‚ I always look forward to reading a new post because I know the photos will do the destination justice.

    I’m thinking that I could definitely use a couple of tips, actually! Maybe I’ll sign up for your next workshop? πŸ˜‰

  • October 21 2013

    These are brilliant photographs. I have a long way to go before I can join on of your photography workshops, but save me a spot, eh?

  • Ed Graham
    October 21 2013

    Great photos, I’m especially digging the Howth Lighthouse shot. Nice work as always.

  • October 21 2013

    You’ve come a long way my friend. The difference between a master and an amateur is only time. You’re well on your way.

  • October 22 2013

    Amazing shots! I still gotta figure out capturing the movement and lights. Did you often use a tripod for those?

    Can’t wait to see what you find in Cambodia! I was already amazed with some of your Instagram pics (or maybe Dalene took them?) that little girl hidding in the fruit was great.

    PS. Thanks for the great photo workshop at the BlogHouse! I’ve been putting good use to your tips.
    Murissa recently posted..The Rock of Cashel, Ireland

  • October 22 2013

    Your photography is amazing, I’ve always admired it. Congrats on doing a workshop and that city shot with the still bus and other moving cars is definitely my favorite! Perfectly executed!

  • October 22 2013

    I enjoy your blog and your writing, and now your photography as well! (and I do travel photography)

    Keep clicking, it’s so much fun to capture the world as we see it, and then share it with everyone. And I’m about to get that e-book of yours on house-sitting!
    Jim Nix recently posted..The ruins at Holyrood Abbey

  • Renuka
    October 22 2013

    Nice! I appreciate your dedication as a photographer. I like the fresh perspective, too!

  • October 23 2013

    I love looking at blogs with beautiful pictures! Great photo’s!

  • Mo
    October 24 2013


  • October 28 2013

    Wonderful sceneries of ireland

  • November 7 2013

    The Limerick Waking Up photo reminds me of the intro on the House of Cards series on Netflix. Not sure if you’ve seen it, but nonetheless, beautiful photos!
    Wade recently posted..Rich Travel Blueprint: Belgium

  • Wanda G
    November 7 2013

    First time browsing your blog. I love it, the pictures and the writing. I’ve done some traveling and love to share the stories. Probably won’t get to all the places you have, all the more reason to read your blog and go there via you. Have been to the places you shared in this blog. So great to revisit. Thanks Wg

    • November 8 2013

      Thank you Wanda! And, welcome! πŸ™‚

  • November 10 2013

    Great shots, the first and last are my favorites.

  • January 8 2014

    Great pictures, I love them all…

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