I wish everyone a very merry Xmas & Happy New year. 🎄
Another from Burton Agnes: this was made with the wrong aperture so had lots of motion blur and I nearly threw it out. The place is very old, cold and damp, so with a little added diffusion along with printing it on Ilford multigrade FB art 300 paper, it should give more of a feel for the place. Well that’s my excuse anyway 😉
Info about Ilford MG Art 300 paper, from their site:-
Black & white, silver gelatin coated, 100% Cotton Rag based darkroom paper. This premium quality, variable contrast paper delivers a slightly warm image tone on a neutral to cool white acid-free base. This unique paper has a textured matt surface with an ‘eggshell’ sheen finish making it a traditional fine art darkroom paper unlike any other. It is the perfect complement to showcase stunning black & white fine art images and is ideal for toning, hand colouring and retouching.
This one was posted here in 2013 but was made around the beginning of 1990 if I remember correctly, just before the first Gulf War.
Will print and add it to two others I am working on for (I hope) a triptych.
P.s. This is the problem with going through old negatives: either I can’t decide, think I can do better printing or scanning and will it work with others I would like to use. Hummmm decisions.
I have a darkroom log book somewhere in all my stuff, just haven’t come across it yet, I know I packed it because it has a lot of information about film, paper, developers etc; so rather useful and should have this image info in it.
Another for the printer, although I will probably make a conventional darkroom print as well and then make a decision which gets on the wall.
I am still working my way through computer files, but have about 3500 negatives/E6 slides which need cataloguing and either scanning or printing in the darkroom – or both.
Also reading this book, it was one I should have got when it was available from the bookshops in 2010, a copy from Amazon would now cost me £118. new and £80. used: that will teach me !
Our library in Driffield (yes we still have one) has found a copy through the Bibliographic department, so have got it on extended loan for a small administrative fee. They are so helpful and nothing seems too much trouble for them.
Even though Oman had always been familiar to travellers sailing between Europe and India or Persia, it was its coast alone that was known. Greeks and Romans had charted it, medieval merchants traded on it, and in the early sixteenth century the Portuguese conquered its main towns, yet the interior of Oman was all but entirely unknown and would remain so until the early nineteenth century. Only after the ejection of the Portuguese in 1650 and an independent Oman had built an empire of its own, stretching round the Indian Ocean from India to Zanzibar, did Muscat, the capital, start to be visited by western powers eager to obtain commercial concessions and political influence. In the nineteenth century, for the first time, a very few, mainly English, explorers ventured inland and embarked on the true discovery of Oman. But even that was sporadic. As long as there was a powerful ruler, the travellers were protected, but by the late nineteenth century the rulers in Muscat had lost control over the interior and it was not until well into the twentieth century that explorers such as Wilfred Thesiger could investigate the south and that the oil companies could begin to chart the centre and the west. Oman was the last Arab country to be fully explored by western travellers and this book examines and discusses the ways in which the emergent knowledge of Oman was propagated in the West, from the earliest times to 1970, by explorers, missionaries, diplomats, artists, geologists and naturalists, and by those scholars who gradually uncovered the manuscripts and antiquities that allowed them to piece together the history of the area.
Testing my Canon PIXMA Pro9000 printer (with the Mk II print head – long story which is on my blog somewhere) after it had been in storage for about a year. I am pleased to say, all it needed was a single head clean function carrying out along with new inks and now works perfectly. Not bad for a printer that was boxed-up in Oman, spent five months in storage there, travelled by sea and stored here in UK for another six months. The only packing preparation it was given was a clean, remove the inks and put the print head in its original foil pack with silica-gel, press out as much air as I could and seal with tape. I am a happy bunny 🙂
I can now work on some prints for hanging on the wall of our new house, such as the one above from October 2013.
All I need is to decide what paper I will use: always had either Premium Fine Art Smooth or Pro Premium Matte (or their older equivalents) from the Pixma Pro range by Canon. But being back here in UK, the range of papers for both traditional darkroom work & digital printing are almost limitless. Bit like film, instead of hearing “gosh you don’t still use film do you?” I am spoilt for choice. It makes up for the (forgotten) dreadfully changing weather & very expensive fuel prices.
Recalling an old folk tale that I remember from when I was knee-high to a grasshopper; it was a sign of a coming bad winter – we shall see. Especially as the two Holly trees are beginning to show the same. Autumn is well & truly on its way, the very large Ash has filled the garden with fallen leaves in the last week or so.
Although we now live in a small town, we have a number of large trees in the garden, horses pass by the house and a regular flow of farm machinery gives it a feeling of being in the country rather than a town. Double plus good 🙂
What is this life if, full of care,
We have no time to stand and stare.
No time to stand beneath the boughs
And stare as long as sheep or cows.
No time to see, when woods we pass,
Where squirrels hide their nuts in grass.
No time to see, in broad daylight,
Streams full of stars, like skies at night.
No time to turn at Beauty’s glance,
And watch her feet, how they can dance.
No time to wait till her mouth can
Enrich that smile her eyes began.
A poor life this is if, full of care,
We have no time to stand and stare.
William Henry Davies. (1871 – 1940)
Tower Tombs at Shir/Jaylah.
From my files: I made several visits after hearing reports by locals describing towers & later reports from a helicopter pilot who noted these strange towers while flying over the area.
See link below for a very detailed and interesting report by: Paul Yule and Gerd Weisgerber on these and other tombs in Oman. Well worth a read.
Link: Tombs in Oman.
This beach gets big waves and a dangerous undertow during the ‘Khareef’ when the Monsoon winds hit around June to August, but for the rest of the year it’s perfect.
I loved the solitude of the area and could walk or sit for hours: never camping though. The odd time I have camped on beaches has never really filled me with enthusiasm, as the sand is not like the desert. Beach sand clings and gets everywhere, tent, boots, clothes, food & worst of all my Guinness 😉