Concrete, sunshine and interesting lines

Stuck on the M25 (again) the other morning, with the camera at the ready to capture a field full of corn I always get stuck in traffic next to. The spring sunshine looks great on the corn and wind turbine in the middle of it, and It’s a shot I’ve been trying to get for weeks. A few miles before the cornfield, is this bridge and I was struck by how much more interesting things look with some decent light.
Thousands of people drive past this every day, and most of them probably take no notice of it whatsoever

M25 Bridge - M1 Junction

What about the cornfield? – The traffic stopped at the perfect spot to capture exactly the image in my mind’s eye. The only problem was that some bastard had been out in the combine harvester over the weekend, and all I had was a field full of stubble…. Ah well, there’s always next year….

Shiny and reflective.

Test CD Water Drop Macro

Not sure why, but seem to have become slightly obsessive about reflections recently. Haven’t touched the camera for over a week and cabin fever has not irreversibly set in. Been meaning to hve a crack at these things since the storm in a teacup shot (see my Flickr stream) to try and capture some clouds etc. reflected in the water. for the last two weeks the skies have been a monotonous grey, so as the sun attempted to shine this afternoon I felt obliged to have a go at this.
Regrettably, my cd tray only had this knackered old thing in (it’s got more scratches than a cat’s scratching post) and I didn’t get the tripod out, but went OK from a test perspective.

For those that care, this was taken hand-held, with the Canon 50mm f1.8 plus 36mm kenko extension tube.

Empty Promises

Something different to end the month with. Different in that it’s kind of a self portrait (well, it’s me in the picture at least). Been reading up on Flash, and after owning the 480EX for over 6 months, I still haven’t fiured out how to use it properly.

So, with a view to practicing, I got hold of some black foamy stuff, and wrapped it round the end of the flash to focus the light in a narrow field rather than having it spill all over the room.
The flash was then attached to the wireless trigger set to 1/16th power and placed on the floor so it pointed upwards to the space where I wanted to be. I took a couple of test shots to make sure my position and the flash position worked OK (f32 was too dark, f8 let too much ambient light in for the exposurte time I wanted).

Once I was happy with the effect, I then stuck the camera on the tripod, locked the focus just in front of a black tv screen and set the timer. I had a few duff attempts where I hadn’t managed to get myself in the shot, but finally got myself in the right place. The Flash was set to first curtain sync, so as soon as it fired, I slipped out of the shot and then used a keyring torch (one of the cheapy single LED ones) to paint in some swirly light.

See this Image on Dave Frost's Flickr Stream
Empty promises

Post processing was just a bit of sharpening and a conversion to black and white.
Aperture – F11
Shutter Speed – 10 Seconds
ISO – 100

Topical – Especially after the events up in Cumbria this weekend. Was on the M25 this morning on my wayu round to the office, enjoying the views at a sedate 20 mph for most of the 63 miles. Bored witless with only Wogan on the radio to keep me company, I thought it might be an idea to try and capture the essence of the moment.
Actually, that’s crap. I was just bored so I got the camera out. I cannot stress enough how dangerous (and illegal) it is to use an SLR whilst driving, and can assure you that I was perfectly stationary at the time.

Road Trip  the M25 at its very best
Road Trip - the M25 at it's very best
Quite liked the effect of the lights in the rain for this one. But remember kids, clunk click every trip.

More From Adventure Island – Southend on Sea

Another couple from our afternoon jolly on Saturday, all again from Southend, Adventure Island.

Rage - Adventure Island
Rage - Adventure Island
. This is the Rage – A vertical climp leads to a terrifying vertical drop before being thrown through a loop the loop and some very tight bends. You may just be able to make out the Cars coming down the drop – They moved so fast that the 1/4 Second shutter speed wasn’t enough to really capture anything other than a smudge as it sped past.

This one is Pharoe’s Revenge – This time a 1.6 second exposure with a narrow F22 captured the movement nicely. Somewhere on there are Tommy and Alfie.

Southend on Sea, Adventure Island
Southend on Sea, Adventure Island

Light trails and long exposures

Was messing around yesterday evening, trying out some ideas for this months Talk Photography competition.¬† The standard this month is unbeleivably high so I need to up my game considerably (especially after last month’s disappointing entry that may have been a little too out of the box. This shot was achieved by resting the camera

Light Trail in my living room.

on the sofa, manually focussed on a point at the other end of the room. The aperture was around f22 or f32 with a corresponding shutterspeed of around 10 to 15 seconds. With the camera on Timer, I released the shutter and then swiftly made my way to the other end of the room. I did have mixed results, with this one being on of my favourites.