About a month ago, we were lucky enough to spend a weekend with our eldest son and family, at a cottage in Lynmouth, North Devon. On the way there, we took a scenic route along the coast of North Somerset and I snapped this groyne at Blue Anchor Bay.
Initial thoughts on the image were not promising, but today I was looking for something to try out Silver Efex Pro 2, now that Google have kindly made it a free download. I stumbled on this one, and found the program pretty user friendly. I chose one of the presets which gave this ‘grainy’ look, boosted the contrast a little more and arrived at this.
I think it is much more pleasing to my eye that the original colour image.
Maybe it is an overly simple shot, being no more than a row of old wooden posts, leading off to the water, and eventually to the coast of Wales in the distance. There are a few Gulls on the shoreline, and the grainy processing has done them no favours, but I still quite like the final result.
There would have been many alternative ways to present this shot that would have proved more attractive to some eyes, perhaps on a different day to my eyes, but this is today’s effort.
I didn’t really have any intentions to photograph the recent Solar Eclipse, and as it turned out, this was just as well. Our home town was fairly densely covered with cloud and mist throughout the period when the eclipse should have been visible. There were, however, a few opportunities to glimpse this event through very brief gaps in the cloud and mist and here are a couple of shots, just to prove it.
I’d already decided that I needed a 10 stop ND on the camera for safety, and I didn’t really want to use my E-M1, just in case the sun was bright and might damage the sensor. For this reason, my first shot was with only a 12-60 mm lens, which ND filter fitted. Much too heavy a crop was required, but it was only a minute or two before the maximum eclipse here so I thought it worth keeping.
After that, the fog settled in until about 10-15 minutes before the eclipse was completely over. There was then a very brief opportunity, by which time I had fitted a longer lens and held the ND filter in front of it.
Not good photos, but at least they remind me that I did see the solar eclipse.
This shot of Portland and the Harbour were taken from the Nothe Gardens in Weymouth. I guess that it would have been better if I’d had a ND Grad, but there we are. I thought about cropping the burned out sun out of the frame, but I don’t think that the composition would have worked. I suppose that I should have tried a hand held HDR bracket (yes, no tripod with me), but I don’t think that I originally thought the image would be worth it. I now think that maybe I was wrong.
In my last post, I said that I had just been away for a week on the Costa del Sol, and that we did have some Sol. This isn’t always the case when we decide to have a week away from the British weather. This post is just to prove that the sun did indeed shine, as well as test whether I have been able to reconnect my blog to my Facebook account.
This shot is of the lighthouse at the coast near Torrox. Although I quite liked the ‘wavy’ railings, it is really to show that the skies were clear. The con trail of the airliner heading home from Malaga airport was an added bonus.
Since we did have a good week away, I may well post a few more images from the Costa, and surrounding countryside.
I’m not sure why I took this, other than that I turned around while walking up the hill at Hardingtom Moor, and thought, ‘I quite like that sky’. Clearly it had not been a very rewarding photo walk!
When I viewed the image on the computer screen, I found that it was even less inspiring, with a large lock of completely unfocused birds in the frame. Knowing that most viewers would immediately tell me to clean my sensor, I thought I had better remove them.
This is the resulting image, for what it is worth.
I’m publishing this quick post after about 33 hours of wakefulness, well maybe 32 hours because I may have grabbed 1 hour on the plane, returning from Maine. I have already posted one sunrise from the deck outside my son’s bedroom, which can be seen here. This second sunrise was the next morning and was quite different, but equally spectacular, so I thought I would post this one as well.
Actually, the weather wasn’t too bad on this day, though overall we did have a fair bit of rain.
We have just travelled to visit our son and his family in Freeport, Maine. It was great to spend time with our Granddaughters again.
While we were there, we spent a couple of days minding them, while their Mum and Dad had a well earned break on their own. This meant that we were able to enjoy the same Maine sunrise that Neil and Rachel enjoy from their bedroom deck for a couple of days, at least when the weather allows. This was the sunrise on the first of these mornings.