Sunday, May 30, 2010

A Project ... copying past memories

Family have been on to me to hand over old family photos, not those which have been handed down to me but those illustrating our family's activities. So in due course I got myself a film and slide copier from the Warehouse complete with eding programme which seems to work reasonably well. Although at only $130 plus freight it cannot be compared to one which I saw on TradeMe which apparently cost $1600 new ... though quite a bit of the difference could be tooling up for a short production run and digital things were very expensive only a few years ago.

My simple little 3.3Mp camera cost me over $2000 while the latest camera I got 10Mp was only $900 a year or two back. Simple P&S cameras, less features, smaller only cost a few hundred ... many more pixels than my original Canon s20 which is a very good though simple camera.

Way back around 1980 I was shooting colour negative film and I suspect the dyes have faded with the passage of time and not really keeping the films in 'proper' conditions .. just in glassine bags in a number of houses without controlled temperature.

We had a Golden Labrador, apparently she was not pure but had 1/64th English Sheepdog who featured in the film Chitti Chitti Bang Bang
She was bought to be a companion for our son, his dog, although when he went overseas she became my wife's dog.

Started being called Putty but somehow this became Bub. Endless energy for people to throw stick both on land and onto water.

So here is the beautiful girl waiting for us

She long ago went to Dog's Heaven after about fourteen years and her successor also spent fifteen years with us and she's been gone about five years so it is a real memory from our family's past.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010


The trouble with giving people 'names' is that they become "pseudonymous, not anonymous" and some will say that is a bad thing ... if you believe in what you say you should stand up to get your head cut off.
Personally I am quite sure anyone with a modicum of computer skills can find out who I am and after all this time [ compared to common computer usage .. post Sinclairs ZX80, of which I once owned an eighth share] I'm reluctant to change. I think 'Chubby' is quite a nice nickname. A mildly horrifying thought is that the moment you say anything on the web it is likely to be picked up by the search engines and it is usually the comments that on reflection one would wish to be forgotten, like this one probably :-(

Further to the ZX80 the other seven couldn't understand why somebody who was just an 'operator' as opposed to a 'electronic technician' like all them could be interested in a computer. I remember when we gathered to be shown our new purchase and some thing like "a=4, b=2, a+b=6" was displayed on the screen and my comment was "WOW white man's magic!"

Sunday, May 9, 2010

A drink age?

Kiwiblog has a thread on this subject and reading through it am I glad that a single stubbie makes me sleepy thanks to my upbringing .. getting pretty drunk for the first time at 22yo [despite two years in the army and earlier 10yo being supplied with a couple of gin and oranges by best man and groomsman at a wedding. Groom was a army major and they were in the army too] and disliking the hangover and waste of money; though my guardian let me taste her Guiness [horrible!, put me off it for life]and have a shandy when out riding our bikes at around 12yo and virtually not drinking until my fifties when it was wine for medicinal purposes .. red wine good for the heart? But I guess I was also lucky in one sense that I didn't grow up with a bunch of freinds through until adulthood so no peer pressure, though obviously I missed a lot of fellowship becuase of that.

I object to any age limit for parents supplying a drink, suitably watered down maybe, to their own children, but not others without specific permision from their parents. If a drinking age make policing easier I agree with that, it makes better sense than raising the buying age. Agree that prohibition makes it more attractive for the consumer trying to rebel from their upbringers and the slygrog merchant making a buck from selling the stuff. The gangs have enough options without adding alchohol to the list of drugs they would supply.

Trying another way

My card reader in the computer isn't working and refused to accept the mini card from my cellphone in its adaptor. Wanted to send a snap I had taken to family. It is now some days latter and the blooms have passed their best so it is no good getting out one of my 'proper' cameras. [ been sick for a couple of days]

So I tried an experiment which by all I've read would work. Put the mini-card in its adaptor into my Panasonic FZ50 and connect it by cable to computer USB input. It worked! and I have been able to send the shot to DiL.

Rosebush is about three feet high sitting in a 2'6" raised bed so cellphone was held above my head pointing down at blooms ... cellphone with its little button for a trigger is horrible to use and most times ambient light is too strong to view the screen properly .. plus my eyesight doesn't like LCD screens .. much prefers an Electronic viewfinder.
The bush is several years old and for its first years was planted in the ground, to be transfered into a pot when I though I was going to change the flowerbed into a carpark, then when a raised bed was made it was replanted with plenty of depth for its roots ... so it has rewarded me hansomely for its freedom regained :-)

A visitor on my letterbox

Been out helping a lady in distress, her microwave has given up after 34 years of use, "Everything works except the light bulb which gave up a few weeks ago and the heating thingie". Yes well I guess the heating thingie is what we have these machines for :-).
For taking the machine from above her fridge, gosh it was heavy, to the repair shop for a diagnosis, I was treated to lunch in town and when I got home I found this fellow on my letterbox. Would have liked to have used a smaller aperture [ taken at f/4 with zoom at 432mm Angle of view] but didn't want to reduce the shutter speed from 1/200 as I was hand holding ... whatever ... here he/she is ....

I could add that I was using my 2 dioptre close-up lens which brings me, the front element of the lens to about 13 inches from the subject with the focusing range of the camera lens ... unfortunately this meant that I couldn't support my hand with the end of the letterbox ... I guess maybe I should get myself a stronger CU lens but the '2' does for most things. Although I would call this a grasshopper I think maybe it should be called a cicada .... maybe they are the same thing? This was a much smaller beastie than others I have photographed which would have been twice as big, the body. Perhaps I should contratulate him for getting me to use one of my better cameras after a long interval, the cellphone is so handy for snaps and with me all the time I have my trousers on.

"Pukeko" A New Zealand native

I was cruising around after getting up early and looking for shots on Otago Peninsula and saw this bird quite close. Close and far is a relative term depending on the reach of the lens you are using. This morning I had x12 zoom plus my new 2.2 Raynox telephoto adaptor. The amazing thing about this photo, just a average record shot of the little beastie, is that I had forgtten to adjust the shutter speed from previous shots. So can you imagin get such a reasonable result hand holding, though probably leaning in my car seat and on the windosill, using a 950mm equivalent angle of view at 1/20. Obviously a fluke, a lucky fluke, and it has been sharpened in editing.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

'Peninsula Clouds'

Nothing very dramatic and I'm not sure why I should have taken it .. but I did .. so included to show I have my off days. Though really I guess we all have lots of trigger presses that don't really make it for every one that does.

Monday, May 3, 2010

"Pagent Girl"

Experimenting with combining threshold with normal tonality as a means to isolate the subject material from surrounds.