A side-blog

I've posted some Guild Wars 2-related things here before, but mostly this is a place for my photography and sometimes software dev stuff, so I've avoided posting too much GW2 things here. Up til now this has meant I've just not posted GW2 things anywhere, but after some prompting I've set up a Tumblr: https://dailytyria.tumblr.com/ It's basically just a place I can post the hundreds of screenshots I have of this game. »

Dunwich Heath in the evening

Summer is definitely on the way: the evenings are light for longer (sunset is around 20:00), the weather is warmer, and things are starting to grow green bits. I've visited Dunwich Heath before, earlier in the year, and although I got a nice walk out of it, I got there a little too late to get many decent photos, even with the tripod. This time though I arrived with enough time to enjoy an hour's walk before the sun set. Equipment note: all the pictures here were taking using the Fuji 50–230mm. It's a pretty nice lightweight telephoto »

OCOLOY Week 52

And here it is, the final week! It's been quite the journey, and I think has served its purpose excellently. I know my X-E1 and 35/1.4 now, their strengths and weaknesses, and I can set them up for a shot instinctively. I'm comfortable with the 50mm-e field of view, which I certainly wasn't in the beginning. One perhaps surprising result of this experience is that it's really dulled my craving for a new camera. Yeah I'd like an X-T10 or X-T1 and also the new 35/2 but honestly I can't justify the cost, since they won't actually »

OCOLOY Week 51

For this penultimate week, I decided to bend the rules a little, in that I actually used my X100 all week instead of the X-E1 and 35/1.4, thus foregoing the 'one camera' and 'one lens' aspects entirely. Not even the same focal length. But man have I missed the X100. I sent it to my brother months ago since he wanted to see if that 35mm-e field of view suited him before buying the equivalent lens for his Panasonic m4:3 camera. Yeah the X100 has its downsides: the EVF is kinda grainy, and freezes briefly when you »

OCOLOY Week 50

Fifty! Only two more after this, the end feels so close now. I've started forming some vague ideas about what I want to do with the huge volume of photos I've accumulated over the past year (and a bit, since I stalled several times). Since most of the pictures are from within a few miles, I think I'm going to do a kind of documentary project about Lowestoft and the surrounding areas, possibly from an outsider's perspective, since I've only been here a couple of years and in that time I've not really made much of an effort to integrate. »

OCOLOY Week 49

Oops. I seem to have missed a week! Honestly, there's no good reason for this, just a combination of forgetfulness and lack of motivation; that week, I really didn't get out to take pictures much. Fortunately, this week was rather more productive: not only did I manage to get out for a few early morning walks, today Zoe and I went to Framlingham Castle! That last time she was there the market was on, so Zoe brought back some delicious brownies and cheesecakes, but alas this time (being a Sunday) there was no market. Still, it was a very enjoyable »

OCOLOY Week 48

All this week I've felt like this OCOLOY post was going to be pretty good, as I made a decent effort to get out with my camera several times and got some nice pictures as a result. I would have written this on time, too, except I got distracted by my shiny new printer, a Canon Pro-10S. It's an A3 pigment ink printer, and it's lovely – already I've gone through most of a 50 pack of PermaJet matte paper I bought with it. I was a little concerned at first that the colours seemed a bit dull, but it turns »

OCOLOY Week 47

Following on from marriage on Tuesday, Zoe and I went on a small honeymoon to a country house hotel in northern Norfolk, courtesy of her sister. It was a little dark by the time we got there, thanks to some roadworks delaying us by half an hour on the way, but we still had time to enjoy a lovely walk around the large National Trust park behind the hotel. »

OCOLOY Week 46

Bit of a departure this week, as for one thing this post is late, but I have a good reason: I got married! Even though it was a low-key thing, it was still a bit stressful getting things prepared, so not much time for picture-taking. The other departure is colour. Most of these pictures were taken in Beccles and although the monochrome versions are ok, I still feel like the colour is necessary with these. »

OCOLOY Week 45

Quite a 'close to home' week, this one, in that I didn't really venture any further afield than Lowestoft, at least not anywhere photographically interesting. There industrial estate near Beccles where we went for breakfast, at a café called Posh Pigs, might have borne some fruit, if the weather was nicer and we'd had more free time to spend there, so it might be worth a return trip (even if just for the food!). The weather's also not been quite as cold lately, so I may see about another trip to Dunwich forest. »

OCOLOY Week 44

Busy at work this week, and you know what that means: not many pictures taken - few enough, in fact, that I had to scavenge some from last week to make 7. The week wasn't a total lazy-fest though, as I've started going running again, 3 times a week, using a 10K training thing on my phone. I say 'running' but at this stage it's actually 80% walking, but given how unfit I am, running for 1 minute at a time then walking for 4 minutes is plenty. »

OCOLOY Week 43

Bit of a slow week, this one, with no good pictures taken during the most of the week – all but one of this week's pictures are from my trip to Hunstanton on Saturday. I find it interesting the difference in choice of pictures for that post versus this one; I can't quite explain it but they seem less... abstract? Prettier? »

Hunstanton beach and cliffs

Hunstanton is a town on the west coast of Norfolk. It's one of the only places in the east of England where you can watch the sun set over the sea, and is home to some interesting red-and-white cliffs. The weather forecast was more promising today than last time, so I decided to drive over to Hunstanton again. The sun was shining almost all the way there, but annoyingly, clouds began to appear not long after I arrived. Still, lightly overcast certainly beats heavy overcast and freezing cold rain and wind, and the number of people on the beach compared »

OCOLOY Week 42

Christmas and New Year are quite the schedule disruptors, as evidenced by the nearly 4 week break since the previous OCOLOY post and during that time I did quite a bit of shooting with lenses other than the 35mm. The regular weekly posting will now resume, though, and with only ten more to go! I've decided that when I finish I'm going to do a Top 10, since a 'best of each week' isn't really practical, and dividing the weeks up into months seems a bit arbitrarily limiting, since I might like several pictures from one month and none from »

Birmingham, grey

Zoe attended a teaching conference on Saturday, and we thought it'd be a good chance for me to take a look around the city, which I'd never been to before. The weather was unfortunately not very inspiring, and I spent a good deal of time and energy trying to find a camera shop so I could get a spare battery for my camera, as I'd forgotten to charge the current one and I seem to have misplaced my existing spare. With a bit more preparation I could perhaps have made a list of potentially interesting places to visit, and if »

Documentary photography in Tyria

A series of pictures using screenshots from the game Guild Wars 2 as their base, processed to look like grainy black and white film photos. Ash Tribune quarters, Black Citadel Breachwater Lake, Diessa Plateau Dreamdark Enclave, Caledon Forest Monument Grounds, Blazeridge Steppes Pyrite Peninsula, Malchor's Leap Ruins of Rin, Black Citadel ruins of the Cathedral of Zephyrs, Malchor's Leap Sentinel stronghold at Tenaebron Lake, Fields of Ruin Gillfarn Pond, Fields of Ruin »

OCOLOY Week 41

I digressed a little this week, photographically speaking: the first two pictures in this post are not from the usual 35mm lens. The first is from the Fuji 18–55mm f/2.8–4, the mid-range 'kit lens' that most people seem to think is undeserving of the negative connotations such a term suggests. It certainly is a nice lens, especially given its price when bought as part of a kit, but I think I've become too dependent on being able to operate in the aperture ranges above f/4 (at the 35mm mark the lens's maximum aperture is f/ »

OCOLOY Week 40

40 feels like a milestone, a nice round number of weeks. It's certainly a significant chunk of a year! Still, the ones I'm most looking forward to are 42 and 47, or '10 weeks to go' and '5 weeks to go', and of course weeks 51 and 52 will be rather exciting. Yesterday Zoe and I went to Norwich, and on the way home stopped by Wex Photographic's showroom to buy a Christmas present for her dad. While there I got to try the Fuji 27mm pancake on my X-E1, and it felt really nice – so compact and light, and »

OCOLOY Week 39

I said last week that I was going to think about using a 'Fuji Neopan 1600' emulation for processing this week's pictures. I decided to go ahead with this, and quite early on realised it'd mean having to keep it in mind when shooting, as it has a particular contrast and colour response that's quite... 'opinionated'. The usual preset I use has a more subtle aesthetic, and suits quite a wide variety of scenes, but this Neopan one certainly stamps a kind of grungy reportage feel on to the pictures. I'm not sure I want to keep using it, primarily »

OCOLOY Week 38

For some reason I'm at loss to explain, a couple of days ago I started a Week 39 OCOLOY album in Capture One, thinking I'd already done 38. I was a rather dismayed that I'd left it so late in the week, further so because of the dreary weather since then. Of course, this post being titled 'OCOLOY Week 38' shows I was mistaken, and could in fact make use of several nice pictures I took earlier in the week in considerably more aureate light, which is a relief - I'd almost resigned myself to making this an experimental post »