Tuesday, 21 December 2010

Bits & Pieces from September

Lunch in Castle Park
A well-travelled bike
One of my favourite buildings in Bristol - just a fantastic colour ; Tasty lunch from the genuine Italians in St Nick's Market, eaten by the river in Castle Park ; A little bit of eccentricity in the midst of the concrete mass of Broadmead.

Rusty Tractor
Rustiness & decay, countryside style ; A view to make me nostalgic - the Somerset Levels ; Bringing the outside in - hops from the hedgerow with added wildlife.

A gaggle of geese (or ducks?) at the house of RWA artist Lucy Willis who does the most lovely watercolours, with a liberal amount of Venice. She has a great way with light. Mum & I visited her house when it was open as part of the Somerset Art Weeks.

Saturday, 20 November 2010

Hestercombe II

This has been a while coming, but here's the next installment of new camera at Hestercombe, yay!
See my previous post for some explanation of what Hestercombe is. I went with the lovely Niall.

Round Pond
View down into the formal garden from the round pond (with a Niall in)
Niall's photo, up into the water feature
False Orange Blossom?
False orange blossom, it smells lovely
Balustrade + Japanese anemones
Long Terrace
A long rhene edged with stone
Sunny Creeper
Lovely red Virginia creeper

Leaves Above
More lovely creeper overhead
The central part of the formal garden, from above
Echinops + Bench
Lovely echinops & a well-weathered bench

All my photos from Hestercombe can be found in my Flickr set. These were all taken on my new Canon Ixus 105!

Saturday, 23 October 2010

Hestercombe I

Back in September the lovely Niall came down at the weekend and we had a little expedition to Hestercombe. There's a house and gardens but the house is private. The gardens are split into two parts; the landscaped valley and the formal terraced garden. I've been there plenty of times as it's near my house but Niall hadn't so we explored pretty thoroughly.
On the day we were there there was a "family" event going on. This meant that on one of the lawns there were a few stalls selling "gifts", a Punch & Judy show, a falconry display(with uncooperative birds), and a tent full of tasty local cheese, cider & similar products. We enjoyed the latter the most...

There are lots of walls like this
An old mill with a waterwheel
Upside Down Swan
A swan in the mill pond
The Vale of Taunton Deane
And pretty views.

Landscape gardens are generally cleverly built so that there are lots of constructed views. You can sit in a little Grecian temple and admire a carefully composed segment of landscape.

The swan the right way up.
Another, more tranquil pond
Wayfaring Tree
Wayfaring Tree, which we thought might be related to red currants

Through the trees
Nice view through the trees
Up the valley
And back up the valley

And that's enough for now, formality next time I think...

All my photos from Hestercombe can be found in my Flickr set. These were all taken on my new Canon Ixus 105!

Thursday, 21 October 2010

September Stuff

I don't normally think of September as a sunny month, but it clearly can be. My September was spent revising, hanging about at home and preparing to come back to Bristol. I was still using my sister's old camera & not taking many photos.

Up The Path
Wandering around Clifton having a break from revision on a sunny afternoon.
Afghans: Revision Fuel
Baking, the perfect form of procrastination.
Courgette & Cream Cheese Tart
And way of killing boredom when stuck at home.

My older sister and I were at home at the same time and we all went to Kilve beach. I seem not to have taken any photos of the actual beach (except maybe on film)
But there were pretty trees, I do love a pretty tree.
Smoking Chimney
And a nice overgrown industrial relic...

That was a strange sort of jumbly post but it fills in some gaps. My *new* camera arrived in mid-September so no more Kodak CX7350 from here on in! (hopefully)
Next time: Hestercombe with Niall.

Thursday, 14 October 2010

Moar Velvia! - Part II

The photos in my previous two posts (Orford Ness and Southwold) were all shot on Fuji Velvia 100F but I didn't finish the roll there! It came with me to Bristol and there were blue skies...

Cotham Moon
The moon was in evidence

Branching Out
I saw some pretty trees in the midst of legoland Bristol
And some berries
And leaves
Leafy Light
I was still admiring trees in the evening

Are plants becoming a bit of a theme with me?
They *are* pretty...

...and so are Photosoc
Laura & Dave

All these photos were taken on Fuji Velvia 100F with my Pentax ME Super.

Tuesday, 28 September 2010

Moar Velvia! - Part I

The Orford Ness photos from the previous post were all shot on Fuji Velvia 100F but I didn't finish the roll. It came with me to Southwold and produced these:

Valerian Shadows
Valerian shadows in Granny's yard
Some purply hollyhocks in Primrose Alley. I love the pebbled wall, the colour of the bricks, and the shadows.
Pink Hollyhock
And a pink hollyhock

Afternoon Sunlight
Afternoon sunlight in a bedroom
A convex mirror self-portrait á la Adam

On The Prom
Down on the prom
From The Beach Hut
The view from a beach hut
Busy day at the beach

The film then returned to Bristol with me, but that's another post...

All these photos were taken on Fuji Velvia 100F with my Pentax ME Super.

Sunday, 26 September 2010

Orford Ness - on film!

Finally I get round to it!
So about a month ago now the lovely Niall drove us both all the way across the country to Orford in Suffolk to see Orford Ness, via his parents who kindly put us up for the night & provided us with excellent picnic materials.
I expect I should probably explain what Orford Ness is (Click here for Wikipedia explanation instead.). It's a shingle spit just off the coast of Suffolk. And by just I mean just, the boat journey takes about a minute! You can see in the google map:

View Larger Map
So why did we drive all the way across the country to see an island? Well, it has an interesting history: As well as being an exciting geographical phenomenon (it's made of shingle which has many rare plants growing on it) it's got some interesting history and it shows. The whole island was acquired by the MOD years ago and used for secret military testing during WW-s I & II, lots of which involved dropping bombs on it! Later on, during the cold war, there was an Atomic Weapons Research Establishment base where detonators and bomb casings were tested. Apart from that there's the "Cobra Mist" site where experiments leading to RADAR happened. Now the BBC World Service and a Dutch station are broadcast from there.
Anyway, up until 1992 or so(?) the entire place was under the Official Secrets Act and the public didn't know what went on there. Since then it's been looked after by the National Trust, who open it to the public under the title of nature reserve! There are still restrictions on where you can go, mainly to stop you a) disturbing rare plants & destroying their habitat b) having a derelict building fall on you c) being blown up by some of the tonnes of unexploded ordnance that is probably in the midst of all that shingle! The paths are well marked...

After a 6am start & the final leg of the journey, we reached Orford, parked the car and bought our tickets in time for the 10am boat. Unfortunately they'd miscounted
and we got bumped off and onto the 10.20 boat (and called us Mr & Mrs Wold!). Oh well. The jolly boatman took us across at 10.20 and a nice lady on the other side sold us a guidebook with a map in, showed us what was open and told us about boats back; you have to get off the island by a certain time or you're stuck! The lady who sold us the tickets takes the names & phone numbers of all the visitors so they know exactly who's there.
So we set out and walked all over the place, down every possible path & around every building. The weather turned lovely and many photos were taken, by the end we were well-exercised and even slightly sunburnt!

Of course, when the sun came out so did the slide film! It's the Velvia 100F which I'd cross-processed before. Sadly it seems that my ME Super is metering oddly as all of these came out rather dark and under-exposed. Also the purple tinge is probably due to my own cack-handed scanning; I'd been taught how to scan black and white negatives and didn't think to alter the colours as I scanned my slides. Yes, I'm a n00b.

The view from the bridge across the creek
Mud by the creek with mysterious metal poking out...
The lovely lovely lighthouse
Niall photographing it
Plants growing in the shingle

The sparkly sparkly sea & shingly beach
Police Tower
The police tower, for spotting intruders!
Some of the amazing coloured rusty metal lying around
The view from one of the small buildings that now houses information

Inside one of the AWRE buildings, water has collected in a bomb bay & the ceiling's fallen in
Looking back out of the door
The same building from the outside
A plant struggling through the concrete

In the marshes, out towards the Cobra Mist site
Derelict Toilet
A derelict toilet in the plate store, this building was falling apart in the most amazing way
Rusty crusty switches, also in the plate store

And that's all I've got. No doubt if my small camera still worked there'd be lots of awfully white balanced photos that show the general vast emptiness of the place, but there aren't!

For more information on visiting the place see the National Trust's website.
For a better (and more prolific with film) photographer's take on Orford Ness there's Niall's Orford Ness blog post.
All these photos were taken on Fuji Velvia 100F with my Pentax ME Super. For the full set at Orford Ness, see my set on Flickr.