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Dublin: 18 °C Friday 28 August, 2015

This is Wicklow…stunning images of the Garden of Ireland

Michael Delahunty became an accountant…but he was always a photographer.

WONDERING WHAT TO do with the rest of your day off?

Why not go outside and sample some of the beautiful sights the Irish countryside has to offer.

If you’re in Leinster…Michael Delahunty would recommend Wicklow. The photographer is about to publish his latest book, This is Wicklow, which contains some wondrous images from around the county.

A semi-retired accountant by day, Delahunty always wanted to be a professional photographer but he says there “were no courses for that” back then.

At age 14, he saved for his first camera which he bought a year later – a Felicette – for £3.26.

At age 15, two of the five pictures accepted for the Irish Solon of Photography were his.

Through school, university and accountancy practice, he continued to take photos and to hillwalk.

The result?

A comprehensive look at all that Wicklow has to offer – from its town to its waterfalls and its people to its flora and fauna.

“In addition to the places of Wicklow, I included many of the activities available in the county such as golf, canoeing, hillwalking, horse riding and fishing, to show the very best of Wicklow,” the photographer explains.

Here are just a selection of Delahunty’s favourites.

p150 Sun setting on Mullaghcleevaun

p153 A snowstorm approaches the Coronation Plantation

Both ‘Sun Setting on Mullaghcleevaun’ and ‘Snowstorm on the Coronation Plantation’ were taken after Delahunty booked himself into Kippure House when there was heavy snow predicted.

“I drove up there as the snow started to fall. It snowed all night and in the morning there were two feet of snow outside and it was impossible to walk any distance. I had intended to stay for the weekend but the snow was so heavy I had to stay five days and, because one couldn’t even walk, I was confined to the house most of the time. These two pictures were taken out the window of the house.”

p80-81 Father and son on beach

Describing ‘Man and Boy on Magheramore Beach’, the artist says:

It’s so simple and so real: the boy’s footsteps are barely visible on the sand, the father’s footsteps are much more pronounced; the father looking back to the child and the child running to catch up.

p42 Canoeists on River Dargle

“I went to the Dargle Glen to photograph the fast-flowing water exiting from the gorge. I had been there a while trying different techniques and decided to take a break and think about it,” begins Delahunty.

“I sat down, rooted in my camera bag for a bar of chocolate and when I looked up there they were three canoeists who had just exited from the gorge and were re-grouping. I felt I had missed a great picture and the ad for KitKat with the pandas skating about while the photographer took a break came to mind.”

p159 Autumn at Cloghleagh Bridge

This is Cloughleagh Bridge, the photographer’s favourite place.

“On both sides of the bridge the Shankill River tumbles down through a series of small gorges and waterfalls, flanked on both sides by beautiful woodland including an area of beech trees that turn to a wonderful golden colour in the late autumn. I love to go there in the autumn or spring and listen to the sounds of the river as it makes it way down to join the Liffey.”

This is Wicklow contains 200 photos taken over five years. It is priced at €19.99 and is available at bookshops and online from The launch, attended by actor Pat Nolan, will take place at Bridge Street Books at 6pm on Wednesday. 

No it’s not a photo, it’s a 16-year-old’s winning entry to an art competition

Which one of these photos is worth €35,000?

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