Thursday, 3 November 2011

Eric Morecambe, Morecambe Bay, Lancashire

Unveiled by the Queen in 1999, the slightly larger than life-sized statue depicts Eric Morecambe in one of his characteristic poses with a pair of binoculars around his neck (he was a keen ornithologist). The statue is set against the stunning backdrop of Morecambe Bay and the Lake District hills, and people queue to have their photo taken alongside it. The statue and the arena below it are equally sensational at night, with superb lighting effects bathing the area. [Source]
Photograph Details: 
Nikon D7000
Focal length 18mm
exp: 1/6

Wednesday, 2 November 2011

The Windmill, Parbold, Lancashire

On a trip back "Oop Norf" to see my family (and baby niece for the first time) I stopped off on the way back to my parents' house from my brother's to snap this shot. With no tripod, memory cards or camera charger the photography on the trip was rather underwhelming which was such a massive shame. 

The windmill sits on the Leeds-Liverpool canal, the longest canal in Northern England at 127 miles long, and it took 46 years to build (almost twice as long as I've been alive for) and at a cost of 5x the original budget! The idea for it was first proposed in 1765. The Canal Act passed in 1770 was for a route from Liverpool to Leeds via Parbold, Walton-le-Dale (just south of Preston), Colne and Skipton, with a branch from Burscough towards the River Ribble, a branch from Parbold to Wigan, a great aqueduct at Whalley and a branch from Shipley to Bradford. [Source]

I took this one with the camera propped on the door window sill of the car

Photograph Details: 
Nikon D7000
Focal length 18mm
exp: 25 sec

Tuesday, 1 November 2011

Sizergh Castle & Gardens

This imposing house, at the gateway to the Lake District, stands proud in a rich and beautiful garden, which includes a pond, lake, National Collection of Hardy Ferns and a superb limestone rock garden. Still lived in by the Strickland family, Sizergh has many tales to tell and certainly feels lived in, with centuries-old portraits and fine furniture sitting alongside modern family photographs. The exceptional wood panelling culminates in the Inlaid Chamber, returned here in 1999 from the Victoria & Albert Museum. The 647-hectare (1,600-acre) estate includes limestone pasture, orchards and ancient, semi-natural woodland. [Source]

The house itself is actually quite impressive, as are the gardens... However, the stewards in each room are very annoying! A mobile phone went off briefly in one room and the woman seemed to get rather upset about it, so much so as to go in to the next room and moan at the people in there too! It was also VERY dark in some of the rooms, for many reasons, none of which I'm going to tell you about. They did say however that they were waiting for a lamp to be brought up, presumibly so they can turn another one off as the woman (Mrs Mobile) said that they weren't allowed the light levels to be any higher than they already were - for many reasons, none of which I'm going to tell you about either. Worth a visit? Yes, but you can't go until next year anyway now (yesterday was the last day the house was open for 2011), and bear in mind the fact that the stewards are just plain irritating...

Photograph Details:
Nikon D7000
Focal length 24mm
exp: 1/125

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Wednesday, 26 October 2011

Diwali - Festival Of Lights

Today is the start of the Festival of Lights (know as Diwali, Deepawali or Devali). This is an important festival in HinduismJainism, and Sikhism, celebrated for different reasons, occurring between mid-October and mid-November and is lasts for five days. For Hindus, Diwali is one of the most important festivals of the year and is celebrated in families by performing traditional activities together in their homes. For Jains, Diwali marks the attainment of moksha or nirvana by Mahavira in 527 BC. For Sikhs, Diwali is celebrated as Bandhi Chhor Diwas (The Celebration of Freedom), and celebrates the release from prison of the sixth guru, Guru Hargobind, who also rescued 52 Hindu kings held captive by Mughal Emperor with him in the Gwalior Fort in 1619.

Deepavali is an official holiday in IndiaNepalSri LankaMyanmarMauritiusGuyanaTrinidad & TobagoSurinameMalaysiaSingapore, and Fiji.
The name "Diwali" is a contraction of "Deepavali" (Sanskritदीपावली Dīpāvalī), which translates into "row of lamps". Diwali involves the lighting of small clay lamps (diyas or dīpas) in Sanskritदीप) filled with oil to signify the triumph of good over evil. During Diwali, all the celebrants wear new clothes and share sweets and snacks with family members and friends.
Diwali commemorates the return of Lord Rama, along with Sita and Lakshmana, from his 14-year-long exile and vanquishing the demon-king Ravana. In joyous celebration of the return of their king, the people of Ayodhya, the Capital of Rama, illuminated the kingdom with earthen diyas and by bursting firecrackers.
The festival starts with Dhanteras on which most Indian business communities begin their financial year. The second day of the festival, Naraka Chaturdasi, marks the vanquishing of the demon Naraka by Lord Krishna and his wife Satyabhama.Amavasya, the third day of Deepawali, marks the worship of Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth in her most benevolent mood, fulfilling the wishes of her devotees. Amavasya also tells the story of Lord Vishnu, who in his dwarf incarnation vanquished the Bali, and banished him to Patala. It is on the fourth day of Deepawali, Kartika Shudda Padyami, that Bali went to patala and took the reins of his new kingdom in there. The fifth day is referred to as Yama Dvitiya (also called Bhai Dooj), and on this day sisters invite their brothers to their homes.
Besides Hindus, Sikhs and Jains also celebrate Diwali.

Tuesday, 18 October 2011

Evening Lights

Here is a photo I got with my new Nikon D7000 the other night when I was messing about with the white balance settings. Just for the sake of it I popped it into Photoshop and ran the auto colour correction but I was disappointed with the results - they came out fairly boring - so I decided to keep and post this one, it's much more dramatic.

Photograph Details:

  • Nikon D7000
  • focal length 18mm
  • ISO-100
  • exp: 1/10
  • f3.5

Friday, 14 October 2011


The Pansy is a large group of hybrid plants cultivated as garden flowers. Pansies are derived from Viola species Viola tricolor hybridized with other viola species, these hybrids are referred to as Viola × wittrockiana or less commonly Viola tricolor hortensis. The name "pansy" also appears as part of the common name for other Viola species that are wildflowers in Europe. Some unrelated species, such as the Pansy Monkeyflower, also have "pansy" in their name.

Thursday, 13 October 2011


In woodworking and construction, a nail is a pin-shaped, sharp object of hard metal or alloy used as a fastener. Formerly wrought iron, today's nails are typically made of steel, often dipped or coated to prevent corrosion in harsh conditions or improve adhesion. Ordinary nails for wood are usually of a soft, low-carbon or "mild" steel (about 0.1% carbon, the rest iron and perhaps a trace of silicon or manganese). Nails for concrete are harder, with 0.5-0.75% carbon.

Wednesday, 12 October 2011


Bluebonnet lupins, notably the Texas Bluebonnet (Lupinus texensis) are the state flower ofTexasUSAThe species are mostly herbaceous perennial plants 0.3–1.5 m (0.98–4.9 ft) tall, but some are annual plants and a few are shrubs up to 3 m (10 ft) tall—see also bush lupin—with one species (Lupinus jaimehintoniana from the Mexican state of Oaxaca) a tree up to 8 m (26 ft) high with a trunk 20 cm (7.9 in) in diameter. They have a characteristic and easily recognised leaf shape, with soft green to grey-green leaves which in many species bear silvery hairs, often densely so. The leaf blades are usually palmately divided into 5–28 leaflets or reduced to a single leaflet in a few species of the southeastern United States. The flowers are produced in dense or open whorls on an erect spike, each flower 1–2 cm long, with a typical peaflower shape with an upper 'standard' or 'banner', two lateral 'wings' and two lower petalsfused as a 'keel'. Due to the flower shape, several species are known as bluebonnetsor quaker bonnets. The fruit is a pod containing several seeds.

Why not get some for your own garden today!

Photograph Details: Nikon D40, focal length 185mm, ISO-200, exp: 1/200, f4.8

Monday, 10 October 2011


Photograph Details: Nikon D40, focal length 18mm, ISO-200, exp: 30 sec, f3.5

Sunday, 9 October 2011

Static Motion

I thought I'd post this photograph, despite its flaws. It was a 13 second exposure which shows the motion of the sky, with the landscape in the foreground being still. I think it has a quiet calm about it.

Buy the Moon film (2009) on DVD and Blu-Ray now:

Photograph Details: Nikon D40, focal length 18mm, ISO-200, exp: 30 sec, f3.5

Saturday, 8 October 2011

Light Pollution

Photograph Details: Nikon D7000, focal length 18mm, ISO-100, exp: 30 sec, f7.1

Shot with my new baby, the Nikon D7000. I was really hoping to get some images of the Milky Way this evening now I've had a few hours to play with the D7000, but this was all I could get...

Nikon D7000

Wahoo! Finally got my new baby - a brand new spanking Nikon D7000! Am I chuffed? well, take a guess! 

I'm still trying to learn this new beast of a camera (of which the quickest shutter speed is 1/8000 sec and a maximum ISO of over 25000) Truly staggering numbers, fitting of a staggering camera body! 

I've spent the day snapping away today in somewhat miserable weather conditions (it's been moody and overcast all day, with a splattering of light drizzle) but that hasn't stopped me. 

Wednesday, 5 October 2011


hatchet (from the French hachette, a diminutive form of the French hache, 'axe') is a single-handed striking tool with a sharp blade used to cut and split wood. Hatchets may also be used for hewing when making flattened surfaces on logs; when the hatchet head is optimized for this purpose it is called a broadaxe.

Tuesday, 4 October 2011

Nikon D800

Wow, the rumours are spreading fast on Twitter today about the new Nikon D800. An official announcement is due within the next 2 months or so (possibly sooner) but who knows with Nikon.

They've recently released the newer updated processer the "Expeed 3" duel core processor in their new interchangable lens camera the Nikon 1. Will the D800 have the same amazing piece of kit or another even better one.
Why? Because speculation puts the D800 at a whopping 36 megapixel sensor. Either way, which ever way you look at it, its big! And so is the price... an estimated ¥300,000, or £2543.18 or $3912.92
It ain't cheap, but cheaper then Nikon's current D3X and D3S sitting squarely inbetween the D700 (currently approx £1849.95) and the D3S (currently approx £3594)
Not too shabby, but still, not exactly cheap....

Buy a Nikon Camera Today

Monday, 3 October 2011

New Forest Panorama

Photograph Details: Nikon D40, focal length 27mm, exp: 1/125-1/200, ISO-200, f/5.6-7.1

I took this picture a few weeks back in the New Forest. It is composed of 8 photographs taken just by moving the camera to the right each time, without a tripod (you can tell!) It was stitched together using autostitch and cropped in Photoshop Elements.

Saturday, 1 October 2011

Thursday, 29 September 2011

Fish Eye Milky Way

The Greek philosopher Democritus (450–370 BC) proposed that the bright band on the night sky known as the Milky Way might consist of distant stars. Aristotle (384–322 BC), however, believed the Milky Way to be caused by "the ignition of the fiery exhalation of some stars which were large, numerous and close together" and that the "ignition takes place in the upper part of the atmosphere, in the region of the world which is continuous with the heavenly motions." The Neoplatonist philosopher Olympiodorus the Younger (c. 495–570 AD) criticized this view, arguing that if the Milky Way were sublunary it should appear different at different times and places on the Earth, and that it should have parallax, which it does not. In his view, the Milky Way was celestial. This idea would be influential later in the Islamic world.

Thursday, 8 September 2011

Milky Way

One of the main reasons I have not been blogging recently is that I've taken what was once a feint affinity for the stars to a new level. I purchased a small telescope and started looking at astrophotography in a whole new way.

Wednesday, 7 September 2011

Osborne House

Osborne House is a former royal residence in East CowesIsle of WightUK. The house was built between 1845 and 1851 for Queen Victoria and Prince Albert as a summer home and rural retreat. Prince Albert designed the house himself in the style of an Italian Renaissance palazzo. The builder was Thomas Cubitt, the London architect and builder whose company built the main façade of Buckingham Palace for the royal couple in 1847. An earlier smaller house on the site was demolished to make way for a new and far larger house.

Pastures New


Its been well over a year since I was last on here. Looking back over the whole blog I don't really like it and maybe thats the reason why. Perhaps its because I have been busy with other projects, perhaps I've been lazy. Who knows. Either way the point is that I'm going to try to redesign the blog and start posting again.

As for the redesign, I'm not sure if it will be a huge difference, or whether or not it will simply be a few tweeks. You'll just have to check back to find out! As for the posting, I'm not making any promises that the posts will be every day (in fact once a week is probably a much more realistic target to aim for).

Anyway, by November I will have been running this blog for three years and its about time it actually became interesting!

So hope to see you folks again real soon

Bye for now!

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