Walking into Town

Trees in the Park, Horsham Park – April 2021
Trees, Horsham Park, West Sussex – April 2021

For health reasons, I am trying to make sure I take a solid walk every day. I recently found myself testing a new (to me) camera, so I thought I would combine the activities and see what came out of it.

The camera is an Olympus E-450, which I believe is about 10 years old, so I was curious to see what my photographs would look like.

Tree in the Park, Horsham Park, Horsham – April 2021

Before I even took any photographs, I was pleased with the size and weight of the camera, which even with the kit zoom (14-42mm), easily slipped into my shoulder bag and was barely noticeable as I walked along country footpaths and climbed over stiles.

Calves in a Field, Horsham, West Sussex – April 2021

Back home again, looking at the files, I’m really pleased with the colours the camera produced. The greens look good (I hate it when they go neon). and the cows and flowers look – about right. It reminds me, that a good camera 10 years ago – is still probably a good camera.

Origami Cranes, My Desk

Origami Crane, My Desk Marh 2021

Just a short post. Is there something which you’ve always wanted to learn, which you have never got around to?

Three Paper Cranes, My Desk March 2021

My list is quite long, countless languages, limitless skills and I have always wanted to be able to make paper cranes. For years and years. Perhaps inspired by “Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes”. So I looked it up online – and I made some paper cranes! One item off the list!

Fisheye in the Park, West Sussex

Tree in the Park, August 2020

It has been a bleak spring day today, with driving wind and rain. So I thought I would post something from last summer instead.

I go through phases with photography, sometimes for months I will just use digital cameras – and then I will change over and just use film cameras for a while. In August, I was mostly using film. On this occasion, I was running a roll of film through a Lomo Fisheye2 camera. People talk about cameras being light-tight boxes – and this really is one, with a fixed 1/100 th speed shutter and a fisheye lens on the front. Unfortunately, I managed some how to use the roll of film twice, so lots of my images were double exposures! But this one isn’t. And I quite like it. If you look at the film, you can see the rectangle of film and then the circle of the image in the middle of it. I can’t decide if the strange colours at the side of the frame are because of exposure or because of the plastic fantastic lens.

To look at the camera, you might wonder if it was intended for underwater work, with its translucent lens cap and strange styling – but it isn’t!

I think I will try again with another roll of film – I think it would be fun to go to the beach and take pictures in the waves (obviously keeping the camera dry). Beacause of the fixed exposure 1/100th of a second, I would suggest sticking with 400ISO film – I really like Kodak Ultramax.

Cows in Field, West Sussex

Cows, Horsham, West Sussex August 2020

This is from last summer. I know I have titled this cows – but I have a feeling these are really bullocks. On the farmland near where I live there is always a fairly continuous turnover of livestock.

Sheep, Horsham, West Sussex January 2021

And as you can see here, the field now contains sheep. As subjects, they are quite different when I approach the hedge: the cows (or bullocks) tend to walk over to stare at me, while the sheep usually to run away. Sometimes, if I use my patented stalking method (stand very still), the sheep drift back. But they are aways watching me very closely.

Pheasant, West Sussex

Common Pheasant, Horsham, West Sussex January 2021

Walking in the rain isn’t much fun. More recently, there has been a fair amount of it on my daily walks and this morning, I almost left my camera on its hook (making one less thing to dry out afterwards). But I didn’t. And, as you can see, when I saw this bird as I walked into the park- I’m glad I didn’t.

I’m sure I’ve written before about the wildlife which wanders into the park from the neighbouring farmland. I occasionally see deer, buzzards and on this occasion a common pheasant. I have essentially no fieldcraft skills beyond moving slowly and creeping closer. Although the bird was perhaps 5 metres away, with my lens at 70mm, it was hard to show real detail. But, I suppose there is a lot of that in photography, where unless you are specifically equiped for a particular subject, you are always going to be having to work hard to catch anything.

Morning Frost, West Sussex

Trees, Horsham, West Sussex January 2020

Christmas isn’t the coldest time of the year in the UK. In December, we can usually relax because the coldest months for us are January and February, So, after a relativly wet Christmas, the weather has turned increasingly colder and finally we having really hard frosts – as you can see in these photographs.

Frost on Tree, Horsham, West Sussex January 2020

This year, I forget to buy a calendar and to make any New Year’s resolutions. Is it too late? What should they be? I like taking photographs – as you can see. Should it be to do with that? During lockdown I wrote a novel (I think there will be glut of novels when this is over) – struggling with editing at the moment. Should they be to do with that?

What do you want to do in the New Year?

Frozen Cobweb, Horsham, West Sussex January 2020

Morning Frost, West Sussex

Frost, Horsham, West Sussex December 2020

Right now, like many people in the UK, I’m living in lockdown again!

I think I’ve written it before, but one of the things I have appreciated this year, has been the opportunity to notice the passing seasons. I particularly remember the change from spring into early summer, and now, with the hard frost this morning, I’ve noticed we are in the hard part of winter. The picture is of ice which formed on my car overnight – I have taken pictures of this before, because I love the patterns the ice makes.

There is a weather forcast for snow tomorrow – have to see how that goes!

Tree, Horsham Park

Tree, Horsham Park, West Sussex October 2020

I may have posted pictures of this tree before – perhaps in a different season.

As I recollect it, I was sitting on a bench, when I thought the tree reminded me of a still life or perhaps a Chinese landscape painting. So I took a picture.

Evening Sky, Horsham

Evening Sky, Horsham, West Sussex August 2020

Time passes. This photo is from a test roll I did on a (new to me) camera. I think it was mid-evening when I took it and as you can see, the Sun is setting. As I’m writing this, it is a similar time of day – but it is completely dark outside (and has been for a couple of hours). I am almost 50 years old, I know the science, but the seasons still amaze me.

I love the delicate range of colours and the whispy white clouds. So it is a “shapes” photo rather than a “things” photo.

I remember as I was walking around the park, I was thinking, that if we could get everything back to normal by the end of the year – then all the inconvienience would have been worth it. But – things aren’t back to normal!

Trees in Fog, West Sussex

Trees in Fog, Horsham, West Sussex November 2020

I think I have walked around the park every day since the first lockdown. Normally, in the noise of work and rush, the seasons tend to pass outside the window, but because we have all been at home I have been able to notice the changes in the weather as the seasons pass.

As you can see, we have had a patch of foggy weather, which makes me think we are transitioning into winter. I’m trying to think of a good poem to quote which would describe the feeling of walking through a foggy landscape. Any ideas?

Anyway, to come back to the original thought – it is gently pleasing to see the seasons pass – notice the days get longer and then get shorter again. I used to hate getting up to go to work in the dark and then returning home in darkness. But it did mean that I got to see sunrise, which always feels special, particularly in spring, when the light seems golden on the morning frost.