Oulton Broad Boats, and lens/camera musing

Since the weather was lovely this evening I went for a walk around Nicholas Everitt Park in Oulton Broad with my X-E1 and 18–55mm lens. This was also to satisfy some curiousity I had about the lens: have I been too dismissive of it in the past? (I've never really enjoyed using it.) The lens gets a lot of praise, being sharper and faster than the average kit lens, and better-built too. Thing is, I just find myself unable to get excited by it, compared to the 60mm macro, 14mm and 35mm f/1.4. I know this isn't »

The Peak District: Shatton Hall Farm

For this trip we stayed at Shatton Hall Farm Cottages, converted farm buildings turned into holiday accomodation. The houses are at the end of a narrow lane near Bamford, and the scenery is lovely. On Sunday morning we were lucky enough to get some fog still lingering around even at 9 o'clock, so I didn't have to get up too early! Once again, a mix of mostly 14mm and 60mm. »

The Peak District: Mam Tor

This weekend we visited the Peak District to meet some friends, and while the weather forecast predicted "mostly cloudy", we were very fortunate to actually get "mostly sunny". On Saturday we hiked up Mam Tor. I took three Fuji lenses: the 14mm, the 35mm f/1.4 and the 60mm macro. The 60 certainly got the most use here, which didn't surprise me – it's a natural fit to my preference for 'abstract' images, I think. The 14 was second, although not represented so much here. Last was the 35, which again wasn't too surprising – this sort of terrain seems to »

Boring Pictures

I remember reading many years ago about a book called Boring Postcards. It's just a collection of postcards assembled by Martin Parr that are all, well, boring: pictures of car parks, office receptions, bus terminals, that sort of thing. It's fascinating! At first it's just amusing how ridiculous the idea is, but it gets you wondering: why do these things even exist? Who thought it anybody would buy a postcard depicting a brutalist office building in a city centre? Anyway, the pictures kind of resonated with me for another reason: I feel like many of my pictures are... a bit »

Pakefield and Kessingland Beach and Cliffs

Just a bit south of Pakefield beach, heading towards Kessingland, there are some interesting sandstone cliffs that I'd never seen before. I didn't even know they were there until I decided on the spur of the moment to take a walk along the beach that way. These were taken with a mixture of the Fuji X100, and the Fuji X-E1 with 14mm and 60mm lenses. It's interesting using the two cameras side by side, as it makes it clear how dated the X100 is now – its electronic viewfinder is pretty grainy and not very colour-accurate, it's slow, and changing autofocus »

A walk to Lowestoft

Continuing the walking theme from last time, Zoe and I walked all the way to Lowestoft town centre and back today, a distance of just under 12 km, and taking us 2 hours 45 minutes. We're both fans of Pokémon Go, primarily since it provides some pretty good motivation to go out and walk a lot, so naturally we had it active on our phones on the way into town. Alas, location data, full screen brightness and (probably) not very efficient game code meant my phone's battery was down to 35% by the time we got there, so apart from »

Dunwich: a walk in the woods

Taking advantage of the excellent weather we've been having lately, Zoe and I went for a walk in Dunwich Forest. We also got a bit disoriented on the way back and ended up crossing Westleton Heath, taking our distance walked to 10km. Good thing we need the exercise! »

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. »

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 »

OCOLOY Week 33

Much like last week, the weather this week was mostly grey and dull, making me really feel the onset of winter, and its associated emotional blues. This led me to poke around with some monochrome conversions in Capture One, and on a whim I tried a less contrasty one with a slightly brighter tone curve. I really like it, which is surprising to me because although I've often felt I should try to tone down the contrast a bit (in both mono and colour), up til now I've never really liked the results, thinking they looked too flat. The look »

OCOLOY Week 29

I made much more of an effort this week to get out and take pictures. I even got in my car and drove somewhere! (Amazing, I know) As a result, I had quite a few more pictures to choose from than in previous weeks, which of course necessitated sharpening my editing (in the selection sense) skills. This, I think, is one of the challenges of this whole project: picking a small number of really good pictures from perhaps hundreds. It gets especially tough once I've narrowed it down to 10 or so, because at that point I like all of »

OCOLOY Week 28

Gosh what a rainy week! About five of the days it rained all the while there was sunlight, leaving me few opportunities for picture-taking. reflection in blue plastic bikes lined up outside Costa insect-looking leaf tram tracks to fence chainlink fence closeup heavy clouds roadside fence and spiky plant pedestrian crossing button »

OCOLOY Week 27

Quite a local week, this one, as I didn't really have time to stray far from the house during the day, and the weather was often quite a disincentive to venture further out anyway. Still, there were moments of light, although few enough that I had to use some of the photos I took the previous week to make up the numbers (which allowed by The Rules!). Regarding the last picture: yes, that's our house, ready to have a leak repaired in the roof. The repairers are working on it as I write this, and there is lots of banging »

OCOLOY Week 26

This week I was definitely more active than last – I made a good effort to actually take some photos every day, even if I didn't always go beyond my back garden. Saturday was perhaps the most 'adventurous', as Zoe and I went to Raveningham Country Fair. It was a little more... local than last year's Heveningham Hall fair, and simply because of the smaller scale we were able to more or less see everything in a couple of hours. I won an old Pentax 50mm f/4 macro lens on eBay on Wednesday and ordered an M42–Fuji mount adapter »

OCOLOY Week 25

I honestly don't have all that much to say this week. Here's some photos. fairground swing ride gate bolt Tabbster on the shed aircraft wing Dinky's garden tree-lined road Bungay castle Mystère mouth »

OCOLOY Week 24

I'm wavering. Black and white, or colour? I can't settle on one, I like both. I think it's the weather – shiny days make me want to capture in colour, and the weather represented by this week's pictures is certainly sunny (and for walking around Ipswich, sometimes uncomfortably so). Although I did a bit of shooting during the week, none of it resulted in much of interest, so all of these pictures are from Friday evening, at Oulton Broad (I also took the Fuji 14mm on this trip, which is where the last picture is from) and Saturday in Ipswich, where »

OCOLOY Week 23

I will admit up front that I cheated just slightly with this week's post, in that a couple of the pictures aren't from the previous week's shooting, but are instead from around a month ago when Zoe and I went to a nearby forest. Still, had I been actively participating in my project at the time, I would have used those pictures, so it's not too much of a stretch. tap and blind shadows forest road forest trees cushion tie pale flowers and clover wispy cloud and roof desktop microphone »

Fuji 14mm brief initial impressions

I finally saved up enough to get a lens I've wanted for quite a while now: the Fuji XF 14mm f/2.8 R. This article is some of my first thoughts about the lens, in no particular order. Here's my lens family now: 14mm f/2.8, 35mm f/1.4, 18–55mm It's about half way between the 35 and 18–55 in size and weight, and balances just fine on my X-E1. It comes with a plastic hood that can also be used on the 18–55, and it's fine really, possibly a bit big but oh »

OCOLOY Week 22

Um. So it's been a while since the previous one camera one lens post, and honestly, I've not even used my camera all that much between then and now. Time to fix that! The (completely unintentional) summer OCOLOY break is over, and I'll be posting weekly updates again, although I'm switching to posting on Monday from now on, as that lets me spend more time, on Sunday, writing the posts. This week's pictures are almost entirely from the nearby town of Beccles. I've also decided to go back to black and white, although this time without the fake grain. canopy »

Into Darkness

I spent most of yesterday writing code, right on up until about 9pm, which left me in no frame of mind to sleep, so I decided to go for a walk to clear my head. I got a bit lost, following a road into a housing estate then on to various footpaths that crossed fields. The light was like this when I started: Getting dark, but nothing to worry about really. By the time I finally realised for certain where I was, it was more like this: Here's some more pictures from my trek into darkness. The far side of »