HOME 7 – LOOKING OUT THE WINDOW

 

 


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Looking out of the kitchen window, with a long telephoto and some good light.

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

Technique: Z 6 with 70-300 Nikkor lens used in DX (= APS-C) format to give 450mm; 400 ISO; Lightroom, starting at the Camera Landscape v2 profile; the back garden; 26 Nov 2020.
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HOME 5 – LOOKING OUT THROUGH LACE CURTAINS

 

 


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Looking out through lace curtains, as sunrise starts to light our back garden.  The curtain rail cuts starkly across the top of the image.  Because the curtains themselves are still in shadow at this early hour, they have taken on a blue hue, which (although it could easily be corrected) I think adds to things.

Click onto the “early morning” tag (below) to see more images from the early hours of the day. 

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

Technique: X-T2 with 55-200 Fujinon lens at 300mm (equiv); 800 ISO; Lightroom, starting at the Modern 01 profile; at home; 25 Nov 2020.
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ARCHIVE 583 – AUTUMN 2

 

 


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Autumn leaves form a carpet around the Hazel in our back garden; 30 Oct 2009.

Used away from the horizontal, the fisheye lens has given the whole photo the appearance of showing an elevated ridge in the ground.  Back beyond the Hazel’s trunks, the patches of green lawn appear to be sloping down to either side.  And the nearest leaves seem to be bulging up towards the camera, and to be swirling in a circular fashion – which is an effect I like.

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

Technique: D700 with Sigma 15mm full frame fisheye lens; 800 ISO.

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ARCHIVE 579 – A WONDERFUL EXPERIENCE

 

 


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I’ve been lucky enough to have had many wonderful experiences with the inhabitants of the natural world, and another exploded upon me this afternoon – 24 July 2013 – in my back garden!  Having eaten a little too much lunch, I shouldered the D700 and wandered down into the unkempt jungle that, until I do something about it, is, well, the back garden.

Although I’ve cut a lot of vegetation back, the Hazel and the Lower Oak throw up such a screen that the bottom of the garden isn’t very visible until you get right on down there.  So, I brushed through the tree’s screen and, there in front of me, the Buddleia that I’d also hacked had brought forth many blossoms and, feeding on these, were more Peacock butterflies than I can remember seeing together in one place- there were at least 10 of them in a small space, and the combination of the blooms and the butterflies in the bright sunlight was simply wonderful.

I’d like to have used the 105mm macro but the butterflies were just a bit too far away, so I got up close and personal again with my lover – the 70-300 – and we went at it together.  Put simply, I love butterflies, they have a magic for me, and I’m a sucker most of all for the big ones – these Peacocks, and the Red Admirals, Painted Ladies, the two Whites, the Commas and the Tortoiseshells that are still relatively common in the garden – tho nothing like so common as they were in my childhood, in the 1950s.

I own a simply beautiful book – The Butterflies of Britain & Ireland, by Jeremy Thomas and Richard Lewington (ISBN 0-86318-591-6) – that contains wonderfully beautiful, life-sized paintings together with a wealth of fascinating detail.  This is a favourite book.  If I had to choose just five of my many books to keep, this would certainly be in the five.  If you love natural things, I recommend it unreservedly – my edition is 1991 – I don’t know if its still in print.

And this tells me that the main emergence of new Peacocks occurs in late July – and here we are!

So, some pictures.  Not portraits, but here are the wonderful creatures.  All Nikon D700 with the 70-300 lens, mainly at 300mm; 400 or 800 ISO.

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GARDEN 73 – A WONDERFUL ENCOUNTER 2

 

 


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Robin in our front garden.  Another image, and the full story of this encounter, are here (opens in a separate window).

The composition here is a little awkward, but I do like those leaves up in the top left corner!

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

Technique: Z 6 with 70-300 Nikkor lens used in DX (= APS-C) format to give 450mm; 3200 ISO; spot metering; Lightroom, starting at the Camera Landscape v2 profile; south Bristol; 22 Sept 2020.
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ARCHIVE 570 – AUTUMN HAZEL, DOUBLE EXPOSURE

 

 


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A double exposure of the Hazel tree in our Bristol garden, with the beautiful yellow leaves that it has in the autumn.  The camera was moved slightly between the two exposures.

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

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GARDEN 72 – A WONDERFUL ENCOUNTER

 

 


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Out doing a bit of gardening, cutting our “front lawn” (aka The Dandelion Patch – I like Dandelions!).  And I kept getting the impression out of the corner of my eye of something darting swiftly by – until at last there came a beautifully warm red-orange glow from the bottom of a dense bush, and there was a Robin, a fairly small type of thrush.

And as I raked the grass and so laid bare more and more food items for him, he darted out more and more and dutifully gobbled them all down.  And knowing birds a little, I kept fairly still and started talking to him in much the same way that I talk to cats – quietly, softly and low.  And, looking up at this giant towering over him, he came closer and closer, to within a couple of inches of my feet I suppose, and I did wonder whether he might hop up onto the top of my shoe.

But he hopped away again, though not far away – and I started thinking about a photograph.  So, very quietly and slowly, keeping my eyes on him, I backed away into the house where I knew the Z 6 with a telezoom attached and a charged up battery were ready and waiting.  Creeping back out into the garden again I was sure he’d have disappeared – but no, he was still there, looking me.  So I carefully braced myself against the wall of the house and managed a few pictures.

Trouble was, I’d hardly used the Z 6 since the start of the coronavirus lockdown in March – I’ve been almost entirely photographing with the Olympus TG-5 – and so I’d forgotten exactly how the ***** Z 6 works!!! >>>> and so to several failed shots!

But a couple of the frames came out ok – and so to a record of a really wonderful close encounter, just the thing in fact to lift the spirits in these very sad and trying times.

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

Technique: Z 6 with 70-300 Nikkor lens used in DX (= APS-C) format to give 450mm; 3200 ISO; spot metering; Lightroom, starting at the Camera Landscape v2 profile; south Bristol; 22 Sept 2020.

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ARCHIVE 561 – EARLY MORNING GARDEN 1

 

 


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Leaf on our Hazel tree; 24 June 2013.

The black elements in this photo have a vague upper left to lower right (or vice versa!) orientation, which produces something of a dynamic maybe.  And I like the leaf’s serrated periphery.

But most of all I enjoyed the cool, peaceful stillness of the garden early on this overcast morning – the grove of Cowslips gone to seed, some new Badger holes, and everything generally running riot, certainly heading to something like jungle unless I intervene.

Click onto the “early morning” tag (below) to see more images from the early hours of the day.

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

Technique: D700 with 105mm Nikkor lens; 12,800 ISO.

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ARCHIVE 529 – CLOUDS IN THE EARLY MORNING

 

 


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Early morning clouds over our garden; 22 Apr 2013.

Click onto the “early morning” tag (below) to see more images from the early hours of the day.

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

Technique: D800 with 70-300 Nikkor lens; 400 ISO; all underexposed to various degrees in Capture NX2 to saturate colour and bring out detail.

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ARCHIVE 523 – LOOKING UP AT SUNRISE (MONO)

 

 


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Looking up over our garden this morning – clouds and a contrail caught by the rising sun; Bristol; 22 Apr 2013.

I was just on the point of making that greatest of luxuries, the morning’s first cup of tea, when I glanced out of the window.  And then came one of the great improbables – a FATman moving at a rate of knots – in a frantic dash out into the back garden!

I love skies and clouds but, especially when the sun is just appearing or disappearing, and when contrails are moving steadily across the sky, things happen quickly – and there’s no time to hang about!

Click onto the “early morning” tag (below) to see more images from the early hours of the day.

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

Technique: D800 with 70-300 Nikkor lens at 135mm; 400 ISO; Silver Efex Pro 2, starting at the Fine Art High Key preset.

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