Weird Findings on a Woodland Walk

On my walk in the woods this week I took a route I have not followed for a long time. I must have known that this weird old rusty abandoned pipe and the farm equipment was there because it has clearly been there for a long time – I guess I’d just forgotten.

inside out

Continue reading

A Flash of Fungi

I posted an iPhone photo of these little lamp-like mushrooms on Instagram recently. This is a shot taken on my Canon 550D (using flash). I can take good photos on my iPhone 5c but on this occasion it was definitely easier to get a better shot with the Canon.

Mushroom

Trolley Cemetery and a New View of Drawing

Decaying with time, these old trolleys create a strange cemetery in the mouth of the River Tawe, Swansea.

Those that already follow this blog will know that there is more to come throughout this week to tell the story of a recent walk in the docks/marina area of Swansea.

The walk was the second Mission Gallery Walk and Draw with Sarah Abbott that I have taken part in. On this occasion, while I did a little sketching, most of my drawing was with my DSLR camera, iPhone and small edirol sound recorder.

Having read that the winner of the Jerwood Drawing Prize this year was sound artist  Alison Carlier, I felt that my description of drawing with my camera and sound recorder while out on pre-production recce walks for StillWalks videos, is perfectly valid.

With The Big Draw continuing throughout this month, perhaps it is an appropriate time to consider and enjoy the broadening definition of drawing.

trolleys in sand

trolley in sand

Old fence section

trolley in sand

Carreg Cennen Castle

One of the final days of a beautiful Summer found us at Carreg Cennen Castle in Carmarthenshire, South Wales. It is a magnificent ruin sitting atop  a crag of rock looking over to the Black Mountain on the western edge of the Brecon Beacons.

The first image was taken on my iPhone and the second on my Canon 550D. The first needed some cropping and both needed some light adjustment.

Carreg Cennen Castle

Carreg Cennen Castle

Going to Seed

Thistles – another irresistible subject for photography!

These photos were taken on my Canon 550D with a Canon 70-300mm IS USM lens. However, it is also important for me to keep developing my skills with iPhone photography or iPhonography as it is often my phone camera that I have with me when out walking.

With so much to see, I wouldn’t want to miss an opportunity, yet at the same time, it is not practical to always have heavy camera slung over your shoulder.

thistle

Thistles

Exposure of a Queen

It was a pretty grey day last week when I visited Windsor. I found that my photography was best handled in full manual mode rather than relying on any of the semi-automatic options.

Having experimented with exposure, shutter speed and iso and found a reasonable compromise, the rest of my photography needed fewer adjustments as the weather remained miserable (if not actually raining) for the whole visit.

The photos below of Queen Victoria were deliberately over and under-exposed as I liked the appearance of her profile against the sky, which as you can see in the second shot, was not exactly bright. Having said this, I think the second shot is my favourite! Which is yours?

Queen Victoria statue

Queen Victoria statue

Queen Victoria statue

Architecture – In the Abstract

The Senedd by Richard Rogers – The National Welsh Assembly building in Cardiff was opened in 2006 but until recently I had only viewed it from the outside. There have been many photographs taken of it, most of them showing the exterior or the mushroom like ceiling of the interior. The photos below are mine.

Different Events – The architecture I have featured this week has all been different as have the events that have taken me to the various venues. The event at the Senedd was the launch of a community solar PV co-operative by friends – www.egni.coop – and are looking for people to invest. We already enjoy reduced bills as a result of solar PV panels on our roof.

Eyes and ears open – I said at the beginning of the week that I always try to have my eyes and ears open for potential StillWalks locations. In fact a StillWalks video could be produced for any location, but because I am looking and listening to the things around me with this potential in mind, I feel I am able to see and hear better than I would otherwise. Using the camera (DSLR, compact or iPhone) helps me to focus in on different aspects of my surroundings and in time you begin to do this anyway. It is the same with sound – listening through headphone helps you focus your hearing and in time I believe you become more perceptive. Now I just need to prove it lol!

Senedd Cardiff

Senedd Cardiff

Senedd Cardiff

Featured SillWalks Videos – I’m afraid this is going to be another week without a featured StillWalks video. I have a number of productions to complete and I look forward to adding these to the StillWalks collection. For now there is, as always, access to sample length videos is available through the Walks menus and you can always buy them at anytime for as little as £1.50.

Architectural Scale – Is Perspective Real?

I like this photo largely for its composition and the perspective of the buildings,  both real and apparent. I say real and apparent because the buildings themselves are in fact taller than each other going from foreground to background – it’s not just the effect of perspective. I must make a point of taking a photo from the opposite end of the beach and see how they appear in perspective when the most distant building is the tallest!

The photos I have been posting this week were all taken on my iPhone. I seem to be doing this more often now but whether my iphonography is improving is another matter. It is a very convenient way to record observations (and sounds when I don’t have my kit with me) but in order to get effective images with the phone, you have to look at things differently. Angle of shot is probably the most important point . . . but that could be said for DSLR photography as well, I guess!

The photo below would have been grainy anyway, given the time of day and the fading light but there is a tendency for the iPhone camera to over expose when the light is dim. The image you see below is the result of post processing. Unlike a DSLR camera, you have pretty limited options in these circumstances when it comes to telling the camera what to do.

Update – Thanks to  and his iPhone Photography School, I have discovered the PureShot app which allows much more flexibility in shooting from the phone.

Meridian TowerThe buildings are on Swansea seafront – all apartment buildings, the closest being Meridian Tower. The lights in the background are those of the Swansea / Cork Ferry.