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

Tuesday, 29 December 2015

HAPPY NEW YEAR. (29/12/15)

This is a little early but just in case the internet is a bit slow I'll post it now.
Have a wonderful year and let us hope for a peaceful one.


Once again it is what it is. The sky and river do move, the volcano looks more like a sparkler but there is so much to remember. One of the many things I should have done that I didn't was scale the landscape texture on the 'Z' axis. Then the computer refused to render using the GPU so I had to wait twenty hours for the blasted video to render at 150 samples. It could have done with twice as many.
It's the thought that counts and as the rain falls I'll try and do another one that looks a little more grown up.

Tuesday, 22 December 2015

MUCH POSHER. (22/12/15)

In these long dark days of rain and sleet there is little to do but make a fool of oneself.
I love playing in Blender and all non linear video editors but I have to be on my toes.
I am slowly getting used to the node editor. This is a feature and a powerful one in all editing software. It is not a one click job. I was playing today in BLENDER and blew it I had sculpted a plane popped another in for my water and created text and fireworks, It never comes out like I think it will. I can only render a ten whatsit go in anything like real time and a ten sample render doesn't show what a two hundred one does.
I found motion blur in the camera settings and gave it a tick. Silly me this was half a second of exposure and a tad too much; I have just popped a glossy texture on the wee river and a diffused one on the landscape. I'll polish it up before New year. There are a couple of fireworks in these stills and the job is on about six layers. Blender is slightly annoying in that it doesn't seem to allow naming of layers.  
I have done the lettering but that was crap. The texture on the water and the land needs a lot more work. Hey Ho I have a week or more to do it. 
This is a monster of an image and I know I have to adjust the key frames for the right hand firework tone down the left hand one And make the text reflect. No worries......My head is spinning but I'll keep trying to stop it.
What is the little bright bob on the right? I know, it's my other firework. It should have been away at frame 175 bet a pound to a shilling I've got discombobulated,  Blender, yet again.

Monday, 21 December 2015

MERRY CHRISTMAS. (21/12/15)

A still for those with slow internet.
Below is a twelve second video. It is what it is, I know you aren't interested in the trials and tribulations.
Have a great Christmas, I will now make another start on the New Year video.

Monday, 14 December 2015

BLUNDERING. (14/12/15)

Yesterday was exceptional, freezing cold, windless and sunny. We had a good three hour walk and then decided to have a few hours 3D modelling or blundering about in Blender. I thought of a way to get particles out of just the points on the star and not the centre vertices as well but then decided to use light instead. 

I modelled the star like this then cut the tips off. I can't get a clean cut as you can see but I then decided to experiment with a sphere as that would be easier to model. I'll have another go at the star later on. I have almost decided not to use the tree but to pop the text under a revolving star and have it flashing colours. I found by accident that if I have an emitter animate it and put a sine wave into the graph editor and raise it's amplitude above 1 then it lights up at values over 1, easy and controllable. I would rather have a square wave and will look into the matter.
This is what it looks like using a sphere,  a bit like a disco ball.
I can have an infinite number of effects but render times are horrendous about 1.5 minutes a frame at 1280x720 and 100% resolution with 100 samples. These stills are 500 sample renders and take over ten minutes. I'll have to work something out or just leave the final scene rendering all day.
This is a ten sample render and very noisy as a consequence. I would like to have made it a GIFF file but I can't get the size down under 27MB which is far too large for the web. It also skips a bit as I can't key frame it revolving 360° as the blasted computer thinks it hasn't moved I have to use 359.5°. I will try and take the first few frame reverse them and stick them on the end, that may help but won't reduce the GIFF file size.

I am getting quite fast at this job but still don't really understand what does what in Blender, I don't understand what half the terms mean so just have to alter values and see what happens. I am enjoying myself so that is all that really matters.
Have a good week.

Friday, 11 December 2015

THE TREE. (11/12/15)

The internet is still very hit and miss and the weather is miserable.
I have spent several hours making a Christmas tree for the card scene. It is not easy and the way I did it it really gave the computer a hammering, I was having crashes every ten minutes. I used curves then converted them to a mesh. I did try and add leaves in the sapling generator but there was no way it would have it…………far too much to handle. I eventually put the needles on the tree branches but not the trunk using hair particles. It’s not brilliant but  as it’s 3D I can rotate it, scale it squash or extend it and get lots of different trees or the same tree looking different.

I am happy to have got a result at all. I just wish I had written down what I settled on. If I do another then I’ll have to start guessing all over again. It will enlarge with a click but then it doesn’t look too good.

It passes wet and cold days on. Have a good weekend.

Wednesday, 9 December 2015

SWAMP. (09/12/15)

The weather does not improve though it appears the internet connection is marginally better.
The walk in the forest is getting more akin to a paddle. This is a dry bit in a rare glimpse of the sun.
Another dryish bit.
There aren't any fish or ducks........The alligators have eaten them all.

I am making my Christmas video and as is the norm when I get near Blender it's three steps forward and two back. This is quite normal so to illustrate that progress is being made here is the newest video.
I put highlights on the lettering to represent snow but as you can see they are lowlights. I never noticed until I got it uploaded. I am halfway to sorting the sparks or snow flakes. I have to use a particle info node on another something it can be any mesh body but it as to be on the same layer and out of camera view. 
It's still raining.

Monday, 7 December 2015

STAR MAKER. (07/12/15)

The rain pours down again but I am getting quicker with Blender. This post is going to be very nerdy. Nerdy and boring.
I have made a much better star. Last time I found a star in Add> Mesh> extras> Simple Star, deleted all but the front face; selected the centre vertex and extruded it.
Like this.

Then I duplicated and flipped the copy through 180° and messed for ages getting them lined up close enough to join them….It’s almost impossible. Then I mirrored the image to end up with ten points but it wasn’t what I fancied.
This morning I started off the same but once I’d loaded the star I reduced the centre diameter added a couple more points, converted it to wire frame selected the central vertex and extruded it then I did the same on the other side and finally scaled the whole thing on the ‘Y’ axis to get a thin star. I duplicated it rescaled and rotated the duplicate and then stuck them together, much better.





So far so good I then animated it and added a particle system so it sprays little sparks from the vertices, I could have done with it not spraying from the centre ones but you can hardly tell if I adjust the camera angle judiciously. Like a dog with two tails I was.
I even managed to give it a material using the node editor.

I love the fact that I can have as many editing screens open as I like.If I had room and money for a monitor twice the size life would be a dream. This is about the limit on a 23” screen. From top left they go rendered view, Node editor….I can’t really work it but it is good fun. Then at the bottom I have the star in object mode and last off all the time line. The yellow Key frames have several attributes for rotation, position and scale. If you want to see them and edit them You can create another little window and use either the Dope Sheet or Graph Editor. It is possible to delete key frames in the time line by popping the time marker over it and then hitting the space bar to bring up yet another sub menu but it isn’t a good way to go on as it destroys all the information in the key frame and not just the bit you are having trouble with.
I then set it to render.


This is it doing it and saving to the Desktop. I had a bit of a cuckoo as I forgot to change the file from PNG to H265 so whilst I put the kettle on it started filling the desktop with png. images. The times I do that! I’ll have to look in Preferences and see If I can’t change the default to AVI. I usually render at 1080 as it gives me plenty of file to move around when compositing a final video at 720 or whatever I use for YouTube. I also make the World or background black as I can then just change the blend mode to screen to get stuff underneath showing through.

Now I have a serious problem. It isn’t rendering the particles like what it oughta. It isn’t rendering them at all in Cycles Render and if I use Blender render it makes them haloed and not what I want.
I'll sleep on the problem it's siesta time and a little snooze usually sorts things.

Sunday, 6 December 2015

DRAFT. (06/12/15)

It is almost a year since we have had wind and rain like the last downpour.
I spent most of the time drying out and playing in Blender. I didn't do very well but here is a draft card in case I can't do better.
Have a good week.

Friday, 4 December 2015

INSULTS. (04/12/15)

I have always enjoyed a good slanging match so today I’m going to reply to Dithery as he has labelled me and thousands of others terrorist sympathisers.

Piss off you spoon faced piggy poker.

There that’s that done. They will never learn and I haven’t got the energy or the opportunity to teach the bombers from either side the stupidity of their ways but I do know that it is impossible to bomb away ideas or ideals. The money spent on bombs would be better spent providing water, food and education. It would be far better spent on an alternative industry to the arms industry, I recognise that that is not going to happen in my lifetime.

It’s not been a very nice week, plenty of water here. Too much.

_MG_2487Why the dogs spend ages rolling in snow then return to the van and start pawing at the heater vents is a mystery.

A couple of days ago this grand machine came to trim the hedges.

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It not only did the hedges but left pretty patterns.

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Tidy hedges.

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That’s all for today enjoy the weekend.

Wednesday, 2 December 2015

SNOW GO. (02/12/15)

After three days of wet snow it has now all gone. I haven’t had very much internet, It always seems to act up in damp conditions.

I have one picture that I snapped just after the main snowfall as the clouds moved away._MG_2467

The rest of the time it has been sleety and foggy.

_MG_2466MARTY does produce the most wonderful composite images so thought I would have a go. Not very good but the best I managed. I never got MathMap into GIMP. I have given up for the time being. I was sorting through some old images and found lots of things I had completely forgotten about here is one of them.

The view from Smoo Cave Durness.

_V0G7026_7_8_tonemapped copy

I am writing this at four in the morning, rain is forecast and has just started but it has got warm. Later on I have to go and get dog food and something for me to eat.

I’ll try for some pictures later on this afternoon.

Sunday, 29 November 2015

SNOW. (29/11/15)

It’s snowing quite hard this morning. The first real snow of the winter.

See the pretty snowfakes
Falling from the sky;
On the wall and housetops
Soft and thick they lie.
On the window ledges,
On the branches bare;
Now how fast they gather,
Filling all the air.
Look into the garden,
Where the grass was green;
Covered by the snowflakes,
Not a blade is seen.
Now the bare black bushes
All look soft and white,
Every twig is laden,
What a pretty sight!

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Hopefully the sun will shine later and I’ll be able to see far enough for a landscape picture or two.

Saturday, 28 November 2015

NO FUN. (28/11/15)

I still haven’t managed to get MathMap to work. I think after several goes I have found out why. I am on 64 bit Windows and there are no bin dll. files for 64 bit only 32 bit. GIMP is 64 bit and that works fine. I’ll have to reinstall it as some files have got into Adobe Elements. If I wanted to do that I wouldn’t have a chance. I have looked on the internet and some folk seem to think Mathmap will work in 64 bit but I can’t get it to run. Not to worry. I do have PhotoSpiraysis and I could try and get some better results out of Ultra Fractal. It’s a pity as MathMap has a mini compositor for combining filter effects. It will work as a stand alone programme on Macs but I can’t afford a Mac just for a filter. Can’t afford a Mac at all.

Here is one I did this morning.

PhotoSpiralysis (3)

Whilst having a quick look at GIMP 2.8 I found this filter It’s a one click job and may come in handy for something.

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It is really vile here, the overnight sleet has turned to heavy rain and both the dogs and I are damp and miserable.

I hope the weather is better where you are.

Wednesday, 25 November 2015

MORE FUN. (25/11/15)

Yesterday I was reasonably pleased with finding the PhotoSpiral thingy application but it was lacking an important command…………No it wasn’t, it was me being thick. If you look very closely you will see a tiny red dot and if you click and drag then it will shift the centre of the image. This is a necessity in any of these algorithms. Usually you have to draw a selection. Those that have had a play will have given all the sliders a shove this way and that. You will have noticed that the Magnification slider does not magnify the image but it does increase the number of iterations so your image gets smaller but with many more of them.

This is always a problem for me with any software and some hardware as many of the developers/manufacturers have English as a second language; think a person like Trump but one that has more intelligence than Trump. Most of humanity and nearly all invertebrates I suspect.

I struggle with stealing and pasting HTML and just when I think I am getting there we get HTML 5. Most things are backwards compatible but the other day I found something that wasn’t. Should have written it down but that wouldn’t have helped as I use pads of plane A4 paper, write on both sides and then rest a coffee cup on them, when there is no more space, use a biro over the pencil, coffee and beer stains. An A4 pad lasts me a year but is about as much use as my Desktop on the machine. I end up with icons on top of icons and I’ve yet to find a virtual tool like a squeegee to scrape them up to one side and spread them out again.

Back to the PhotoSpiral whatsit.

25-11-2015 11-24-57

Yes it’s hard to spot but does glow brighter when you click it.  I was just playing again and this is what it made.

PhotoSpiralysis (2)

No use on it’s own but depending on the resolution I can get out of it I can imagine having a video title shooting from the centre and stopping on a zoomed out or in road.

Having ascertained that Adobe won’t let me use Pixel Bender I downloaded Gimp and a cracker of a filter called MathMap. I know it can eat this job as I’ve seen the results. I used to use GIMP and got seduced by a free copy of Photoshop Elements 4. Elements did me for years with annual updates and I forgot about GIMP. It is still a bit tatty round the interface but then so is Photoshop. Down loading and installing was a three click job from start to finish. It knew I was on Windows 7, It knew I was on 64bit…..It knew my grandma’s shoe size and it’s free.

I wish, Oh how I wish I could be computer literate. I unzipped MathMap and sent it to my desktop. After twenty minutes I found it and opened it. I opened up GIMP; looked in my ‘C’ drive and was thrilled to find it there. I then thought all I have to do is drag the MathMap bit into the file folder called Plug-In. No. Gimp doesn’t have a plug in folder. I created a new folder called Plug In, then noticed the unzipped MathMap had a Plugin file so just dragged that into GIMP’s list of files then popped MathMap file into there. Re-booted the bloody machine and still I can’t find MathMap Droste Effect and to add insult to injury I can’t recall where I put the bloody file. It’s not where I thought I did so that is why the blasted Gimp can’t find it in Filters. I had this trouble a couple of years ago getting fonts into Photoshop. Blender is easy it doesn’t bother loading an access path, I just type the words then click on a wee box and all my fonts show up then I pick one and job done.

There is likely to be a bit of a delay before I get things sorted, I’ve got muddled up. It would be sorted much faster if I had a clue what I was doing, were better organised, educated and a bit more non thicker. I’ll have a rest, get on t’internet and ask some bugger on a forum how you do it. If the bugger is as smart as they profess to be he’ll know where the MathMap folders have disappeared to.

I guess more fun tomorrow.

Tuesday, 24 November 2015

FUN. (24/11/15)

This is a quick post for those that haven’t seen the Droste Effect before. There used to be an excellent plug-in for Photoshop but is no longer supported by versions after CS5. Ultra Fractal can do them but it is a real pain and not very controllable when compared with Pixel Bender---Droste Effect. This is a quick online creator from PhotoSpiralysis. It has been around for ages but required your browser to support Silverlight and not many do these days. THIS VERSION works fine in Chrome. Upload an image and play with a couple of sliders and you will get something like this to save.

PhotoSpiralysis

This is what it looks like.

24-11-2015 12-06-21

It doesn’t name files uniquely so after you have clicked Create Final Image, rendered it and saved it you will want to open it in your photo editor and give it a unique file name. This is not that big a chore as the images are PNG file extensions and are a bit big for Blogger though it will accept them.

house

It’s nothing like Math Map in Pixel Bender you can’t really do very much with it but it would just about suffice in a composite. It appears to be free and is worth a bit of a play.

Monday, 23 November 2015

HO HUMM. (23/11/15)

It has been a cool clear and sunny weekend but despite wandering around I have very few pictures to show for it.

A LITTLE BIT OF SNOW.

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WET WOODLAND.

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THE DOGS.

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That’s all for today, I’ll go before I say anything about Hameron and ConAir.

Thursday, 19 November 2015

HAPPY DAY. (19/11/15)

Yesterday I could have happily curled up and died. The weather was awful and so was the news. Today is a gorgeous spring day in autumn. The van doors are open and so are the windows and everything is drying out in the sunshine. I am just back in from a short wander, I took the medium format camera but didn’t use it. The light is reasonable but not astounding. I got a couple of images that given a slightly lower angle of the light may make a decent black and white negative. The weather is mixed but with some sunshine for the next few days so hopefully with strong winds forecast there may be some good landscapes to be snapped.

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I am going to have a go with the enlarger and printing malarkey tomorrow. I have given Ian a memory stick with a negative on it so that he can print it for me onto film. The ink has to dry for a day apparently. I will then have another go at contact printing a bromoil mess. He has also purchased a UV lamp to use for exposing the image. Last time I just sandwiched everything together and left it in the sunshine for half an hour, this should speed things up and be controllable. I forgot but ought to have printed a load of those strips that go from white to black so that I could do a test run across the bromoil treated paper with different exposure times. It has all the makings of an entertaining afternoon. I have also got some of those gloves that mechanics wear. I have only just lost the black on my fingers from the stuff that I used three weeks ago.

Wednesday, 18 November 2015

BLUE SKY. (18/11/15)

I was going title this ‘TERROR.’ Thought we have all had enough of that horrific malarkey. I agree that what happened in Paris, Beirut and Ankara is truly awful. Thought I would look ‘Outside The Box.’

Had it happened in New York then god help us or perhaps he doesn’t need to apart from a nod towards condoning a bit of torture. Topping malefactors and Guantanamo’s dubious criminal incarceration…That made a big difference. Of course it did…….Think a bit…It made things worse.

It’s a great book the bible it allows one to condone what one wants. You should not kill. Pretty obvious. Christians are killers. How come? Killing seems to come as second nature to people with power as long as they are once removed. I don’t know about adultery. Well I do but know it is naughty and just brilliant. God said that was really bad. Moses didn’t say how much fun it is. Bugger all he knew about it.

Humanitarians have to fight to stop the nasty folk. Any time you see antisocial behaviour don’t hesitate and dive in.  . Come on; get over it. Infra something heart disease  kills everyone much quicker , definitely sooner than the individual anticipated. I suspect most American fast food outlets kill more folk in a year than a terrorist could wish for. Roads and cars do. I have been looking at Mersad’s blog and no wonder they die young. They are eating processed food disguised by salt and sugar. I don’t feed my dogs on that shit.

Here is a little snap. It’s called …..

POWER

_MG_2415

It’s just a pylon.

I know I’m an atheist but also looked after white skinned and brown skinned ones all over the northern hemisphere. I saw some die, sickening it was but I was near to a full throw up at pictures of Dithery’s tears at a football match. We bloody won  2-0 a white wash. He should have been cheering.

God Almighty. He is our leader and not even a mediocre actor. I would have stood to attention and saluted. No tears. Should we dispose him or just ignore him? As an afterthought what was our next but one thinghy doing there popping a posy down? Threat. Nil. How they you would like them to think the Islamic nutters are a threat. Just a load of towel heads pissing about. Unlike Dithery I have been amongst them. They are nice people. Better than hoorays and a bit smarter.

They are having a bit of a laugh at the expense of infidels. They will be let off it it suits pocket lining politicians

Monday, 16 November 2015

PEACE. (16/11/15)

I haven't posted for a few days as I have not had anything to say that could begin to describe my horror at recent events. I still haven’t anything constructive to contribute and sadly from all I’ve read neither has anyone else.

I wish for peace.

PEACE.

_MG_2410

Thursday, 12 November 2015

MOVEMENT. (12/11/15)

I think I’m getting towards a movement.

I have looked at dozens of these damn things and the ones that move all seem to have exaggerated shading round colour. I think this does creep a bit, more of a fart than a proper movement but let me know what you think………..please say it creeps.

GRpat

This is the pattern. It isn’t perfectly symmetrical but good enough to play with. The patterns have to be tileable, by default they are but you know what I mean they have to link up as……there’s a word for it………they use it in 3D UV unwrapping…Can’t recall. I will have another go. I’m thinking of two ellipses in contrasting colours then the white bits will tile to look like the black bit.

I then dropped them in a new file extended the canvas up 30%, inverted it and converted to polar coordinates and added a bit of a twirl. If anyone is having a go then lets see one that really shifts.

This is what I got.

opart12

It is actually two of the polar distorted images with the top one rotated 33+°. and it’s opacity dropped. Don’t think it makes any difference. It does move if you nod your head or scroll it so I am thinking a more symmetrical tile pattern and smaller tiles. It’s a start.

Have fun.