SOMERSET LEVELS 447 – THE NORTH DRAIN, LOOKING WEST 2

 

 


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Using a very wide angle lens to see a wider angle of view – sharply –  than the unaided human eye ever can: the manmade North Drain flows off slowly towards the horizon, removing water from the often sodden, flat peatlands around it.  Surface water can be seen lying on these rough pastures, but they are not yet actually flooded.  Above, during a period of numerous storms, the tranquil sky of a brief interlude of high atmospheric pressure.

In my previous post –  here  –  there is a very different version of this view, taken with a telephoto lens and presented in black and white.  The post will open in a separate window.

Click onto the image once or twice to open an enlarged version in a separate window.

Technique: X-T2 with 10-24 Fujinon lens at 15mm (equiv); 200 ISO; jpeg created and processed in-camera from a raw file, using the Velvia/VIVID film simulation; no further processing; the North Drain, on Tealham Moor, on the Somerset Levels southwest of Wedmore; 14 Feb 2020.
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OUTER SUBURBS 181 – EARLY MORNING 40

 

 


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Other images in this Early Morning series – from both rural and urban settings, and from Kenya too – are here: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 .  All will open in separate windows.  You can also search on the “early morning” tag.

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

Technique: TG-5 at 100mm (equiv); 800 ISO; spot metering; Lightroom, starting at the Camera Natural profile; south Bristol; 2 Dec 2019.
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OUTER SUBURBS 176 – EARLY MORNING 39

 

 


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A bitingly cold dawn with a hard frost: and so to slippery roads and pavements, and to a bright moon high in a completely clear sky.

Other images in this Early Morning series – from both rural and urban settings, and from Kenya too – are here: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 .  All will open in separate windows.  You can also search on the “early morning” tag.

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

Technique: TG-5 at 25mm (equiv); 800 ISO; spot metering; Lightroom, starting at the Camera Vivid profile; south Bristol; 18 Jan 2020.

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OUTER SUBURBS 174 – EARLY MORNING 38

 

 

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Other images in this Early Morning series – from both rural and urban settings, and from Kenya too – are here: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 .  All will open in separate windows.  You can also search on the “early morning” tag.

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

Technique: TG-5 at 100mm (equiv); 6400 ISO; spot metering; Lightroom, starting at the Camera Vivid profile; south Bristol; 10 Jan 2020.
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TALKING IMAGES 51 – THE OLYMPUS TG-5 AT FULL STRETCH

 

 


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WALKING IN THE NAUTICAL TWILIGHT!

LOL!!! >>> early morning walking on the day before the Winter Solstice – this was taken yesterday at 0715, and Google tells me that dawn in Bristol was at 0733 yesterday, Dec 21st.  So this is apparently during what is known as Nautical Twilight, which is when the Sun is between 12 and 6 degrees below the horizon, i.e. not yet risen but still providing some brightness.  This form of twilight is known as Nautical because the horizon and some stars are visible, so permitting navigation at sea on clear days.  But there are no stars visible here, because the darkness above the horizon was a thick, dark rain cloud, which was about to empty its contents quite accurately onto The FATman!

SOMETHING FOR THE TECHIES …

Well, Nautical Twilight, we live and learn, but the real point of this photo are the technicalities – which I know will immediately send most of you glassy eyed and soporific.  (Well, OK, good point, more glassy eyed and soporific …)  But here is the TG-5 working almost flat out – the handheld exposure, using spot metering for the highlights, was 1/13th second at f 4.2; 6400 ISO; 74mm (equiv) focal length.  There was nothing convenient to lean on in an attempt to steady the shot, so I had to rely on the camera’s built in stabilisation.  The TG-5 will go up to 12,800 ISO but looking at the grain in this photo, after processing in Lightroom, the grain at 12,800 must be really something else >>> although that might not stop me using that ISO in the future!

I don’t think the picture is pin-sharp but, as always, that is not overly important to me.  What is important to me is that this little camera has just about managed to cope with the conditions prevailing on this wet early morning, and that it has enabled me to produce a pretty accurate representation of the scene, of what it was like being there – the thin, wan light on the southeastern horizon, the dark cloud threatening rain, the silhouettes of the bare winter trees, and that single lit window – people up and about early, getting ready for a probably dull and wet, winter’s day in south Bristol.

You can enlarge this image in a separate window by clicking twice onto it – recommended.

BIG BOYS’ TOYS!

But I’m not a techie, far less, and >>> oh thank heavens!!! >>> not a Pixel Peeper either!  Every week, Amateur Photographer magazine keeps me up with the latest advances in digital cameras, some of which I understand, some of which I don’t.  But the bottom line is that I’m simply interested in cameras that do the business, that come up with the goods.  My criteria are basic: I want a camera to be (reasonably) lightweight, compact and robust, with good ergonomics (i.e. feeling natural and intuitive to handle/use), and one that is capable of working in diverse light conditions – including (definitely without a tripod NB!) the murk pictured above.

Some people apparently want to be seen with cameras that look good, that perhaps are thought to add something to their image, but such feelings interest me not in the slightest – I just want a camera that does the job, and that doesn’t break my nearly 70 year old back!

One thing that attracts me about photography is that it enables me to be creative, to express my artistic side – relatively easily.  Recently I read a book on oil painting, which is something I thought might be interesting, before quite quickly coming to the conclusion that I lack both the necessary skills (my drawings have always been truly terrible) and – equally importantly –  the patience required.  Far better to stick with my cameras!

Another thing that attracts me to photography is that it is a meeting of science and the arts, and that to be done successfully it needs a bit of both disciplines.  Which of course leads to those more interested in the technology, and in my experience this is mainly a male thing – Big Boys’ Toys!  Just how Politically Incorrect can I get???  The thing is, I have recurring eyewitness accounts of a photography group who go out to various locations to take pictures – when the women actually do take pictures whereas most of the men spend at least some of the time discussing the relative merits of their camera gear!  Well, I do want to fit in, so maybe I should buy a powerful sports convertible with one of these overlarge, super noisy exhausts – mid-life crisis (a bit late, as it happens …) here I come!!!

AND SO TO THE BOTTOM LINE

And so to the bottom line, via a quote from Amateur Photographer’s Deputy Editor, Geoff Harris, last week:

I really do believe a major part of being a successful photographer is not only to become technically competent and to know your camera inside out, but also to be able to spot a unique opportunity in the first place.  I guess that is what people mean when they talk about “developing your eye”, but this essential skill only comes about through experience.

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OUTER SUBURBS 160 – EARLY MORNING 31

 

 


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Clear morning, early December.

Other images in this Early Morning series – from both rural and urban settings, and from Kenya too – are here: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 Each will open in a separate window.

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

Technique: TG-5 at 100mm (equiv); 800 ISO; Lightroom, starting at the Camera Vivid profile; south Bristol; 4 Dec 2019.
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OUTER SUBURBS 158 – EARLY MORNING 29

 

 


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Other images in this Early Morning series – from both rural and urban settings, and from Kenya too – are here: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 .

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

Technique: TG-5 at 25mm (equiv); 800 ISO; spot metering; Lightroom, starting at the Camera Vivid profile; south Bristol; 9 Nov 2019.
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I AM THE LIGHT

 

 


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I am The Light

above

The Crossing of the Striped Horse
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SOMERSET LEVELS 375 – EARLY MORNING CLOUD

 

 


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A cool and quiet, early morning on Queen’s Sedge Moor: only the sounds of birds, the light breeze, and far off cows. 

And up above, off to the east, soft, slowly drifting clouds.

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

Technique: Z 6 with 70-300 Nikkor lens used in DX (= APS-C) format to give 450mm; 400 ISO; Lightroom, starting at the Camera Vivid v2 profile; Queen’s Sedge Moor, on the Somerset Levels; 5 July 2019.
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SOMERSET LEVELS 371 – LOOKING INTO THE DISTANCE

 

 


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The view into the distance, into another world perhaps.  I say this because, years ago, when I was braver, more reckless and probably more romantic than I am now, I was lucky enough to spend a lot of time in very wild places, in Arabia and in Kenya, and to some extent high up in the Western Alps too.  And I remember being totally drawn and excited by the dim twinkling of far off lights seen through the blues of dawn and dusk – both from the ground and from aircraft.  I felt I was looking into another world, seeing something almost magical, with feelings both of excitement and awe.

But of course, in walking, motoring or flying to those twinkling lights, reality reasserted itself, the magical became mundane – and it was only when I looked back behind me, back towards where I had been, that I could see the magic once more … ha! >>> such is life >>> such is the reality of things!

But, even now, all these years later, and when I can infuse enough blood into my alcohol stream, looking deeply into far off blues – the vast calm indigos of John Fowles – still gets to me.  A little bit of the magic is still there, and I am most grateful for that.

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

Technique: Z 6 with 70-300 Nikkor lens at 300mm; 400 ISO; Lightroom, starting at the Camera Landscape v2 profile; looking east from Queen’s Sedge Moor, on the Somerset Levels; 5 July 2019.
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