I hope everyone has a happy, enjoyable, and prosperous New Year.
Thank you for all the comments and likes over the last 12 months. 2020!! where has the time gone? fugit inreparabile tempus.
Early morning with the ducks.
From my files.
In the foothills of the Ḥajar Mountains there are many tracks that have probably been in use since the Bronze Age if not before, quite a number are still well-trodden to this day. They would follow a Falaj (water channel) system to its source or between two villages and could quite often be several kilometres long.
This is the sort of view that would usually tell me it’s time I turned back, although sometimes if determined enough, I would take my boots off and wade. When the route I was following had a definite final destination and the water was not very deep, then wet I would get !! Quite often I would have been walking for 3 or 4 hours and if I wanted to find an abandoned village or the possibility of rock art, I would only have to make a return journey. Not being able to mark ‘done’ on my list, other than because it was just not possible to overcome an obstacle, would not satisfy my curiosity.
Bent old tree.
Yashica Mat 124G on Ilford HP5.
This was a negative that I was never able to print in the darkroom, I messed up the processing by using a rather hot stopbath by mistake. It caused mild reticulation & a slight increase in the film grain. I had filed the roll away and thought nothing more about it until I came across it again the other day, but nothing ventured nothing gained. Could I scan it and make a digital print that came close to my original visualisation ?
I used Lightroom and Nik software then printed it on matte art paper that has a slight textured surface, so although this Jpeg doesn’t give a true representation it’s close enough and I am pleased with the print.
Reading Sir William Blackstone’s Commentaries on the Laws of England: and in book 1 “The rights of persons” I came across a quote that I thought rather pertinent for what’s going on here in UK at the moment:-
England can never be ruined except by a Parliament.
It was said by the lord treasurer William Cecil, 1ˢᵗ Baron Burghley (1520 – 1598), the chief advisor of Queen Elizabeth I for most of her reign, twice Secretary of State and Lord High Treasurer from 1572. (From The Encyclopædia Britannica).
For those wondering why I would read such a book, curiosity got the better of me after noticing it being refereed to rather a lot just recently.
Nikon f4, AF Zoom-Nikkor 35-135mm f/3.5~4.5 on Ilford HP5 plus.
The lake wasn’t the only thing frozen when I made this.
Nikon F4 with Tokina 35-70 f2.8 AIs AT-X lens.
Cold & frosty day.
Nikon F4 with Tokina 35-70 f2.8 AIs AT-X lens on Ilford HP5 400 pushed to 800.
Storm clouds over derelict farm house.
Update: I kept looking at the grain in this image scan and thinking, it doesn’t look right for a T-Max 400 film; I was right.
It was in fact Ilford HP5 developed in Rodinal: the confusion arose because this image was at the end of a series I had made of storm clouds. I changed over to T-Max ( having run out of Ilford) and continued, but kept the negatives together as they were all of the same subject. That will teach me to pay more attention to the edge markings, getting lazy !! with using my Nikon Df/800 and always having the metadata confirm what my settings were.
Nikon F4, Nikkor 50mm f1.8 AFD lens on Ilford FP4
Not sure if this is an old Drovers’ way marker or a ‘Standing Stone’ that has been bypassed by the track.
A drovers’ road, drove [road] or droveway is a route for moving livestock on foot from one place to another, such as to market or between summer and winter pasture Many drovers’ roads were ancient routes of unknown age; others are known to date back to medieval times
A rather nice walk, although it can be muddy on a wet day.
This gate (a short cut from where my daughter lives) leads to the Black Horse pub (see thumbnail image below) whose building dates from the 14th century.
The Black Horse pub – Clapton in Gordano.
Some very nice beer can be had at this pub.
Memories of warmer weather in Somerset.
A flower from my daughter’s garden, probably gone now the cold weather has returned. Winter is on its way and the clocks go back this weekend in UK.
Changing the time twice a year was first established by the Summer Time Act of 1916, after a campaign by builder William Willett, so that evenings have more daylight and mornings have fewer daylight hours. It’s been changed a couple of times since then, notably during WW II when ‘Double’ summer time was introduced, 1941 to 1945 when Britain was GMT+2. Between 1968 and 1971 the clocks stayed at GMT+1 but statistics showed an increase in traffic accidents during the morning hours but a substantial decrease in the evening so UK reverted back to GMT/BST changes each year. Beginning at one o’clock, Greenwich mean time, in the morning of the last Sunday in March and ending at one o’clock, Greenwich mean time, in the morning of the last Sunday in October.
I hate it, it’s not natural, messes with my body clock, I’ve only just begun to get it into my head that in UK I can’t go shopping late evening, as most shops close after 17:00 hrs.
Nikon F4, Nikkor 43-86 Ai f3.5 lens (soft focus filter) and Ilford FP4 Plus.
Trip, trap, trip, trap! went the bridge
Who’s that tripping over my bridge? roared the troll
Oh, it is only I, the tiniest Billy Goat Gruff
A country walk with Nikon F4, Nikkor 43-86 Ai f3.5 lens and Ilford FP4 Plus.
A bridge in Bath – Somerset, I think.
Image scanned then adjusted for noise & contrast in P.S/CS6.
The problem with going through old files and negatives is finding forgotten and unidentifiable images. That is exactly what this is, all the negative page said was ‘Pinhole experiments’ with 35mm camera and body cap, it had several badly exposed and/or very blurred images but this one was the best.
I remember reading about the possibility of using a body cap drilled for a pinhole lens, but cannot find the modified cap since moving.
I do remember using the Nikon F4/Nikon F2Sb after making the lens from a drilled body cap which I then fitted with a disc made from very thin aluminium with a precisely centred hole. The ‘f’ stop was around f:200, calculated by using the following.
f-stop = focal length / aperture diameter
Figures estimated by using a ruler and dividers, was about 0.25 mm and the distance of the pinhole to film plane about 50 mm.
f-stop = 50 mm / 0.25 mm = 200.
For those who wondered what the symbol of a circle bisected by a line was on their SLR, it denotes the point of focus for images at infinity; the film plane.
The disc was sanded, cleaned in Isopropyl alcohol then glued onto the lens cap and all painted with matt black paint.
Why I have never carried on with these experiments I have no idea and the memory jog only came after looking at pinhole images posted on Kevin Allan’s excellent blog filmphotography.blog/2019/09/25/ondu-pinholes-hexham-abbey/ Well worth visiting for his images and articles about cameras, materials & techniques.
Llanthony Priory in the Vale of Ewyas, within the Black Mountains area of the Brecon Beacons National Park south east Wales.
An Augustinian Priory until the dissolution of the Monasteries by Henry VIII.
As can be seen from the J.M.W Turner picture below, between 1794 & 2019 the site has reduced in size considerably.
(From Tate Images & Google)
The artist J.M.W Turner’s 1794 painting of Llanthony Priory
In the early 1100s a Norman nobleman, Walter de Lacy, took shelter from a rainstorm in a ruined chapel. Inspired by its remoteness and serenity, he decided to build a church. Others were soon drawn there, finding it a place for solitary prayer, and by 1118 a group of monks from England converted it to Llanthony Priory.
Llanthony’s isolation placed the Priory in a vulnerable position, not helped by the local inhabitants resenting the English monks occupying Welsh land. They repeatedly attacked the building; it was also targeted by thieves, so by 1135 the monks were forced to retreat over the border to Gloucester where they founded Llanthony Secunda. Between 1186 and 1217, again probably around 1325 building work took place allowing the Priory to become fully functional again and on Palm Sunday, April 4, 1327, Edward II visited. Its regained status was not to last, in the early 15th century it was attacked yet again, this time by the Welsh prince Owain Glyndwr as part of his campaign to recapture Welsh land from the English. This started a period of decline and the Priory finally closed in 1538 during the Dissolution of the Monasteries by King Henry VIII.