Tour of Ireland

The Tour of Ireland bicycle race passed through Blarney on it’s way to Cork City this afternoon. There was a sprint to the finish line in front of the local Catholic church before the cyclists made their way down the dual carriageway to Cork and up Patrick’s Hill, twice!

I was there ready to shoot the participants, but I was overwhelmed by their speed. It only took the main group about 11 seconds to come around the corner at one end of Blarney and disappear through the other end. I’m kicking myself I shot in Programme mode when I should have been in Aperture Priority mode, but I did get a few nice panning shots that froze the rider while the background blurred into smudges and streaks of colour.

The Canon 40D performed admirably. ISO was set to 100 because it was a bright day, AI Servo focus to track the riders and keep them in focus, and high speed continuous shooting mode which delivered 6.5fps. It was all over so quickly I barely had time to take a breath. I shot around 230 images while waiting and during the short time the racers were in Blarney. I knew I’d go a little mad with the shutter button, so I preselected Jpeg mode rather than my usual RAW mode.

Here’s a transcript of the commentary during the race. This bit, while serious, made me smile:

13.10: The race leader has been to see the race doctor, who reports a very unusual injury. He had a thorn embedded in his tongue – presumably from an overhanging branch, or perhaps even some dried fruit he ate – which was removed by the doctor. The thorn, not his tongue.

Hope you like the gallery, hopefully some of these shots will be posted here in single posts during the week!


Aperture ƒ/7.1
Camera Canon EOS 40D
Focal length 106mm
ISO 100
Shutter speed 1/200s

Red and White and Cork All Over

Red and White and Cork All Over

Young Cork supporters take the tour bus around the city a few weeks ago. Cork plays Kerry isn’t it today in a replay? Yes, I’m a big sports fan, honest.

Aperture ƒ/7.1
Camera Canon EOS 20D
Focal length 200mm
ISO 100
Shutter speed 1/250s

Red and White Flowers

Red and White Flowers

Colourful red and white flowers in the doorway of Supervalu in Blarney. I half thought about posting Damien’s picture from yesterday’s get together, especially after what lexia said but that’d be too cruel!

Aperture ƒ/8
Camera Canon EOS 20D
Focal length 144mm
ISO 100
Shutter speed 1/250s

No Alcohol

No Alcohol

No drinking on the street. This reminds me of an incident several years ago when I was in town with a group of friends on a Saturday night. This was before I started drinking, and my friends bought cans of beer in an off-license.
The guy behind the counter warned them the Guards were about watching for people drinking alcoholic beverages in public and they seemed to heed his warning until they got across the road and popped open their cans.

Sure enough, within 2 minutes a Garda was there! He took their names and addresses, and asked them to stop drinking, and of course gave them an awful fright. I followed a chastened group of lads to the pub. Don’t even know why they wanted to drink outside as the pub was just around the corner. Could have been the “poor student” in each of them trying to save money.

Not drinking was great of course. Cost me all of about 6 or 7 quid on a night out, and I could drive home too!

Aperture ƒ/5
Camera Canon EOS 20D
Focal length 48mm
ISO 400
Shutter speed 1/1000s

Hello! Brad and Angelina!

Hello! Brad and Angelina!

Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie on the cover of Hello! in the window of a hairdresser in Kinsale. That was some crazy amount of money to buy the rights to the first pictures of their twins, Knox and Vivienne. At least it’s going to charity, but as soon as Hello! published them the same shots were everywhere online.

I shot a lot of images in Ballycotton this afternoon with the Panasonic FZ5 compact camera. Didn’t really miss the Canon 20D at all, especially the weight of that camera. The FZ5 has a fairly ok macro capability and I got a few nice shots of knots in rope that I just could not do with my Canon mount lenses.

Aperture ƒ/5.6
Camera Canon EOS 20D
Focal length 18mm
ISO 100
Shutter speed 1/100s

Why does my Canon 20D keep clicking?

fuelling the passion for camogie

Bord Gais, fuelling the passion for Camogie in Cork. Or is it the wine? I couldn’t resist taking this shot this evening!

This is the second last photo I took with my Canon 20D before the shutter started clicking continuously. The last one is a slightly blurry shot of my family and inlaws in the pictured Wine Bar on Washington Street, Cork. I had just taken the shot, decided it was time to put the camera away and get Adam out of the buggy. I put the lens cap on, and click, click, click, click..
The clicks would only stop when I took the battery out. It appears from this thread that I’m not alone. I know that in the old days, cameras would last decades and “they don’t make them like they used to”, but I never expected the Canon 20D to break down on me in just 3 years. At a guess, I’ve probably shot 75,000 pictures with it so perhaps it was about time the shutter complained.

Anyway, I’m going to ring Canon in Dublin tomorrow for a repair quote. If it’s too expensive I’ll have to look into getting a replacement camera. Hope the house insurance will pay out in that case.

Aperture ƒ/7.1
Camera Canon EOS 20D
Focal length 28mm
ISO 100
Shutter speed 1/100s

Directions to Ballygarvan

Directions to Ballygarvan

Ballygarvan is 1 mile that way. Shot up by Cork Airport while trying to get a decent shot of a plane landing or taking off. I eventually moved to the other end of the air field where I got the shots I posted last week!

Aperture ƒ/8
Camera Canon EOS 20D
Focal length 125mm
ISO 100
Shutter speed 1/250s

Western Star Cork

Western Star Cork

The Western Star in Cork was a favourite haunt of UCC students for many a year but now it looks like it’ll be demolished! Looks like development has been on the cards for quite a while:

Permission was granted to Tom O’Riordan carry out development namely, permission for part demolition of existing public house and removal of existing timber outhouses, construction of 12 medical suites over 29 no. ground floor level car parking spaces and associated entrances, roadways and site works with vehicular access medical sites from the grounds of the Bon Secours Hospital at the Western Star, Western Road, Cork in accordance with plans and particulars submitted on 16/08/05; further information requested on 07/10/05; further information received on 04/04/06; clarification of F.I. requested on 26/04/06 and clarification of F.I. received on 31/05/06 Ref. T.P.05/30005

Aperture ƒ/8
Camera Canon EOS 20D
Focal length 18mm
ISO 100
Shutter speed 1/160s