What a lovely day it's been. As I walked my daughter to school this morning I rejoiced in the gentle warmth of the autumn sun on my face, tempered by the slightest cool breeze, and couldn't but notice how clean and fresh everything looked, washed by the crisp morning light. I just knew I had to get out to take a picture. It was a bit illogical, because the sky was that insipid, milky blue that unfortunately often contrives to ruin the potential of such promising days in terms of landscape photography. Nevertheless, as soon as I got home I was off again in the car.

I drove aimlessly for the first mile or two with no real plan but becoming increasingly aware that this was not the golden opportunity that it may at first have seemed. I was at the point of turning back when I passed a massive road-side oak, it's leaves all shades of yellow, gold, brown and lingering green. The leaves glowed almost as if they were on fire, backlit and illuminated by the low sun. I stopped at the first available space and hurried back on foot but alas, what I had seen from the car could only be replicated by standing in the middle of the road, which is always surprisingly busy at that time of the morning for such a small lane. Compounded by it's situation on a bend, I would have been reckless to attempt that shot.

Trudging back to the car, I racked my brains. There must be a similar tree in these parts which would be be benefiting right now from the same sunlight. Suddenly I remembered a distinguished old oak barely a mile away, which I had earmarked for just this type of situation some time ago, but had yet to fulfil.

Curiously, the leaves on this tree were in a less advanced state of decay than the example I had just abandoned, still predominately green with just a hint of the autumnal ritual that was sure to come. This green canopy, supported by the stout branches issuing from the gnarled and weathered old trunk, nicely filled the frame to disguise that pitiful, almost white, sky. This was how I had wanted to capture that tree for years, with the light working for me to unfetter the verdant veil of greenery and let it glow in the splendour of the morning. As a bonus, by positioning the camera carefully I was able to catch the sun itself, partly obscured by the leafy canopy and diffracted to give an almost perfect star burst effect. I made my way home for a late breakfast, content that I had at last, and unexpectedly, fulfilled a long standing ambition.