The beautiful Island of Shetland is located off the north coast of Scotland and takes an hour to reach by air or 12 hours by boat from Aberdeen. Norway sits to the east and Iceland is situated to the north west. Both Iceland and Norway are on my bucket list, but for now, Shetland is the furthest north I've been on Planet Earth. Click HERE for a map. I was armed with the Fujifilm X100, the X-Pro1 with the 35mm f1.4 & the X-E1 with the 18mm f2 (and a tenor saxophone). All of the photos on this post were shot with one of these cameras. This kit fits easily into the Think Tank Retrospective 7 (not the sax), along with my iPad, Zoom H4n audio recorder and lots of Fuji Batteries and memory cards. The in-camera panoramic above was taken with the X-E1. The flight to Shetland was one of the smoothest I've ever been on, but probably the noisiest, due to the twin prop plane. It was early in the morning and there wasn't a cloud in the sky. There were more newspapers on board than people, most of which were the band.
On first arrival at Shetland airport you immediately reach for your watch and adjust the time to 1973. It's like an episode of Life on Mars (BBC).
Ships can be docked in Shetland for a while, so it's no surprise that these two decided to play tug of war with a white van, just to pass the time.
The rhythm section stand against the huge fretboard of the Warwick five string bass. Not the fist time these two have shared the same G string! The Mareel is a stunning venue that overlooks the dock & ferry terminal.
Another soundcheck. It might look like specs of dust all over this photo, but it's actually small lights in the stage curtain known as Starcloth. Probably the first pair of self harming jeans in Shetland!
Shetland has an impressively low unemployment figure, but is plagued with one of the worst zombie problems west of Denmark. This one, known to the locals as Margaret, is a particularly nasty beast that can strip flesh off the ass of an ass in 28 seconds.
Back to the airport and time to leave 1973 behind and head back to to the future. I'd like to return to Shetland for a longer stay and to concentrate more on photographing the island and its people. I'd like to do documentary projects on a fishing boat and maybe a local manufacturer that produces something unusual???.
The weather was a complete contrast to our arrival and it was clear that the flight of doom was imminent.
Cabin crew demonstrate the procedures for the flight ahead. A flight that turned out to be the roughest I've been on.
Back on the mainland and safe. The pilot did a fantastic job on this Buddy Holly style flight. The technique of tapping the wings on the runway to check for a soft landing spot worked really well. It was an interesting weekend and lasting memories were formed for all involved. I can't wait to go back to Shetland!