Tuesday, 25 March 2008

A trip to the botanic gardens...

I went looking for flowers and was met with a vast array of greenery. The thunderstorm last night washed off the dust and made everything a little brighter...

These images were all taken at the Melbourne Botanical Gardens.

The image of the boy was fun, he had run a little further away than he should have and his mother was calling with increasing frustration. The boy was calling back, "you must come to fern garden!" As I walked past him he was talking to himself, "you must come to the fern garden for it is my favourite!" I kid you not! :)


I recently attended a photoshoot with one of the RedBubble groups that I signed up for. I shot most of the images on film but I also took my digital camera and here is just one of the images. This young lady is very beautiful and will do well in the future I'm sure. It's taken me some time to work on this image because I forgot that I had taken digital images on the day...
One of the (shock horror) issues that I have at present is that I have a few too many choices when it comes to cameras and formats. So when I go out to take photos it's a dilemma as to which camera(s) to take. Hmmm, if only all of my issues were this pressing! :)
I'm off to the botanic gardens this afternoon to see what I can come up with - digital day today...
Has anyone else noticed that sometimes you can change fonts, sometimes you can adjust format, sometimes you can get spaces between paragraphs, sentences and thoughts and sometimes you just can't on blogger? Is it just me?

Tuesday, 18 March 2008

Colour or Monochrome...? That is the question...

My last assignment at photography school was the first of the truly "creative thinking processes" assignments. Up until now we were being taught everything we need to know about how cameras and lenses work, the more technical side of photography.

We had a lecture about composition and why we seem to like one image over another, the assignment was to bring in 8 images that we liked and to state briefly why we liked them. The second part of the assignment is that later in the year we have to try and duplicate 2 of those images...

6 of my 8 images were black and white... I started to see that the images that I liked the most were about contrast, light, shadow and texture, all of which don't necessarily require colour. The header image on this blog was taken in colour and, to me, looks so much better in black and white that I can't even find the colour version anymore (I'm sure I still have it, somewhere).

I used to go with Dad when he was doing the photofinish images for horse racing (I still have quite a few of his old negatives boxed up in storage) around home when I was a lot younger, the smell of the darkroom chemicals reminds me so very strongly of that, it is amazing.

One of my regrets today is that I never took the time to really learn how to do it myself. Partly because Dad was "at work" and had time restraints but I could have if I had wanted to at the time. I could fill a book with "if only's"!

I managed a promotion today so maybe, just maybe, I can work towards some darkroom stuff?

Saturday, 15 March 2008

It's here... It came with a title!

My Xaphoon turned up! Yay, ready to start playing beautiful music!

Well, it's a little harder than that!

The closest I have ever come to playing a reed instrument is when I've blown one of those party noisemakers. This is a sound I have been able to make with the Xaphoon along with various squeeks, squarks and varying pitched, ear splitting notes. I have managed to hit the correct notes a few times and even play parts of scales but then something just changes and it's back to squeeks and squarks. The video makes it look so easy!!!?

My respect for Saxophone, Clarinet, Oboe and all of the other woodwind players has gone up a few (more) notches.

Now my cheeks are sore, I may need to take a break and come back to it later (today)...

It didn't really come with a title but if it did I would henceforth and furthermore and somesuch like to be known as...

My Peculiar Aristocratic Title is:
His Most Noble Lord Malcolm the Eerie of Throcking in the Hole
Get your Peculiar Aristocratic Title

Sunday, 9 March 2008

Music... Trumpet versus Xaphoon!?

I've come to the conclusion that I need to find some creative outlets to try and develop my creative side.

One of my challenges is that I can be (Ok, I admit it, it's not that I can be it's that I am!) too technical/clinical/black & white and that isn't helping with my photography. I was discussing this the other day and I can see where some of that has come from.

When I was at High School I learned to play the piano, I got to grade six in both theory and practical and apparently that is a good thing... When I was 16/17 I just thought that it was a skill that I wasn't very good at. The problem, as I saw it at the time, was that it took so very long for me to learn each piece of music. None of it became intuitive, it wasn't fun it was an enjoyable chore (practice got me out of other chores!), it was a mathematical, calculated chore that I was able to do with planning and consistency but no fun and spontaneity. So I quit the piano and tried the trumpet for a few months but by then I had lost the musical desire.

So for the last few weeks I have been making enquiries about trumpets and imagine my joy on discovering that technology has made life easier!!! There is a thing called a silent mute that allows you to play a trumpet without disturbing others (much) and yet you can hear yourself in a headset... Bring it on! The costs at present are a little prohibitive (That's another of my challenges. Why buy the cheap one when you really want the good one?) and in reaserching trumpets I found what may be the ultimate, cool portable instrument, a Pocket Sax by Xaphoon.

Basically an ABS plastic or bamboo recorder (video clip) that uses a saxaphone reed rather than a whistle to produce sound. And it sounds like a cross between a saxophone and a clarinet. Sexy, cool and portable, did I mention cheap relative to a trumpet!

Saturday, 1 March 2008

What I seriously dislike (hate) about people...

1. They can't walk in a straight line.
2. They walk slower than me. (Seems that there are a lot of people who have nowhere to go and all day to get there!).
3. Combine 1 and 2 and I get frustrated with people who change directions with each step.
4. They step off at the lights 45 degrees from a strait line. This has a 50/50 chance of annoying me depending on which 45 degrees they choose.
5. They talk freely during the previews at the movies, and then continue in the quiet parts...
6. They answer the phone during the movies even if it was switched to silent.
7. Having answered the phone they exit their seat, walk up the aisle and stand at the exit. All of the time chatting to the caller.
8. Having almost finished the conversation they walk back into the cinema while saying goodbye to the caller.
9. They don't get it the first time and they answer a second, and third call...
10. Don't get me started about the groups that walk 4 abreast on the path and don't make room for me to walk past. Whether I am trying to get past from behind (a little less frustrating because they may not know I'm there remebering that I walk faster than them) or (unforgivable) they see me walking towards them and still don't make room for me...