A Stone’s Throw


Scrap trailer in a farm yard

The last four weeks or so have seen a small photography project come together. Using the tintype setting on the Hipstamatic app, the project started as a couple of test images and grew larger, with aspect becoming clear after a revelatory walk through a location barely a mile from where i live. It was a wood, with a public footpath, that I’d never seen before.

We rarely explore around where we live. We become so complacent about our surroundings choosing to explore areas further afield. Many undiscovered ‘lands’ remain within a stone’s throw of our front door and yet we often choose to remain comfortable with the familiar. We can visit another day is often the excuse and that ‘another day’ rarely, if ever, arrives.

The Hipstamatic tintype setting was something I’d wanted to have a go with for ages. When it first came out it used to crash the app every time, however,  no problems now. The tintype has its own quirks with highlights and exposures in very bright light proving to be especially challenging. Several shots didn’t come out well due to the light intensity and a small number of shots needed tidying up in Photoshop – bright highlighted areas produced multi-coloured pixelated areas. The narrow focus area of the photos also takes some getting used to, but gradually you start compensating for it when composing images. I did rather enjoy the fact that you never did quite know how the image would turn out.

Around thirty images from the ‘A Stone’s Throw ‘project can be found in the gallery at :-


A few extra shots are included in the ‘A Stone’s Throw’ Flickr album HERE

The Strong Man Lamp


If there was ever an addiction for the British public, it would be the car boot sale. People go mad for them, search them out, hunt for them. Buyers and sellers.

Maybe that’s the appeal; the car boot offers a modern day thrill of the hunt. Are you looking for a strong man lamp… then it’s your lucky day! Among the junk there is treasure.

It’s true too. I managed at one sale to pick up Don McCullin’s 1979 book ‘Homecoming’ for a pound. Bargain!

The Going Year


I’ve never been much for celebrating the New Year coming in. I think it stems from my parents quiet ambivalence to all the New Year partying. Look back at the old year, take the lessons from it and move onto the new, seems to be as good an option as any.

The photo, by the way, isn’t my ‘best photo of 2013’ as so many photographers seem to do but i suppose it could be seen as a slight reference to the end of the year as we all paddle our kayaks towards the unknown waters on the horizon. Ahem… deep. 🙂

The weather in Uig, Skye that day was miserable with rain and a ferocious wind battering this group of kayaking rookies who were taking instruction. Only the guy in the lead boat seemed to be comfortable in the constant rough swell of the waves. The others had a rather stiffer technique which seemed to be a combination of intense concentration mixed with mild terror. You couldn’t help but admire them as they battled the elements.

My big find of 2013 was chess. I used to play many years ago and after buying a set up in Skye, i found that my passion for the game came back. Professional photography can be quite a intense business at times and i find that chess provides a welcome escape away from the thought processes of work. Photography can become all-consuming if you let it.

So finally I’d like to finish this final post of 203 with a thank you to everyone who follow the blog or reads the posts. It is very much appreciated. Next year i will try and post more regularly. I certainly want to try and use Pressgram more than i have.

Have a happy, peaceful and prosperous 2014.

Stalking Seagull


This guy was lucky that the wooden pallet was there to stop this aggressive bird from taking his fish. The bird made several attempts to get at the food but each time backed off at the last minute, uncertain of how he would escape if he did get the food. All the time he was doing this, the poor tourist guy was keeping a watchful eye on his hungry stalker.

Aggressive seagulls come from people feeding them. The most aggressive I’ve ever come across were at Conwy, Wales back in 2003. where waves of brash, delinquent seagulls would literally mob you and try and snatch the food out of your hand using fly-by attacks.

It was annoying and also quite scary as the birds were quite big – probably from being so well fed. The easiest thing was to wrap up the food and dash for the car making you feel like you were in a scene from Alfred Hitchcock’s classic film ‘The Bird’s’.

More images from last month’s trip to Scotland can be found HERE