ARCHIVE 346 – KILIMANJARO (MONO)

 

 


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Mt Kilimanjaro, Africa’s highest mountain, seen from Kenya’s Amboseli Game Reserve; July 1978.

There is another Kilimanjaro image here .

Click onto the image to open a larger version in a separate window.

Technique: OM-1 with 75mm-150mm Zuiko lens; Agfa CT18 colour slide rated at 64 ISO; converted to mono in Silver Efex Pro 2.

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STILL LIFE 198 – MEGALITH 5 (MONO)

 

 


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Amongst the prehistoric ritual stones at Stanton Drew, in the Chew Valley south of Bristol.

Other images of these ritual stones are here: 1  2  3 4 .

More info about this prehistoric site is here .

Click onto the image to open a larger version in a separate window – recommended.

Technique: X-T1 with 10-24 Fujinon lens at 14mm (equiv); 200 ISO; Lightroom, using the Velvia/Vivid film simulation; Silver Efex Pro 2, starting at the Tin Type preset; Stanton Drew, in the Chew Valley south of Bristol; 6 Nov 2017.

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STILL LIFE 188 – MEGALITH 4 (MONO)

 

 


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Amongst the prehistoric ritual stones at Stanton Drew, in the Chew Valley south of Bristol.

Other images of these ritual stones are here: 1  2  3 .

More info about this prehistoric site is here .

Click onto the image to open a larger version in a separate window, and click onto that image to enlarge it further.

Technique: X-T1 with 10-24 Fujinon lens at 15mm (equiv); 200 ISO; Lightroom, using the Provia/Standard film simulation; Silver Efex Pro 2, starting at the Full Dynamic Harsh preset and adding a light coffee tone; Stanton Drew, in the Chew Valley; 6 Nov 2017.
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ARCHIVE 334 – RIFT VALLEY LANDSCAPE, KENYA (MONO)

 

 


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View eastwards across the rift valley in Kenya, showing Lake Elmenteita, a soda lake in the rift floor, with the eastern escarpment of the rift dimly seen in the far distance; probably late 1970s.

Each of the small cones on the far side of the lake, and the slightly higher ground immediately left of the lake, is a separate volcano.  The whole of the rift floor is volcanic, with liquid rock (magma) pushing up from deep inside the Earth through the fracture in the Earth’s crust that is the rift valley.  Magma erupting onto the Earth’s surface is known as lava.

Click onto the image to open a larger version in a separate window.

Technique: OM-1 with 28mm Zuiko lens; Agfa CT18 colour slide rated at 64 ISO; converted to mono in Alien Skin’s Exposure 2.

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ARCHIVE 332 – SQUALL COMING, TADHAM MOOR (MONO)

 

 


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Squall approaching, Tadham Moor, Somerset Levels; 29 Apr 2016.

I was down on the Somerset Levels last week on a cold, wet and blustery morning.  There were bare winter trees, there were fierce hailstorms too and, to my astonishment, my journey over the higher ground of the Mendip Hills had been accompanied by snowfall.  And yet all of this was only two days away from (what we Brits can only hope will be) May’s rising warmths and softnesses!  There are times when you just have to laugh at our British weather – if only because the alternative would be to weep.

Anyway, I was out on Tadham Moor, having a hot drink while sheltering behind my car from the gusting wind, when there was a perceptible stirring behind me, followed by a sudden and urgent freshening of the air.  I turned, saw this scene, and had time for a few hurried frames before those dark, trailing curtains translated into what they so clearly were – and my car was buffeted and rattled by a furious, near-horizontal deluge that lasted a minute or two and then raced on.

I wonder if summer is actually coming this year?  You never quite know in the UK.

Click onto the image to open a larger version in a separate window, and click onto that image to enlarge it further.

Technique: D800 with 70-300 Nikkor lens at 300mm; 1600 ISO; Silver Efex Pro 2, starting at the Full Dynamic Harsh preset, and giving the result the look of Kodak Plus-X 125PX Pro black and white film.

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ARCHIVE 331 – CLOUD, BLASTED BY THE SUNRISE

 

 


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This is amongst my favourite pictures, and rather than writing more about it I’ll let my words from its previous outing stand:

Cloud caught in the rays of the rising sun, over our garden; 5am, 7 Jul 2005.

This picture shows a pure, powerful, raw, Minimal, natural beauty that blows me apart – if I’m looking for worthwhile things in life, here is one, one of my favourite pictures!

I like the blue and pale orange colour palette. And to increase the picture’s effect I’ve rotated it 90 degrees anticlockwise, so that the left hand edge of the strikingly linear, now vertical cloud appears blasted by the sun’s rays and, perhaps as a result of this solar barrage, to be shedding shattered cloudlets from its right hand edge.

Technique: OM-4 with 150mm Zuiko lens; Fuji Provia 400 colour slide push processed to 3200 ISO, giving wonderful grain.
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STILL LIFE 179 – MEGALITH 2 (MONO)

 

 


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The prehistoric ritual stones at Stanton Drew, in the Chew Valley south of Bristol.

Other images of these ritual stones are here: 1   .

More info about this prehistoric site is here .

Click onto the image to open a larger version in a separate window, and click onto that image to enlarge it further – recommended.

Technique: X-T1 with 10-24 Fujinon lens at 15mm (equiv); 200 ISO; Lightroom, using the Velvia/Vivid film simulation; Silver Efex Pro 2, starting at the String Infra Red Low Contrast preset and adding a strong Selenium tone; Stanton Drew; 6 Nov 2017.
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STILL LIFE 178 – GULL

 

 

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Emerging warm and well fed from Hart’s Bakery, I gazed up into the blues of a cold dawn.  And there was the sliver of a crescent Moon, strikingly beautiful, amidst wisps of passing cloud.  And all at once the crowing of gulls, and there they came, drifting over high from the west.  I knew those calls, they were the larger Herring and Lesser Black-backed Gulls, coming in ravenously over the city, looking for something – anything! – to eat.

The city’s noise was already starting up around me but up there, where they were flying, there were only the sounds of the wind and the birds.  I imagined what they could see. Below, the city’s lights, and then up above, the thin, drifting billows of vapour and that brilliant, shining crescent.

Fly well, my friends, go well – 60 years ago, I grew up beside your ancestors on the coast; their calls were my constant companions.  And now my city is your bread basket, and the cold waters of its reservoirs the safe havens upon which you spend the long hours of dangerous darkness.

And there was humour in the moment too.  A man appeared at my elbow, asking what I was photographing, telling me he’s a photographer too, showing me images on his mobile phone – but heavens, man, I’m trying to photograph the ******* heavens, man!!!  Phrases started passing through my mind … from days long ago, giving as good as I got as a rugby forward … give him a dead legkick him in the …. but, this is Life, and I can only smile now at the recollection of the moment.

The camera did well.  I was leaning back, braced against a high wall, but in that light the lens was wide open and, at x6 magnification and at a shutter speed only 1/75th – this image is a tribute to the X-T2’s image stabilisation.  The bird may not be perfectly sharp, but that’s not a factor here.  I could have used a higher ISO, but in the heat of the moment just went with it.

Click onto the image to open a larger version in a separate window, and click onto that image to enlarge it further – certainly recommended.

Technique: X-T2 with 55-200 Fujinon lens at 305mm (equiv); 6400 ISO; Lightroom, using the Provia/Standard film simulation; beside Temple Meads Station, Bristol; 15 Dec 2107.
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STILL LIFE 176 – MEGALITH 1 (MONO)

 

 


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Standing ritual stone – or megalith – erected in prehistoric times at Stanton Drew.

More about the Stanton Drew prehistoric site is here .

Click onto the image to open a larger version in a separate window, and click onto that image to enlarge it yet again – recommended.

Technique: X-T1 with 10-24 Fujinon lens at 15mm (equiv); 200 ISO; Lightroom; Silver Efex Pro 2, starting at the Fine Art Process preset, and giving the image the look of Kodak Tri-X 400 TX Pro black and white film; Stanton Drew; 6 Nov 2017.
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STANTON DREW 41 – VILLAGE LIFE 8

 

 


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This series of posts – looking again at Stanton Drew – is entitled Village Life, and really I suppose its just that, looking at little scenes and details around the village, trying to give a flavour of its life.  But there’s no getting away from the fact that this village is sitting on the immediate edge of a major stone age site – there are actually standing stones in the pub’s back garden.  I’ve already mentioned this in this post.

Two things get to me here.  Firstly – and delightfully! – although this is certainly an important Stone Age site, spatially at least on a par with the far more well known Stonehenge and Avebury, it is far from all but the most specialist tourist trails.  It does have much meaning for the local Pagan community, something which I respect and identify with very much, but the really lovely thing about these standing stones is that, most often, there are no other visitors at all, so that there is every chance to experience and savour them in peace, quiet and solitude – so different from Stonehenge and Avebury, and truly a wonderful gift.

I’m a geologist, with all that entails about understanding and being at ease with vast periods of time, and I also have a great interest in history, not least ancient history.  And the second thing that gets to me about the Stanton Drew standing stones are the great time periods involved.  The stones were laid out and erected around 4,000 or 5,000 years ago, in Neolithic times.  A line of low hills can be seen in the photo here, and up on those hills is the Iron Age camp of Maes Knoll, which is thought to have been built around 250BC – so the stone circles at Stanton Drew were already two or more thousand years old before that Iron Age encampment – itself remote in age to our eyes – was built.

Later in history, the Anglo-Saxons arrived.  I don’t have an exact date here, but somewhere around 650AD may be right.  And I mention them not only because of my great interest in their history, but also because the name Stanton Drew derives in part from their time – stanton – some sort of settlement or enclosure in the vicinity of the standing stones.  And so to the Christian church, parts of which date from the 13th century, ie some time after 1200AD.  I like Stanton Drew as a place, but the great, visible length of history here considerably adds to it for me.

An introduction to this Village Life series can be found here: 1Further images are here: 2 3 4 5 6 7 .    Each will open in a new window.

Click onto the image to open a larger version in a separate window, and click onto that image to enlarge it still further – recommended.

Technique: X-T1 with 10-24 Fujinon lens at 15mm (equiv); 400 ISO; Lightroom, using the Provia/Standard film simulation; Stanton Drew; 6 Nov 2017.
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