Photographer RonanHD only began shooting landscapes at the beginning of 2014 but when you are lucky enough to live amongst the epic landscapes of the “Garden of Ireland”, (County Wicklow) that’s all you need! After a few scrolls through his Instagram feed, it’s not hard to see why he’s accumulated an impressive following – Producing consistently striking images, that are exquisitely shot and edited, a fine example of how photographs will make you fall in love with Ireland. (…Ronan has even had his work used in a promotional campaign for Tourism Ireland!)


Please tell us a bit about yourself ?

My name is Ronan Harding Downes, also known as Ronan HD. I’m a professional photographer from Wicklow. My main genre nowadays is Weddings and Commercial, but I started out as a landscape photographer. It was easy to fall into landscapes being from Wicklow. I grew up in Kilcoole, which is more famously known as “Glenroe”, so I was never far from nice scenery. I also co-host a photography podcast called The Tri Pod with my mates and fellow togs, Sean O’Riordan and Kevin Hennessy.

What would you say is unique about your style ?

I don’t put much effort in…which sounds mad. I’m not one to practice what I preach, I’m very lazy with my landscape photos! I still see landscapes as my hobby, so I tend to take each shot as it comes and focus on how I felt when I took it. I used to do extensive planning for shoots but now that photography is the day job I prefer to just get out for a hike and see what falls out. It’s okay to not get a shot everytime, since I adopted that mantra I find my style dictates itself and I enjoy the process much more. It also means less time glued to the computer doing time consuming edits, which is a win in my books!

Where are your favourite spots in Ireland for getting those picture perfect shots ?

I’ve never left Wicklow so I’m probably the wrong person to ask! I’m well known for frequenting the Wicklow hills, there’s an abundance of gorgeous naturally scenery at every turn. Wicklow, for me, is definitely in the top 3 counties to photograph in Ireland, if not first! I also love Connemara. It’s another photography paradise. Another for me is the Sligo coastline. The Wild Atlantic Way is aptly named, with stunning rugged landscape and infinite shot potential! For me personally though, I’ll never get tired of Glendalough and Lough Tay. When I first saw the lakes as a child I fell in love. I firmly believe Glendalough should be on everyones bucket list, especially on a crisp winters morning.

Please can you share the TOP 3 photographs (in your opinion) that you’ve taken and write one sentence about each ?

1. First would be my favourite shot of the monastary and upper lake in Glendalough. It’s an aerial photograph that I was delighted to capture as drones are not permitted to fly over Glendalough or the Monastary without a permit. I was lucky to do a campaign with Tourism Ireland and get my hands on a permit to capture this image. For me, I think it captures the scale, beauty and history of the location all in one shot.


Ronan Harding - Glendalough - We Love Ireland

2. My second would be a shot I took back in 2015. It probably wouldn’t be considered as one of my best shots by others, but it means an awful lot to me. I think these days we can get bogged down by likes/follows and other numbers on social media and allow that dictate if a shots good or not. This shot didn’t perform well on social media, but for me it captures the essence of the Wicklow Way and will always be up there!

Ronan Harding - Djouce Wicklow Way - We Love Ireland

3. My third choice would have to be Ballinastoe Woods. This trail has become famous the world over and can be the ultimate test for any photographer. There’s deep shadow and harsh highlights, the canopy often sways in the wind and the weather isn’t always ideal. I think in this shot I managed to capture all of the elements perfectly and I’m very happy with the outcome.

Ronan Harding - Ballinastoe Woods Winter - We Love Ireland

Are there any destinations in Ireland that are high on your list to visit ?

I’ve been to Kerry a number of times, but never with a camera. I’d love to do a week along the south west coast and see what I can muster!

Three people (living or dead) you’d invite to dinner ?

First would have to be Frank Lampard. He’s an inspiration of mine. He’s ethics, work rate and dedication to his career were second to none. Also an absolute gent!

Second would be Sir David Attenborough. Don’t think I need to expand on that, the man is simply incredible.

Third would be Ryan Reynolds. Don’t think I need to expand on that either….


*All images in the above article were captured by photographer Ronan Harding Downes

For more information on Ronan’s work, you can visit his social media accounts below:

Follow Ronan….

Post a Comment

Follow us on