Friday, 30 April 2010

Day 109: Abstract Tulip

I just really like this - it's not technically great because there is fuzziness but I just really liked the lines and the way the light is shining through it and how it almost looks like a fancy photoshop job and it's just that the tulip is dying back now and the petals lose rigidity and become more see through and the light was shining through nicely.

Thursday, 29 April 2010

Day 108: Brownie Badges

I help at Rainbows, Brownies and Guides. Tonight was Brownies followed by Guides and so I took a few minutes while the Brownies were all busy to photograph and rearrange their badges. These are all badges our unit has done in the past. They are currently working on getting their Artist badge. My favourites are the Stargazer badge and the Fire Safety badge mostly because the Fire Brigade came to visit and I got to sit in the driver's seat of the engine and they put the blue flashy lights on :-D

The shadow annoys me but unfortunately all my macro shots with my wee camera where I've had to use flash have them because of the lens being extended.

Wednesday, 28 April 2010

Day 107: Hawk

This is a slightly boring and dark shot of a Hawk landing. It was a long journey back up the country, only made better by geeky stops at RAF Wittering to watch a Harrier flying round and at RAF Leeming where we saw 4 Hawks come into land. It has to be said I rather prefer these done up in red and going around in formation ;-) Oh and I nearly forgot - The Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy Radio Series is good listening for car journeys as is Cyril Bonhamy And The Great Drain Robbery!

Tuesday, 27 April 2010

Day 106: White Rose

My uncle's funeral was today. He had been fighting cancer and unfortunately it won, which it does in too many cases. This is one of the white roses from the flowers from my aunt. I thought it was beautiful and calm and peaceful - very appropriate. It was really nice to meet his friends and colleagues and hear how much they all thought of him in a personal and professional manner. He was very well loved by many people.

Monday, 26 April 2010

Day 105: Cambridge

We stopped in Cambridge for lunch and had a wander around - lunch was secondary really ;-) I have been here before but the only thing I remember about it is sitting next to the river where some punts were moored and my mum getting sea sick because they all bobbed every time another punt went past (not funny for her but rather amusing to the rest of us). There are some pretty cool buildings from what we saw and it would be good to have the time to spend having a good look around instead of a hurried hour before continuing our journey. This appears to be Clare Bridge from what I can find poking about on google - it's nice and pretty and calm seeming which I really like - doesn't seem like it is in the middle of a city. There is also symmetry and reflection and the wake is in the right spot - it's a little darker than I'd like but it was overcast. On the way down we also saw a Harrier fly right over the road really low going into land - that ruled! And then in Cambridge I saw my first ducklings of this year - soooooo tiny - they must have been just not long out the nest :-)

Sunday, 25 April 2010

Day 104: Dept Of Community Psychiatry

We stopped at my aunt and uncle's house overnight on the way down south. They have this sign just outside the back door and I love it. They also have one that says "if you have a train or bus to catch please let us know" in the hall. The best thing about this one was the fact I could see trees reflected in the sign - kinda seemed like I should be visiting psychiatry ;-p I also like all the lines in it - shadow, light, reflection, sign, wall - it's almost annoying because they aren't all straight but I think I mostly like them.

Saturday, 24 April 2010

Day 103: Lamb

Awwwww! Look at the little baaaa lamb! You know I have no idea how the phrase "baa lamb" came about - it's one of those silly phrases used in my family where the origins are either lost in the mists of time or I just haven't thought to ask where it came from. Anyway, I have a lamb photo! This was one of my goals for the spring and although I had hoped for a group of bouncy lambs playing this is pretty good. They were curious as to what I was up to but they were all sleepy and mostly lying down - it was probably afternoon nap time :-)

Lambs are surprisingly hard to get close to - most of them seem to be in fields along roads with no safe place to stop. We saw a couple running along the edge of a field last week and one kinda shoved the other and it fell over sideways, rolled right over and got back up - was an awesome move but we're all going past in the car going "Awwwww! Oh! Oh! I hope it's ok!" and then laughing when it got back up and bounced on again like nothing had happened
. There is also the problem that there is a very short window for lambs - they go from being too small to stand very well (which is exceptionally cute), to being bouncy and fun and playing (which is so much fun to watch), to being boring miniature sheep very quickly. I do kinda wonder where their playful fun side goes...

PS - I'm going to be away for a few days without internet access so I will be posting when I get back on Wednesday!

Friday, 23 April 2010

Day 102: Raindrops

It rained - urgh - at least it was bright enough for me to manage a shot of water droplets - I like water droplets :-) and the stripeyness and the cool dark soothing green colour and the magnification of the stripes in the droplets and the shiny lightness of the droplets and well... yeah I like it.

Thursday, 22 April 2010

Day 101: Flesh Wound

It didn't survive - I was hungry - and it was sweet and tasty - mmmmm plum flesh...

Wednesday, 21 April 2010

Day 100: Kirrie Dumpling

I've only just discovered that this is a type of primula - Primula Denticulata. I only remember that my grandad always called them Kirrie Dumplings. This one was catching the sunlight today and looked lovely although I do wish I hadn't slightly cut the left hand side off - they were quick shots because I didn't have much time. The other sucky thing is that I had tried photographing a bumble bee and got quite a few not quite or not all in focus shots - the one and only shot that looked like it would have been great my camera screwed up. I don't know why but the compact one sometimes doesn't seem to save a photo properly - it's fine on the back of the camera but once you get it off it has lines through it - grrrrr. But anyway, pretty shiny white flower :-)

Tuesday, 20 April 2010

Day 99: Tulip

This was a casualty of the puppy visiting today - poor tulip. But we have it in a vase of water so it might manage to open and fulfill it's prettiness. I didn't have much time today but I snapped a few of the tulip when I had a chance and I like this - it's an interesting angle and I like that you can see all the way down the tulip stem and that you can see the natural curve it has. It's pretty and different.

Monday, 19 April 2010

Day 98: Blossom

More blossom! Probably cherry but I have no idea - I guess we will find out when it has fruit, if I remember to look. Was a rather grey day so it isn't perfect and it's a bit dull but it's better than nothing!

Sunday, 18 April 2010

Day 97: New Leaves

I always think that new leaves on trees that look all white like this before they unfurl look like snow - a strange kind of snow certainly but that's what I think of. They look really pretty catching the unexpected sunlight.

Saturday, 17 April 2010

Day 96: Nuthatch

What can I say? It's a nuthatch! I have only seen nuthatches maybe 2 or 3 times and today was definitely the best. There were at least 2 since I definitely saw 2 at the same time and they seemed to be nest building. One of them was going down next to the burn and picking up mud before flying off into the trees again. They nest in holes in trees and apparently if the hole is too big they will build a wall of mud to make it just right :-)

Friday, 16 April 2010

Day 95: Shadowy Squirrel Monkey

Took me a long time to decide on a photo from today because I took so many (about 370) and because there were actually quite a few good ones for once! Eventually I landed on this, mostly because it is the most dramatic. The sunshine was streaming in through the window and this monkey actually sat still for a few minutes looking around, then actually looked directly at me and I caught it! I am very pleased with this - certainly I think it's pretty good for a shot through perspex, into a room with low light, of a monkey that rarely sits still.

The other 2 I was torn between along with this one are on DeviantArt here:
Squirrel Monkey
Brown Capuchin

Thursday, 15 April 2010

Day 94: Crescent Moon

We've been busy all day pulling down our shed, moving it to my Granny's and getting the new one put up - much bigger and with space for a rocket workshop - hurray! So I really didn't get much time for photos until the daylight was gone but, as luck would have it, there was a lovely sunset and then Venus appeared along with the new moon (about 1 day and 8/9 hours old I think), and if you look carefully between the moon and the telephone wire there is another little dot which is Mercury!

The sunset was particularly nice - the sun was a lot less bright seeming than normal so you could make out the disc (instead of just knowing where it is) and it looked enormous and very, very orange and it was beautiful. It has only just occurred to me that this could either just be due to some light cloud low on the horizon or possibly due to the volcanic ash that has shut down all the airports. I'm going with the ash because at the moment I feel cheated. We get this awesome thing happen - volcanic ash - from a live volcano - that's just erupted - and we can't see it?! Not cool. So the awesome sunset is now attributed to the volcanic ash which means I have seen it and feel slightly less cheated :-D

Wednesday, 14 April 2010

Day 93: Flames

My mum is a firestarter! She was burning old wood in the chimnea today as she worked in the garden so I got in there and tried for some flame photos - they're not easy really - they keep moving! But I got a couple that weren't bad and once the empty foreground of this one was cropped out it looked like a winner to me. It doesn't have the top of the flame unfortunately as the top of the chimnea arch was obscuring it but it's not bad for how awkward it was!

Tuesday, 13 April 2010

Day 92: Cherry Blossom

Hurray! I've been waiting for cherry blossom for ages now thinking that it would make pretty pictures and we have one! I'd love to do it falling from the tree like confetti but I'm not sure there's anywhere picturesque nearby to do it. At least I have one blossom photo though :-)

Monday, 12 April 2010

Day 91: Lizard

We went to the Highland Wildlife Park today - normally I come back with tons of photos of the Amur Tigers - today I come back with lizards! Isn't it ironic that I passed over the exotic species for the native? Well not entirely - I still have several tiger photos I like but it is so unbelievably cool to get photos this good of lizards. They are small and fast and well it is pretty hard to focus on them and keep them all in the frame without the majority of them being hidden by grass or whatever they are living in (we usually see them up the moors where most of the lizard is usually obscured by grass or heather). This was on a bank next to a raised walkway which was perfect for them sunbathing and for me being at just the right distance to use my zoom lens. I actually cropped this photo down because I didn't have enough depth of field to get his (don't know if it was a male or female actually as the only way to tell is by seeing their tummy) tail in focus, but I really thought the rest was pretty damn good. We also saw a couple of stoats running around and squeaking and playing, as did the tiger cubs who spent a good long while watching them and chasing up and down their enclosure fence to keep an eye on them. It's pretty cool to see the stoats so at ease but I guess they have the same safety that the lizards do - they are fenced off and I guess they could think of the humans as being captive - they know we can't get at them and that they are pretty safe where they are - which is what makes zoos and wildlife parks a pretty good place to keep an eye out for native wildlife too!

Sunday, 11 April 2010

Day 90: The Tootflit's House

We went for a walk in the woods with the dog and I got some nice shots of random foresty sunny niceness but this is the coolest thing I've seen in a long time! First we came across a nice carved stump with an oval hole in it, then another tree stump with steps carved into it leading up to a tiny bench with a sign above it pointing to 2 different houses and then a little further along the path there was a green painted stone - this one seemed a little odd and obvious, but then through the trees my dad spotted this house halfway up a tree! There was also a frog sitting on a tree stump before we got back to the car. It turns out that this is a project by a local sculptor, Robin Wood (best name for a wood sculptor ever!), and the Woodland Trust Scotland to encourage kids out into the forests and to look around them and make it fun. However, I say screw the kids - this is my kinda thing - awesome hidden sculptures to find? I'm in! I definitely want to come back here sometime soon to do the walk with all the sculptures on it :-)
For anyone local: Pressmennan Wood

Saturday, 10 April 2010

Day 89: Tyres

I was at a race track today with my dad and we got to drive on the track!!! But not far or fast - we were going to a meeting of one of the local model flying clubs. My dad wants to fly model planes again - he used to when he was younger - so we went for a look and my dad got a shot of a trainer using a buddy system which was cool. I was offered a shot too but declined due to nerves, shaky hands and the knowledge that I can crash a plane in 10 seconds flat in a flight simulator - not on purpose! This is part of the tyre wall. I like tyre walls and the only reason I can think of for this is that they only occur on circuits and I like racing! But anyway, I think they make for something interesting - they are all technically the same round black things but if you look at them they all have different treads and I like the higgledy-piggledy way they're stacked. (Also, they are black objects and I don't think I under or over exposed them - hurray!)

Friday, 9 April 2010

Day 88: Nosy Neighbour

Still not feeling well but I went out and sat on the back doorstep for a wee while this evening while my parents were working in the garden. It wasn't cold which was pleasant! And the fresh air was good. I also got my photo courtesy of Molly who lives next door. She's very nosy and it bugs her no end that she can't see over the fence (which is probably at least 4 times taller than her). So I sneaked a couple of shots of her nosing through the gaps in the fence and they're not wonderful but I don't have the energy to do better and I think it's kinda cute :-)

Thursday, 8 April 2010

Day 87: Puppy Learns Photography

"But I can't see anything!"
"You haven't taken the lens cap off."

(I'm not feeling well today so I know it's not wonderful but it's the best I can do just now. Sorry Puppy - we'll do a better portrait another day.)

Wednesday, 7 April 2010

Day 86: Purple!

It was actually pretty hard to decide on a picture today - I had 2 lined up - this one and a yellow daisy kinda flower and the yellow one is actually better and I really love it but this is just so stunning and it's not yellow which will make a change from all my yellow flower exploits recently! So here we have stunning purple! And over on DeviantArt we have Sunshine in a Flower.

I also went out and did a bit of astrophotography this evening. I haven't done much before and I am learning along with the rest of the recently formed Imaging Group of the Astronomical Society I belong to, but for a beginner I thought I did ok and at least I got what I set out for! Here are links to the two best photos:
Venus and Mercury
Mars and Praesepe

Tuesday, 6 April 2010

Day 85: Preening Swan

Today I thought I would get a picture of a goose - we were walking along a river which is often frequented by ducks, geese and swans and I thought that since I already have duck and swan photos I would go for geese... yes, this is a swan. It was a grey day yet again and the photos were just naff. Even this one isn't wonderful but at least it's interesting and not grey. So swans just have a habit of stealing the limelight I guess.

On a happier note - my Feathers McGraw photo is on the Wallace and Gromit website here and people are being nice about it!!! :-D

Monday, 5 April 2010

Day 84: Feathers McGraw

WANTED - Have you seen this chicken? Actually now I think about it, it is quite ironic that this is made with a hard boiled egg. This is my easter egg - my family may take the decorating part of it a little too far ;-) It's the best part though - the chance to be really creative with it each year. I am really pleased with this one. His head, wings and feet are made from air dry clay, which I had to make on Friday night, and then they were glued onto the egg and he was painted with acrylic paint on Saturday night (there would not be enough time on the morning itself ;-p). I probably should have posted him yesterday but we were having a family gathering and there wasn't time, plus I got to the beach with the dogs briefly so it's far better to use the time and location while you have it - I didn't go out today and so I had time to pose and take photos of him. I will never be a studio photographer but hey, he doesn't look too bad! I have also uploaded him to the Wallace and Gromit website - I don't often draw attention to myself but I'm proud of this so why not go for it while I feel like it?


This street is totally lamer than Shore Street! I saw this yesterday and thought it was funny and wanted to share my intelligent observation ;-p

Sunday, 4 April 2010

Day 83: Cloudy Beach

Was at the beach again today with Fin and Cooper and Aaron too. I took a lot of interesting shots but not many of them were good - a lot were too dark or too light - some days just seem to have funny light where it's hard to expose anything well. This was one of my favourites though - I love the colour and the reflection of the clouds, the fact I feel I could reach out and touch it and get a wet hand, the fact I can still smell the sea when I look at it, and how the seaweed is so artistically arranged! ;-)

Saturday, 3 April 2010

Day 82: Sandy Ripples

Somehow that title almost sounds rude...maybe that's just me *clears throat* We went to the beach with my aunt and uncle and Finlay and Cooper today! Unfortunately the weather was very dubious (heaviest hail stones I can ever remember seeing when we got there) and just really pretty grey, so action shots of the boys didn't come out so well. However, I snapped this and I really like it. It's calm and nice and ripply and stripey and you can almost see the clouds in it :-)

Friday, 2 April 2010

Day 81: Self Portrait

Well as close as I'm going to get to one anyway - this is self portraiture my style! i.e. showing as little of me as possible and hiding behind my hair even though that is harder to do now I've had it chopped. Today I finally bit the bullet and got my hair cut after at least a year if not more of avoiding people with scissors at all costs. On Wednesday I decided I was sick fed up of it because it took about an hour to dry it, I usually ended up leaving it to dry itself because I couldn't be bothered and then did nothing but tie it back because it was too awkward to style it! It was down to the bottom of the small of my back and I had about 12"/30cm cut off and it's now just below my shoulders and I can swish it about when I turn my head! *swish swish swish swish* So today with my nice new shiny hair was the best opportunity for a self portrait - don't expect another one ;-p

Thursday, 1 April 2010

Day 80: Second Ladybird Of The Year!

Well there were about 4 or 5 out and about and there were some bees and stuff so I guess they were all glad of a sunny day! I don't really like this bush (no idea what it is because I forgot to ask Mum) because it doesn't smell so great but then I'm not so good with smelly flowers because they upset my nose and I get a headache and stuff sometimes - I blame it on my Dad who gets that way with pretty much anything perfumed - I take after him way way too much! However, insects love it - this is where I saw the ladybirds last time and there was a bee buzzing about it too so with any luck I'll get a chance to try macroing a bumble bee! I like them lots because they're all fuzzy wuzzy :-) But for now we have a pretty shiny ladybird on unopened buds!