Symonds Yat

Symonds Yat
Symonds Yat, Herefordshire, from the River Wye

Monday, 28 January 2019

Garden Birds

This Robin has become a regular visitor to our garden
this year. We have seen the occasional Robin in previous
years but just lately this one has popped in every day.

f/5.6 --- 1/3200 sec --- ISO 500 --- 400mm
Well, just as I suspected, I haven't had the time to blog that I would have liked to have had. Well, never mind. I did say it was going to be occasional.

Anyway, here are a couple of shots that I took of birds in my garden the other day. They suffer from too-high ISO and the fact that I was shooting through a window, but other than that they're not too bad.

Enjoy! 
 
 

Blue Tits are among our most regular
garden visitors. We see dozens every day.
They're starting to nest now so it will
soon be time to chop up those peanuts.

f/5.6 --- 1/1600 sec --- ISO 500 --- 222mm

 
 
 

Wednesday, 16 January 2019

A Summer's Afternoon in a Garden

An old Victorian laundry wringer, now discarded and being overgrown in a corner.
f/3.5 --- 1/800 sec --- ISO 100 --- 24mm

I had a lot of fun taking these pictures. It was really my first attempt at "crawling around a flower garden."
I'm not as agile as I'd like to be and lumping a big heavy camera around didn't make for an easy shoot.
But the day was warm and there was no time pressure -  for a change.
I was going to say that I quite like dereliction, but that wouldn't be true. To be honest, for the most part, it's an eyesore. But photographically, it can provide some very interesting subjects.
This wringer for example.
It has been gently rotting away, broken and unloved, probably for decades. But just there, at that moment, in that position with the bindweed growing through it, I thought it was just lovely and I couldn't resist shooting it from every conceivable angle.
This was the final result and I have used it many times, both as it is and in monochrome.

Cabbage White on a Purple Flower
f/4 --- 1/1000 sec --- ISO 100 --- 70mm









Ah, the Cabbage White Butterfly.
Bane of kitchen gardeners everywhere. The hours I have spent trying to protect my brassicas from these little devils!
But actually, when you get up close, and you haven't got any cabbages to worry about, they are actually quite beautiful.
I don't have any dedicated macro lenses, so I couldn't follow my ethos of getting up close and personal with my subject. Apart from anything else, every time I pointed my camera at one of these insects, it flew away.
I don't mind admitting that I was getting pretty fed up with almost capturing one. So when this one managed to stay still for a whole five seconds, I didn't waste a moment.
The shot didn't look like much on the camera's little screen, but I hope you'll agree, the full-size result was very pleasing.




Eryngium Bee Magnet
f/6.3 --- 1/640 sec --- ISO 100 --- 70mm

I have discovered that using a decent telephoto lens can produce results that are very close to what you might achieve with macro.
The "middle" lens of my three USM II lenses is 24-70mm, so it is, technically, a telephoto or zoom. But the maximum focal length is relatively short so I still had to get in reasonably close. Which could have been a problem around bees.
On this particular afternoon, the Eryngium were in full flower, and the bees could not have been less interested in me if they had tried. Which is just as well as I am seriously allergic to pain and I didn't fancy getting stung.
There are beehives in the corner of this particular garden and so the flowers were, quite literally crawling with the little chaps.
I have, perhaps, still a way to go with insect photography but I was pleased with the contrast between foreground and background in this shot.






Pollen Collection
f/7.1 --- 1/400 sec --- ISO 100 --- 70mm








This was taken on a different day, and in a different place, but I have included it because, to date, it is probably the best shot of an insect that I have taken. I think I would have liked it to have been facing towards me but, well, he wasn't taking direction at that particular moment!


Sunday, 13 January 2019

Also Ran

I just got placed 1013th in a photo competition out of 1456 entries.
It's a bit like being picked last for the team - something of which I have vast experience.
Oh well. Never mind. My wife has quite rightly pointed out that it wasn't last -  there were 443 behind me!
This is the image. Judge for yourselves.


Misty Rooflines. A view from Bedfords Park over the
London Boroughs of Havering and of Barking and Dagenham.

Original Image: F/5.6 --- 1/2000 sec --- 185mm

Friday, 11 January 2019

Greetings!





A rare photo of me smiling (it's not wind).
Well, I'm holding a camera, so I would be, wouldn't I?

Hello.
Welcome to my BKB Images blog.


I'm Brian and this is me. Not much to look at am I? Which is why I prefer to be shooting pictures rather than starring in them.

I guess it's fair to say that I am probably at my very happiest and most content when I am left to my own devices to potter about behind a camera, recording my view of the world.

I regard myself as a work-in-progress. In photography terms, that is. I reckon it's probably too late to make any other changes!

I'm no expert but I have learned one or two tricks along the way. And I am developing a Photographer's Eye, which is not a mid-forehead appendage, but a way of finding an interest in details and subjects which maybe others would pass by without a second glance.

The purpose of this blog is to display some of my images and talk about them. I'm not here to lecture or show how clever I am (because really, I'm not) but I may occasionally talk about something on the technical side that I have learned.

There are far better and more successful photographers in the world. But I have come a long way since I took it up seriously and I hope that you both enjoy the images I share and that you want to comment upon them.

You can see many more of my contributions on Flikr, Instagram and Facebook. Just look for BKB Images.