Photographing Ireland

About the land

While I would categorize the photographs on this website as travel photography, I have become a serious student of landscape photography. On several trips to Ireland I’ve been fortunate to study with Peter O’Donnell, a Fellow of the Irish Professional Photographers Association, whose magnificent landscape panoramas can be seen at Walking with him as he points out what he sees, along with watching the precision with which he works, is a revelation. Several of his limited edition prints decorate my home and serve as inspiration to keep learning. I love this quote from Peter’s website:

“The Irish landscape is, in my opinion, our most valuable natural resource. More people visit Ireland to go hill walking each year than come to play golf. We take our landscape very much for granted and always pine for greener foreign vistas. It’s only when you stop and have a look around you see that we live in the most beautiful country in the world, Ireland.”

As Peter says, there is great reward for professional or enthusiast photographers who “stop and have a look” anywhere in Ireland. To me, Ireland is a jewel box; each county is a gemstone that has its own shape and color and is ready to be brightened by shafts of sunlight or muted by the mist. Within a single day you can photograph a rugged seacoast, drive through picturesque villages and past idyllic countryside scattered with farmsteads aligned with ancient ruins, then arrive on a mountaintop where you are likely to be greeted by free-roaming sheep.

You will never run out of things to photograph in Ireland because in this small country, the physical landscape comprises a mix of lowland and upland, of rivers, lakes, and seashores that host villages, towns and a few cities. Just pick out a direction and start to drive. Around every corner, it seems, you will find something interesting, or beautiful, or amusing to photograph. But be forewarned: Once in the Connemara, I spent an full day of shooting and had clocked only four miles on the car’s odometer when the sun was about to set. The land sets the pace.

Don’t worry about the weather.

Even the rain can enhance images when you learn to work with it and appreciate the variety of breathtaking skies and visual moods that it constructs. Just dress for it and bring plastic bags for the camera.

If you’ve spent time in Ireland, you’ll know what I’m saying. If not, I hope this website encourages you to visit Ireland and see for yourself.


Ann K. Monteith
Photographer | Writer | Instructor
4505 Hill Church Road |Annville, Pennsylvania 17003 | USA | 717-867-5079 |