kat's blog

Bright! (Theme Change)

I had to change the theme as it was seriously broken in IE7. I can't be bothered to try to fix it / sort it at the moment so I'll leave it on this one for a while. I'll think about updating it when I don't ahve loads of coursework to do and an exam to prepare for.

This theme is seriously bright though.....it just might be too bright...


I shot this panorma some time ago while on a business trip to Germany. I managed to get into Berlin one evening and subsequently took a lot of pictures of the architecture. I've put more effort in to this picture than it was really worth on the basis that I've learnt a lot while producing it. It was three images handheld at 18mm x 1.6 crop factor. There was some significant mismatching in the stones making up the foreground which I've repaired although if you look really carefully you might just be able to spot an oddity that I've left in! The image has also changed a lot since it started. I started off doing it in colour with a natural look (it was taken in the early evening so it was lightened a bit). I then started going with a bit more of a fantasy look with more of an overdone HDR look (although looking at some peoples HDRs you have to wonder whether there is a limit to how far you can push them into fantasy-land). The final image is obviously black and white and I'm personally more happy with it this way. Taking this image through a process of evolution has been interesting in making me more aware of what sort of look I like and given me lots of (not necessarily wanted) practice at masking!



A photo to honour the death of the 250ish spam comments I just deleted out of my approval queue and the IP address I have subsequently banned from the site. It's still trying to add stuff (you can tell by the number of guests online and the site slowing down every so often). You'd think they'd give up after a while but apparently not.

Mat's Graduation

Now that I've finally got my coursework out of the way I've had time to have a go at sorting out some of the photos that I took at my brother Mat's graduation on the 1st of September. The light was pretty harsh and trying to get my brothers to pose for photos in which they both look at the camera and smile at the same time is difficult but there are some reasonable ones. It was a good day out, we all got to be proud of the 'baby of the family' and the 'baby' seemed to enjoy himself. Now if I could just get both my brothers to smile!


If you're wondering why my computer for the first time in forever is not 'online' it's because my internet connection is down. I'm updatating this from my bro's computer in Reading who I'm visiting this weekend. I'd update from work with a placeholder message such as this but unfortunately my workplace classifies my site as 'unsuitable' for viewing and denies access to it with an error page that implies you've done something hideous like you've tried to look for warez or donkey porn ! This wouldn't bother me so much if this site was actually controversial. Then being denied access would be cool - like a badge of honour, rather than just an annoyance and slightly sad. Ciao for now...

Bristol Balloon Fiesta 2006

My parents bought me a flight in a balloon as a Christmas and Birthday present last year and Saturday was the day I was scheduled to fly. My mum had organised for me to take a flight during one of the launches at the Bristol Balloon Fiesta. After checking the weather reports on the Friday night it didn't seem likely that a Saturday morning launch would take place but given no cancellation message on the balloon company's weather check line I dutifully turned up to the launch meeting point at 05:30 on the Saturday.

Definition of Sheer Terror....

.....Cleaning the sensor of your camera in preparation for an amazing photo and life opportunity, accidently dropping a big blob of wet cleaning solution onto the sensor and watching it leave a big mark.

Examining the resultant photos from the camera and seeing a huge smear mark all along the longest edge of the picture.

Trying to clean it with a swab and seeing the circular type mark turn into a long smear.

Spending the next hour carefully erasing the mark using a 'speckgrabber', the tool that dumped the rogue cleaning solution from a crevice that hadn't emptied fully of solution after cleaning it.

Moral of the story: don't just check the Speckgrabber twice that it's dry before sticking it on the sensor - check a third time!

Irony of the story: the two dust specs that I was trying to clean off before 'the incident' are still present! After having my heart in my throat for so long - I think I can live with the cloning task on this weekend's photos.

Auburn 851 Speedster

I've finally started looking at some of the pictures that I took when I visited the British International Motor Show 2006. It took me a while to identify this car as in all the links that I clicked on the Beaulieu website I didn't manage to spot the obvious! I finally identified it by stumbing on an entry for a classic car aution in the states where one of the lots looked suspiciously like the car I was looking for. Still, nevermind, it got identified in the end. The two photos I took are below. The first - just a record of being there, the second - trying to be more arty! ;-)

Long Time No Update

Wow! It's been a while since I've updated due to spending long evenings at work doing coursework and generally not being in the mood to sort out any of the photos that I's recently taken. I thought I'd break the drought by uploading a couple of images of my friend Dave taken at Kimmerige Bay. I have lots of other ones still to sort but I generally choose images with friends in to work on first as they have the most meaning to me.

Annoying Light Bloom

This weekend it was inevitable that some sort of insect would become trapped inside the house and subsequently die what with the hot weather and the windows being open. Sure enough, the first dead fly appeared on Saturday and inspired me to try some super macro photography but this time I wanted to try a slightly different technique that that I used last time. This time I wanted to try to use the distance of the lens away from the camera sensor to provide the magnification. I had an old Pringles tin which I cut the end off to form a subsitute bellows, affixed one end to my lens-less camera with sticky tape and wedged my macro lens in the other. After setting up I noticed that I was getting an odd light bloom inside the image. I thoguht that maybe the light was bouncing around inside the tube as the inside was still silvered so I improvise a dark material to line the inside of the tube (it was a black bin liner) and tried again after wrapping another bin liner around the join between the tube and the camera to cut out any possible light leak through the rough join.

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