Island light is magical. And none more so than Ireland's. Ireland's light floods the landscape, luring the senses with a restless presence. The water surrounding and carving through the island reflects back to us the ever-changing movement of the wind-blown clouds and light. Stop for a minute and the settings change: what was straight is bent, light is dark, still is in motion. It is as though an unseen hand directs the wind, the clouds, and the light to harness our attention.
Ireland: A Luminous Beauty is a collection of stunning full-color photographs by some of Ireland's finest landscape photographers with concise text blending history, myth, and a sense of place. Many of the photographs were taken in the early morning light or as the sun set. That hour after sunrise and before sunset, with the sun low in the sky, is known to photographers as the golden hour and favored for its soft, diffused light.
We take a journey to one of the most beautiful places in the world. From the ancient stone monuments of the Boyne Valley to the treacherous stone steps of Skellig Michael; from the distinctive columns of the Giant's Causeway and the spectacularly sited Dunluce Castle ruins to lush, green countryside and fields of heather; from the limestone of the Burren (the rockiest part of Ireland) to exuberant stretches of flowers and gardens; from a moody sea and crashing surf to massive stone cliffs battered by the relentless pounding of the waves, and from steely rivers to tranquil lakes, it's all here.
The Irish respond to this dramatic environment by transforming it into one that solidifies and enriches their own sense of place. We all have this instinct to create our own space, but the Irish have made an art of it. Through the ancient, natural, and cultivated landscapes, surrounded by history and legend, we discover and celebrate the spirit of Ireland and its luminous beauty.