I'm about to open the door on a new chapter in blog land as I try to overcome the difficulties that I have faced in recent times with my photographic naivety on the internet and juggling 4 or 5 issues in reality that seem to have conflicting interests. I step back on board with a new photo library, a new hard drive on the computer with a few experimental ideas. A comment from someone who doesn't follow me said "If I can do it, any one can". I would like to repeat that everyone seems to have a system that works for them and "it's only easy if you know how"! I tried the 30 day photoshop elements program trial but the watermark didn't work for me as cropped images produced ridiculous outsize results and the whole program didn't work well as it produced a "corrupted file" that didn't correspond with anything that I was being told on the forum pages.
Surprisingly on a different note, with little blog activity since I last posted on 14th February (3 and 1/2 months), I can't quite believe the average of 2400 page views a month in previous blog posts.
In this post, apart from two different kinds of experimentation that has given me an occasional idea, I want to give you a brief insight into what I've been up to in recent months. I will in due course publish a post on about 75% of the photographic content.
Without giving too much away, there is great meaning behind the dull images and the small amount of colour depicted here.
The opening image was the main focus of a countryside winter road walk to the Feathers in Northumberland. This was the second of two walks that I did with one of the associate walking groups of the Scarborough sand castle manager !! The food was unbelievably good cooked from local food sources.
My Scarborough Sandcastle manager is a man with fingers in many "figurative pies" and he has been attempting to start up a social group that meets once a month in a trendy cafe style venue with meals and other social activities to be added as the group becomes larger. I was asked to take some photos of the ... err ... red hot venue !! for some future advertising.
The sports season ticket that I possess is for the Newcastle Eagles basketball team who play at home on most friday nights from September to April. Although British Basketball is not comparable in standard to teams in the USA or some parts of Europe, my team has done rather well last season. One can't ask any more from a team to play for Four trophies and win them all, a feat that has only been achieved twice before in British Basketball history, once by the then Chester Jets and another occasion for the Newcastle Eagles. As many of you know I'm not a portrait or people photographer, but I was allowed on court afterwards alongside members of the press to capture the moment.... maybe I looked like one of them :-) The image above is a post match BBL trophy win press interview with the inspirational player / coach Fab Flourney on the left and high scoring Charles Smith on the right.
In February I had the opportunity to travel to Lisbon with seven friends from Yorkshire to see some amazing sights. As you can see not everyone was enthralled by the scenery but I have to say that Lisbon requires the most comfortable shoes as it can be a weary experience walking constantly on small, beautiful but tiring street tiles !!
A trip that I had planned for some time was a charity trip to South Africa at Easter time. This was an amazing experience with Willing Hands to see first hand how money was being spent on HIV and Orphanage projects. I found it was warm enough not to require the services of a hat !!
I've spent a lot of time playing in the church band of late and this particular occasion I had the view from my seat at a wedding during February. This image reminds me that I should be updating my equipment.
Since the Lisbon trip, I have been spending a lot more time on the A1 and M1 motorway visiting Sheffield, albeit at most awkward times of the day and night a lot more frequently in recent months.
I have been familiarising myself with some of the surrounding countryside. The classic postcard view of Bakewell from the opposite side of the bridge is no longer possible thanks the the overgrown tree in the centre, so I thought I'd draw attention to how the size of a tree should be at such an important viewpoint !!
The health of my Mother is stable with progress of two steps forward and then when I am least expecting ... two steps back. In the rotation of saturday life, we go for a drive in the car to a local town for a day of interesting shopping, eating and general sightseeing. One such place is the Northumberland town of Morpeth. It is unfortunate that my favourite shop (Appleby's bookshop) is closing down because of the loss of business due to the unending roadworks a little too close to home for them. I cannot begin to tell you how many budget travel books I have bought from this shop in the past. Most of them at the moment are for reference only but some of them in my collection are still sitting there waiting to be .... "read" !!
Lastly an image from a Bakers shop window in a suburb of Sheffield. As it is Jubilee weekend with Queen Elizabeth (Long live the Queen !) being on the throne for 60 years that warrants an exception to the rule of this post and allowing a second colour here ;-) ... small steps. Hope those of you who are celebrating the event enjoy the weekend. I'm off to Sheffield on monday night for a garden party where 40 people are attending. Here's hoping that the only thing that is not british about the event is the weather !!