Henry Gilbey
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Henry Gilbey blog

Off to the Nantes bass show

By the time you read this I will be on my way to Jersey and then Nantes in France for the big bass show they have every year - to be fair, it's actually about all kinds of fishing, but I am guessing that bass fishing is just so big in France that the show reflects this level of interest. It will be great to see the guys from Ultimate Fishing that came over to Ireland with us last October, and I am going to do my very best to control my urges and not start investing in any more of their red Tenryu rods. To think that I once prided myself on not being very much of a tackle tart.......

I will do all I can to keep this blog going through the show - we are staying at the same hotel as last year that is virtually next door to the event, so if time allows and their wi-fi works then I will be able to put some of my findings up here. I do remember sleeping really badly there last time because my brain was buzzing so much about all that I was seeing and learning at the show, plus I never really settle that well in hotel rooms anyway. I always feel a little sorry for anybody who ever has to share a hotel room with me, for I am not that great at keeping very quiet when I wake up at silly o'clock. Give me a tent in Outer Mongolia on the side of the Delger-Muron river any day of the week !! But saying that, I do love going to France - such a great country, and such awesome people.

I was out on a photo job last week, shooting another winter fly fishing feature for Trout Fisherman magazine - Russ smacked a load of fish and I got a good set of photos to illustrate his words, but I also had a bit of fun shooting some "detail" stuff with my 100mm macro lens and available light. It was always my intention to convert these detail shots to black and white, and while I know these photos are essentially worthless when it comes to magazine features, when I "see" something like this I just have to shoot it. I have always loved the fact that digital photography is a license to try different things, and the photo above is simply a close-up of the scales of a rainbow trout in a net.

Another black and white "detail" shot - fly reels always look good to me, and they lend themselves to being photographed in all kinds of ways. Both these photos have very deliberate shallow depths of field that I have used to bring the eye in on specific points and then let the rest of the image literally "melt" through the frame if that makes sense. Thinking along these lines is giving me a bunch more ideas for shooting bass lures in various different ways as well - granted, I always have to shoot them more "regular" for magazine features where you need to see the whole thing plain as day, but I reckon there could be some cool ways of showing off various lures.

Photo courtesy Cato Bekkevold

I got an email from Cato Bekkevold talking about some more of this insane ice fishing they get up to in Norway - how about this for a fish to catch from the shore (ok, so it's on the ice in the middle of a fjord) !! Not only is the guy one of the most awesome drummers in metal (for the mighty and peerless Enslaved), he is also one hell of an angler. This halibut weighed 36lbs and it was 111cms long, plus they also had pollack to 12lbs and a mass of cod up to around 16lbs. That's it, I have made up my mind to go and do this next winter..............just need to take some properly warm clothing !! Mad fishing. Oversized flounders on speed.

Anyway, it's going to be a great weekend in France, and I am also looking forward to seeing the Jersey lads and hanging out for a while in Mick's tackle shop before we get the ferry - this is a time for me to show great self-control, because I have a sneaking suspicion that he has a whole load more lures there than I ever realised. Feel strong, look but don't touch and rattle, no more than a casual glance at any new lures, and try to get out of there with my card intact. As if.........