ABOUT ME

I live in a camper van with a couple of West Highland Terriers for company.
My passion is photography but it is a work in progress.
I am always willing to share what knowledge I have and can be contacted through the comments on this post or e-mail ADRIAN
ALL IMAGES WILL ENLARGE WITH A LEFT CLICK

Saturday, 31 October 2009

THE WORLD'S WORST PHOTOGRAPH (31/10/09)

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image   We are staying between Brixham and Dartmouth, the main object of this visit is to catch up with old friends, by happy chance it also happens to be a wonderful part of our country.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA   THE WATERFRONT DARTMOUTH.....A smashing hotchpotch of architecture.

 OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA   This building always makes me smile. How much truth there is in the story I'm not sure. It's said that this railway station was built in advance of the rail link to Dartmouth. Unfortunately they built it on the wrong side of the river. Even the Victorians got it wrong sometimes, spectacularly so in this case.

Yesterday we took the ferry up the river Dart to Totnes, a lovely scenic trip if a rather cool and grey day.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA   The top ferry.

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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERACORMORANT...Dozens of these.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThis tree has been half killed by Cormorants using it as a perch to dry out, the salt effectively defoliating it.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA  Common Terns, and Black Headed Gulls, all chasing the wash from the ferry and the small fish it disturbs.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA   TOTNES.

And now I just have to post the worst photograph I think I've ever taken and I can assure you there is serious competition for this accolade.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA KINGFISHER

I knew I had no chance but they are such rare and illusive birds I had to give it a try. Wide angle lens, low ISO and the little beast in total shade made for this disaster. Still, said it was a goal to photograph one and I have!!! The same one twice in fact, a double whammy I believe is the expression.

Thursday, 29 October 2009

FUN WITH A DEAD LEAF. (28/10/09)

Drove from Bristol to Stoke Gabriel and parked up, you have no maps , firstly because I have none and secondly because I'm moving on tomorrow.

Once settled went for a wander into the village, suspect very strongly that I missed the best bit, seemed a dead, characterless place but am since informed that it comes into it's own when you get to the river. Should have ordered the map! Or carried on walking!

Found a dead Sycamore Leaf and a Spindle Berry, I think the correct term is seed pod, need to learn the difference. Included the Spindle thing as I like colour and had carried it home.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA           SYCAMORE AND SPINDLE...........Me being arty............ or nauseating!!

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SAME LEAF........well that saved me sweeping the floor and cleaning the fridge out.

 OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA             AUTUMN COLOUR......... Quite like this effect, same leaf and a few dead Elms.

Now for the only shot of the day, this Buzzard is almost tame, sits on the children's swing, apparently it stays put even with children playing around it.  It let me get close, if you can call twenty yards close, but as you can see I got the 'Cold Shoulder'..... Fifteen times!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA    I love these birds even if the sentiment isn't reciprocated.

That's all.      

Tuesday, 27 October 2009

THE FLOATING DOCK (27/10/09)

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA        This is the view across the Floating Dock from the rear of the site. Reminiscent of Tobermory. It's called a Floating Dock because ships always floated and didn't have to take the bottom. Lock gates ensure it is always full. The large mill like buildings in yesterday's post are old bonded warehouses. In common with many of our ports Bristol was heavily bombed in the war, this led to hurried rebuilding and rebuilding of rebuilds, it's still going on.

Decided to take the water taxi round the port as it seemed the best way to get a quick view and didn't involve too much walking. Excellent value at £3.70p including Molly, she always enjoys a boat trip.

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There are still many interesting buildings, it would be nice to have more information, will call back when I'm not limping and hobbling.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA     Looks as if this building was the victim of an incendiary bomb.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAAnd this, I like the chimney.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA      These cranes no longer work but it's good to see them preserved.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA As it is this one, it's unusual as it uses chain and not rope. Falls I seem to recall them being called.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA       S.S. Great Britain, not quite as inaccessible as I thought yesterday. She sits in a glass topped tank as the humidity has to be constantly controlled below her waterline. Posh set up, no wonder they don't allow dogs round, dread to think what dog pee would do to all this expensive paint.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA        Her bow, interesting symbols, don't know what they mean. My first thought was the arts, writing, painting, music obviously feature but where the bouquet, scythe and what looks like a sack of corn fit in is someone else's guess. the symbols on her port bow are different. Ho Hum! Solve one mystery and find another!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA      Seagreen is brand new and not quite as glamorous. She is basically a floating skip, she is off to Southampton to shift trash from cruise liners.  It would be great to think that she won't be the last vessel built in Bristol.

  OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA      Whatever the old man might say about having an easy day, cities and boat trips really take it out of one!

Off to Dartmouth tomorrow and will be there or thereabouts for a week or so. Expect some stunning images of Kingfishers on the Dart..............I should be so lucky, for luck it would surely be.

Monday, 26 October 2009

I DON'T BELIEVE IT! (26/10/09)

The title of this blog is courtesy of a British sitcom 'One Foot In The Grave'. Google it. It's worth a laugh.

Arrived in the middle of Bristol and after a few Sat. Nav.  induced errors, found the site and pulled in.

'Hey you!'

'Yes.'

'We don't take new arrivals till noon.'

'Near enough, it's gone eleven.'

'Noon!'

'Where do you expect me to park thirty feet of truck in the centre of Bristol? It's not an f....ing bread van!'

'Noon!'

Suddenly recalled that round here they call their home town Brizol, so pulled in and parked up. I assumed quite rightly that he was only having a little fun with a peasant who thought he was in Bristol.

Got sorted, very nice people when you get to know them!

As is our want went for a limp. We've stopped here because I want to see the camera obscura, the S.S. Great Britain and the Clifton Suspension Bridge. Got as far as the nearest, the boat. No dogs allowed. She's a sea dog. No dogs allowed! Not big on debate and a laugh round here. Not big on letting you have a nosey for nothing either. Ship fenced off like a prison.

So here's what we got.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA       Don't know, the chimney and building in front is I assume a pump house, will take a ferry tomorrow and find out what the mill behind was, there are three of them.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA       Must be the last working ship yard in Bristol, flats creeping in on both sides. Really sad.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA There's still some soul left, lovely brickwork, will give this building another go before I leave.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA Nice hand, better planter, they must have forgotten the flowers.

This is a docklands development and I'm all for brown field development but somehow????

Came back, went out and took these it's no so bad in the dark.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA       OK some noise but guess what? It's raining again.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA    Me showing off, panning, street lights move but the rest doesn't , magic. You tell me? No Photoshop I promise. A bit weird. Good though.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA   For once the pub was open. Guess what?..... No dogs!

Will do the tourist thing tomorrow, take little notice of me, just how I'm feeling.

That is all.

STORM (25/10/09)

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image    It's thirty years since I was last on the Gower Peninsula, I've been looking forward to returning for some weeks. As so often happens, the reality hasn't matched my anticipation. The area is undoubtedly well worth a visit but weather and a recurrence of my ankle injury have conspired to thwart  my intention of enjoying the limestone coastal scenery.

We got out this morning and had three hours of fine weather before the squalls returned. Walked down to Rams Grove, the seas driven by a southerly gale, were most impressive. My spectacles, the camera, covered in spray. So I apologise for image quality, I should have used manual focus as the auto was struggling, never gave that a thought, hence the photographs have suffered.

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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA  The sun came out and after another good polishing the camera produced a few smeary images.

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 OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAReminds me of a miniature Picos de Europa.

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 OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA    Fetching the paper Saturday morning...............First one of these I've tried, interesting so will try some more.

Off to Bristol tomorrow, so should have internet. I will have a look at the S.S. Great Western and see what else the restored waterfront has to offer.

Friday, 23 October 2009

RAIN STOPPED PLAY (22/10/09)

I'm no longer going to mention 'THEM'. Today I was expecting to experience rain showers until mid morning, the wind decreasing and sunny periods thereafter.

To say we have had rain today is like describing Gordon Brown as a Scotsman. It's not been continuous but every thirty minutes the heavens opened. Here the analogy diverges Gordon Brown appears to be continuous, odd in a democracy, as no one has ever voted for him, not as leader of anything anyway.

 OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA                   RAIN.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA                   MORE RAIN.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA                  A BREAK IN THE RAIN...........And a double rainbow, swear they are real. Supposed to be lucky. Another myth, ten minutes after this got the truck stuck in mud and am now waiting for a tow.

Far from a wasted day, photos catalogued, and saved to a hard drive, floor washed and polished, it would just be nice to plan things.

I'll finish on a brighter note as today was supposed to be a day of amazing ornithological images and not one sitting in a van reeking of floor polish. Both me and the van.

There was an Old Man who said,'Hush!

I perceive a young bird in this bush!'

When they said, 'Is it small?'

He replied, 'Not at all!

It's four times as big as the bush!'

Edward Lear.

Off to the Gower Peninsula tomorrow. In common with some others I have no idea what the weather will be.

Thursday, 22 October 2009

MORE OF THE SAME (21/10/09)

It stayed fine until late afternoon, a beautiful if very windy day. The Met. Office were predicting heavy rain showers by noon. If they changed the title Forecast to Guess, it would be a more accurate.

' And now over to  is Sonya/ Peter with tomorrows weather guess. She/he will entertain you for five minutes by smiling a lot, waving her/his arms about like a demented puppet and talking total balderdash.'

Went out at dawn, nothing about and a large bank of cloud delayed the suns appearance for half an hour, so no sunrise either.

Mid morning I decide to repeat yesterday's meander. The sun shone and had it not been for the wind we would have enjoyed a perfect day.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERACAREW CROSS......A Celtic Cross, the Celtic bit describes the circle within a cross, the bit at the top. The decorations are Celtic Knots, in theory they should be endless. Still popular today, this one is a little older 11th century so about the same age as the original castle.

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A couple of close ups, the first is a vertically stitched image as I couldn't be bothered to swap lenses.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA   CAREW CASTLE.....Basking in the sunshine.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA THE MAIN GATE......Most of it.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA      THE MILL........Realized that I never included a picture of the mill itself. That's that rectified.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA      The main power train, the small power take off gear is interesting, it has wooden teeth.

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I am fascinated by the mixture of materials. Millwrights must have had an interesting life.

Few birds around.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA                MISTLE THRUSH........ He wasn't waiting.

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Away it goes..............................................................A BLACK HEADED GULL?.... I trust I'm learning, If one sees a yellow bird, call it green, a black and white one call it yellow, so logic dictates a white head must be black!!

image        A couple of dozen of them and here's another.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA MUTE SWAN......No doubts. Probably one reason I like swans. This one isn't as sharp as it could be, should have banged the speed up.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA         SHAGGY INK CAP.

Found a large colony of these. They are edible, don't mix with alcohol, no danger of that here. The truck ran dry a week ago or I ran it dry. They are also best about half this size. Three inches tall, they don't keep and taste like a slightly astringent field mushroom. Good with onion in potato cakes!

Moving on tomorrow, Friday, so a supermarket shop and on to see another bit of the world.

All the best.