Tag Archives: Flickr

A day—or two—out

When you work for yourself, and your other half is retired, it’s very easy to forget to take holidays. Well, I find it easy to forget. To overcome this problem, we’ve decided to try to take short breaks that happen to coincide with model railway meetings of one kind or another. The precedent has been set by our annual jaunt to Telford for the Gauge O Guild exhibition.

This past weekend we wandered up to the West Midlands. We stayed in Oldbury, in one of those identikit hotels, on a short visit that encompassed the ScaleSeven Group’s AGM at the nearby Warley Model Railway Club’s premises. We travelled up from darn sarf on Friday, had the AGM on Saturday (feeling relaxed and refreshed by not having made the journey on the day), and pottered back home on the Sunday.

With time in hand, we made a slight detour to a local attraction before heading home.

Blakesley Hall, according to Wikipedia, “is a Tudor hall on Blakesley Road in Yardley, Birmingham, England. It is one of the oldest buildings in Birmingham and is a typical example of Tudor architecture with the use of darkened timber and wattle-and-daub infill, with an external lime render which is painted white. The extensive use of close studding and herringbone patterns on all sides of the house make this a home that was designed to show the wealth and status of the owner.”

The house and gardens are run by the Birmingham Museums. Originally a farmhouse set in its own land, the hall is now surrounded by 1930s housing estates. Nevertheless, once you enter the property, it is a tiny oasis of calm in the bustle of a suburban environment.

There is a modern entry block, with the gift shop, toilets and a tea room. On the day we visited, there was a display of various birds of prey. Volunteers were on hand to guide round the house, explaining about the building and its contents, and the histories of its various owners.

If you find yourself in the Birmingham area and have a couple of hours to spare, visit Blakesley Hall. We thoroughly enjoyed our visit, and you might too.

You can see some more of the images I took on our visit on my Flickr page.

While the sun shone

It was a nice day yesterday. While wondering how to spend my time, trying to relax for a change, I stumbled across my big camera. It was my fault for leaving it on the floor of the living room, I suppose. Anyway, dusting it off and checking the battery still had a charge, I wondered if I could remember how to operate it. Out to our back yard I went, and tried to find interesting things to snap.

I uploaded the selected best shots to my Flickr photo stream. Please go and have a look.

There might just be an inkling of a glimmer of interest in photography making an appearance. I must try to cultivate it again. I have got in mind a long term project, but I’m trying to get the enthusiasm together to get it started.

Finding my photographic mojo

With one of the wettest winters on record, 2014 didn’t seem to hold much promise for photographic expeditions. Having killed the Shutterbugs last year, I found much of my time involved elsewhere (that’s the workbench, obviously), and I completely lost my interest in photography somewhere along the line. The gear sat in the cupboard, unused and unloved.

Even the promise of some pretty good weather for much of the summer didn’t make my trigger finger itch like it used to. Perhaps the travails with the car, too much work to do and various other things taking what little spare time I had that just made me wonder what I ever found interesting in going out with the camera gear.

As the weather begins to turn at the end of what has turned out to be a pretty good summer, the prospect of a fine start and a sunrise at a reasonably sensible hour began to make me think it might be worth a trip. I charged batteries, formatted cards, cleaned things, chose some lenses and packed the bag.

After a short night’s sleep, I got up at 0445hrs BST, jumped in the car and headed off to the Isle of Grain. As I drove down the M2 I wondered about my sanity…

Reflections

Floating

Weathered

Blue

You can see the full set over at my Flickr stream. I think it was well worth the effort, and I think it may have helped me find my photographic mojo. My next planned trip is to an agricultural fair on the Hoo Peninsula, in about three weeks. I hope it doesn’t rain!

Here’s the World’s Best Paper Plane Maker | Wired Design | Wired.com

Spend a few minutes having a look at this guy’s obsession.

Here’s the World’s Best Paper Plane Maker | Wired Design | Wired.com.

There’s also a Flickr photostream with plenty of photos. Impressive stuff. Bear in mind that many of the working items on the real aircraft have been replicated as working items in manila paper and glue.

Medway Marinas

The Long WalkPillarCleatBollardHigh and DryCoils
BootHoleCrisscrossRustVanishing PointDangle
RestingFacing EastLean ToYellowGap

Medway Marinas, a set on Flickr.

I’ve been visiting Hoo’s riverside wall area for a few years now, but I’ve never ventured along the footpath that passes through the boat yards and marina. I had the chance to actually visit what’s now called “Port Werburgh”, and Whitton Marine’s yard, with a photographic chum yesterday.

I only took my compact digital, because I wasn’t really expecting anything fantastic. With hindsight I should have taken the SLR, but I think the little camera proved itself quite adequate.

Invicta Shutterbugs Rochester Photowalk

Rochester CathedralLamp and WindowBell PullGlobeOrangesApples
AlleyWindowLoose ScrewOld GlassRepairGateway
Light and ShadeAnglesRochester CastleRochester CathedralLichenSilver Birch
High FliersSacred to the memory of...Here lies...BrokenIvyUrn

Rochester Photowalk, a set on Flickr.

After the disappointment of having to cancel the January walk due to the wrong type of snow, I was very pleased to wake to a clear sky for the February walk.

Nine of us turned up in Rochester, and wandered about pointing cameras at various things, chatting about photography, gardening, life, the universe and everything. I thoroughly enjoyed myself, and the photos on my Flickr Photostream are those I deem my best.

Hopefully, we’ll be setting up an Invicta Shutterbugs group on Flickr, as well as the knot of us over on Google+. I can’t begin to express how happy I am that this photowalking group is actually looking like it may take off and fly.

Welcome to 2013!

For the first time in a year I haven’t had to worry about taking a photograph of my breakfast.

As you know, if you follow my blog or twitter or Flickr, 2012 was a 366 project year for me. I’ve just posted the link to the December set, but I thought it would be nice to link to all twelve months in one place.

These link to the entries in this blog:

January | February | March | April | May | June
July | August | September | October | November | December

These link to each Flickr set individually:

January | February | March | April | May | June
July | August | September | October | November | December

I have to say I haven’t got a favourite image. To be honest, I don’t think I want to look at the images for a while! Still, it’s been a fun experience, despite those dark mornings when I just didn’t want to be bothered.

I’d like to thank my friends who have followed my progress, and offered advice and encouragement in equal measure. In particular, I’d like to thank Morton Goldberg, who I know through the Martin Bailey Photography forums and through Flickr, who said:

You set yourself a really difficult task by being so restrictive with respect to both subject and gear. I got worried a few times when you seemed to be losing interest. But you always perked up. Have a happy new year. At least you should enjoy breakfast more in the coming year since you can just eat it.

I shall certainly be enjoying my breakfast now I don’t have to take its picture first!