New work in my Etsy shop

I’ve added some new pictures to my Etsy shop. This is part of the on-going work to move all my on-line sales to Etsy, which has better payment and ordering options. Anyway, if you fancy taking a look, here it is.

It’s surprising how much work it takes to do this. Nine new pictures have taken me most of the afternoon. One of the hardest parts is writing the descriptions. This means getting the maps out, tracking my position and what’s in the frame, what the hill tops are, what the valley features are, etc. Worth it though, I’ve been told that this detail is part of what makes my Etsy shop interesting.

I also have to make the framed shot for each picture. For each one I have the full size shot, plus a shot of the print inside a frame. I cheat to do this. I took a picture of an empty frame, then I composite the actual image into the empty frame. The end result is indistinguishable from reality except for the lack of the signature and title in the mount border.

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A tender embrace

In response to the Daily Post challenge A Good Match

This is a one-off shot, taken at home on the coffee table. It was one of those days where you get the camera out and just point it at things to see what you can see. I liked the way these forks seemed to clasp each other so tenderly. It’s always worth keeping half an eye open for odd shots, sometimes you can make really good work in unexpected situations.

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Evaluating your own photographs

After a day’s shooting, after editing out the no-hopers and mediocre shots, I used to evaluate the long-list by printing and hanging them around the house. This works pretty well and I recommend it but it’s expensive (in time, money and house space) and I haven’t done it for a while. It’s been said that photographers (and artists in general) are the worst judges of their own work. I don’t agree with all of the sentiment behind this but it can be difficult sometimes to work out which pictures really work.

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This shot may now be included in my sales stock after looking at it as part of a book layout.

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Something from nothing

In response to the WordPress Daily Post challenge Shadow

I like the way the low sun comes in through the window sometimes and makes strong, long shadows. Ordinary things suddenly have interest because of the shadow shapes they make. This fork turns into a scythe in shadow. I like the way the real and the shadow touch so delicately at the point of the tines and the shadow then curves back so elegantly.

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OMD EM10 RIP ?

My Olympus is broken. I’ve had it for about two and a half years from new, bought with the kit lens. It’s had a couple of breakages before this – the battery compartment cover didn’t last long at all and some time last year the manual focus ring just disintegrated.

This time, there are a variety of symptoms of misbehaviour – no image on screen or EVF, lens hunting through the zoom range without me asking it to, won’t focus, won’t take a shot, etc. All intermittent, but it just won’t work. I think it might be the lens. I’m going to go to a shop and try it with another lens. If so, that’s not a long life-span for a lens. It’s the M.Zuiko 14-42 pancake zoom. A very nice lens image-wise, and very small and light, and cheap as a kit lens (not cheap to buy on it’s own though). However, not the most solidly built piece of kit. I’ll see if I can get another on ebay, assuming that’s the cause. I hope so, because I’d be really disappointed if the body has given up after such a short time.

The best view in Wales?

In response to the WordPress Daily Post challenge Solitude

…in which we discuss how you can find one of the best views in Snowdonia with a minimum of muscle power and far from the usual madding crowd.

I went on a photo trip to Snowdonia yesterday. I’d met a man on top of a welsh hill on sunday and we were chatting about the distant views to the Snowdonia mountains and the amount of snow we could see. The chat wandered, as it does, and he told me about the Moel Siabod cafe, in Capel Curig. That was enough to give me my starting point for the day. From there I wasn’t sure but once out of the cafe my feet wandered into the wild lands behind. This path will take you over to Trefriw and Llanrwst and the Conwy valley if you let it but I didn’t wander far. I started to tramp through the pathless heather and scramble up the many rocky knolls and hills that I knew would have good views up and down the valley. I wasn’t disappointed, these views must rank among the finest in Wales and with a very modest outlay of effort._igp8765 Continue reading