Poor old Clyde

clyde radcliffe exterminates all the unfriendly repulsive earth ridden slime

Poor Clyde. At one time he exterminated all the unfriendly repulsive earth ridden slime in the 1990 Thalamus game Creatures on the C64, Amiga and Atari ST, but now look at him. He’s missing his feet, his eyes are starting to go brown with age and he’s looking the worse for wear. No wonder, he’s almost 20 years old. For years he sat on top of my monitor. His feet stuck to the beige surface, but alas they were amputated when I moved out and between this and that he never got them back.
If you’ve never played Creatures, then find a C64 emulator (Vice is a good one), and look for the game. It’s easy to find as it sold bucket loads when originally released. The Roland Brothers did a great job of coding this masterpiece. Here’s the original Zzap! 64 review of the game. Brings back plenty of fond memories!

All this leads me to today’s post. I cleaned up my office with the help of my wife. I can see the floor now. There are no magazines lying around. Adam had great fun messing with some of my lens covers and bits and pieces while we cleaned. To my surprise I found the Autofocus On/Off switch from my Sigma 10-20 lens. There it is! I had no idea it was in my office. I was convinced I had lost it while out walking! Also pictured is the cover of the Canon 50mm f1.8 lens I used to take this shot.

In the background is this month’s issue of Retro Gamer. There’s a special on Zelda, a game I’ve never played except for 5 minutes on Starlight Princess on the Wii. Apparently the series is quite famous and well liked.

Aperture ƒ/4
Camera Canon EOS 20D
Focal length 50mm
ISO 100
Shutter speed 1/60s

How to short circuit

Ever since I posted Short Circuit I’ve been meaning to post a small tutorial on how I did it. There were so many comments from people clamouring to know the secret of how I made traces of light dance around the picture frame.

Actually, nobody asked. Will was kind enough to suggest another title but otherwise it went unremarked. *sob* I’m going to tell you anyway.

The image is a long exposure shot, of at least 1 second and preferably 4 or 5 seconds. I simply stood in front of a construction site at night, lifted the camera, hit the shutter and rotated the camera around in my hands. Needless to say, I did not have the strap around my neck or I would have done myself damage!
At first I tried Aperture Priority mode, setting the aperture really small (big numbers, around F/22), but then I decided to do the obvious, and used Shutter Priority and simply set the speed(time) I wanted. Below are a few shots from that night, including the scene as it was on the night and some experimental shots as I practiced. The technique is really easy, but can create some really interesting and eye catching photos.


Aperture ƒ/3.5
Camera Canon EOS 20D
Focal length 10mm
ISO 800
Shutter speed 1/10s

Crosshaven Boats

Crosshaven Boats

In mid February we went down to Crosshaven and I took Adam and Oscar for a walk down the road past the boat yards. It was way too cold and windy though so I didn’t go too far. On the way back I looked up and this just jumped out at me!

Love how this came out.

Aperture ƒ/8
Camera Canon EOS 20D
Focal length 10mm
ISO 100
Shutter speed 1/200s

Doneraile Photowalk on June 8th

The month of June is going to be a busy and exciting one as the Midsummer Festival will be in full swing! To avoid clashes with any other event I think it’s better if the photowalk in Doneraile, Co. Cork be on Sunday June 8th before it starts at all.

Where: Doneraile Park, Co. Cork.
When: Sunday, 8th June. 3pm
Directions: Leave Cork going north through Blackpool towards Blarney and Mallow. Pass through Mallow and keep on the main road until you get to “New Twopothouse”. Doneraile town is sign posted there so take a right. When you get to the town go through it to the other side. You’ll see Doneraile Park sign posted. See the Google Map above, or check this one for the route.

Doneraile Park is a beautiful park with at least one river running through it, a small weir near the carpark. Deer and livestock can often be seen in some areas of the park as can fowl like ducks or swans. Doneraile House overlooks a large part of the park and is famous because a member of that household was the only female Freemason. The house was closed the last time I was there and I’m not sure if it’s ever open to the public. It faces north from what I can remember so you’d have to be there before noon to catch any sun on the front of the house.

If you’re going to blog about this, or post photos afterwards, please tag them “corkphotowalk” so anyone interested can find them easily!

More:

Cork Midsummer Festival

If you can’t make it to Doneraile on the 8th, there’s still plenty happening in the weeks after as the festival starts on the 15th and continues for 3 weeks. I’m particularly interested in the following, mainly because they’re outdoors, and as they are in public places, photography won’t be a problem.

  • Sunday, June 15th from noon to 6pm. The Lord Mayor’s picnic in the park. Fun and games and food stalls in Fitzgerald’s Park, Cork. I was there a few years ago. Lots to see, plenty to photograph, although we’ll have to be considerate of children.
  • Saturday, June 21st. Shandon Street Festival. Music and entertainment on the street all day. At 1pm in front of Brown Thomas there will be a Bicycle Ballet. It lasts 30 minutes. Must try catch both.
  • Saturday and Sunday, June 28th to 29th. Senszione. Sounds like a weird fairground with unusual looking rides. Unfortunately it’s at 6.30pm, 7.45pm and 9pm. Both earlier times are bad for me, but I’ll try for 9pm. Bad light then of course but it can’t be helped.
  • Saturday, July 5th. Robodock. IAWS Warehouse, Cork Docklands at 3pm and 8pm. I’ll be going to the 3pm show. Remember those weird iron sculptures in Emmett Place on St. Patrick’s Day? Lots more of them. The Docklands is due to be developed so it’s worth getting down there if for no other reason than to record something that won’t be able to happen there again.

I almost forgot. The Cork City Marathon is on Monday, June 2nd. Grab your place at the finish line!

Phew. It’s going to be a busy month!

The faraway hills of Arizona

The faraway hills of Arizona

When I’d look out on the desert landscape and watch the sun soak away as night fell I was always reminded of Terry Pratchett’s description of sunrise on Discworld where the sunlight slowly filled in all the dark parts of the landscape.

Aperture ƒ/6.3
Camera Canon EOS 20D
Focal length 200mm
ISO 100
Shutter speed 1/100s

The old boat at Mizen Head

The old boat at Mizen Head

Next time you’re out at Mizen Head you might notice this abandoned boat lying upside down by the visitor center. I almost missed it but I looked back to get a shot of the cliffs in the background. This makes a nice foreground I think.

Anyway, must have been an awful chore dragging that boat all the way up from the water. It was tiring enough pushing a buggy (and later carrying my bored baby) up from the bridge connecting the lighthouse to the mainland.

It’s a beautiful location. If you’re in West Cork be sure to visit!

Aperture ƒ/8
Camera Canon EOS 20D
Focal length 10mm
ISO 100
Shutter speed 1/200s