Dandyism Incarnate

Archive for the 'Photography' Category

NSAS : Pulsars and Reflections

Tonight we held the first NSAS General Meeting for the year.

After the business part of the meeting, a dude from Swinburne University gave a talk on Pulsars…

After the meeting, I had a conversation with him in Polish. I wished him a merry Christmas and a Happy new year. Well… that’s all I know in Polish.

Meanwhile, the Society newsletter ‘Reflections’ has been published…

It includes a two page article which I wrote for the newsletter back in December. And on the back page are some of the photos from the Christmas party – including two pictures credited to Yuko… She always seems to be getting her photos published!

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More Moon

Although International Observe the Moon Night was several days ago, I observed the moon again tonight anyway.

This time it was because Yuko wanted to photograph the moon for her Haiku Blog. We went to a high field on the grounds of the college where we had a good view to the east, at the time the moon was due to rise. We actually tried this three days in a row but had been thwarted by cloud on the previous days.

But today, we got to see the moon rise over the horizon. It was very orange – like an orange…

Yuko used the picture above in here blog here.

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Yuko Gets a Student

A couple of days ago we went to Chatswood and, while there, Yuko went to a second-hand clothes shop. The shop owner saw Yuko’s camera and immediately employed her to teach her photography!

Today, we met the student – Lynette – at Epitome where Yuko gave her a lesson while I ate breakfast…

Photography Lesson in Progress

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Buying a Subaru

Going to a car dealer is like having an operation. You don’t like it but you have go there and let them rip your guts out to achieve the desired outcome.

That’s what we did today. To minimise the gut-ripping I took Yuko along to do any necessary haggling. She’s good at haggling.

So I left her in the office haggling with the dealer while I went and sat in the customers’ lounge which had a TV and refreshments. In fact it was 3pm and the TV was showing the media conference at which Windsor and Oakeshott were about to announce who would form government. I saw Windsor announce his support for Labor. Then, as Oakeshott started to speak, Yuko came back with the results of the haggling and I had to leave! So I missed it.

However, Yuko’s haggling proved adequate and I bought the car. It should arrive by the end of the month.

In the evening we went to Taiki to celebrate.

Recently Yuko had taken a bunch of photos of Taiki’s owners’ baby and given them a CD of the images. Tonight, the father (and sushi-chef) showed us one of the pictures which he has had framed…

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The ‘Captured’ Video

Here’s the video from last Thursday of Yuko NOT winning the Lane Cove ‘Captured’ Photography Competition…

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Moon (I)

A few weeks ago I bought a device for connecting my SLR camera to my telescope. Although I tried it on some terrestrial targets, I had not used it on the sky until now.

Today I decided to try shooting the Moon. I took my scope outside just before sunset and set it up next to the garage where there is a view of the western horizon…

The Equipment

The Moon was a thin crescent and was quite low making it not an ideal target. Venus was also visible a few degrees higher. I didn’t get any really good pictures, but it was a good test of the equipment. I was able to try various exposures and camera settings which gave me a good idea of the best settings to use next time.

Moon, Venus, Camera

This picture shows the Moon through trees when it was quite low. The sunlit part is over-exposed allowing the dark part lit by Earth-shine…

Moon

If the weather is favourable, I will try try to make some better images of the Moon as the crescent waxes over the next few days.

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Yuko Doesn’t Win Photo Competition

Tonight we attended the awards night for the Lane Cove ‘Captured’ Photography Competition. The theme this year was ‘One Village, One Earth’ – which we didn’t really understand. We took it to mean that entries should convey the co-existence of humans (the Village) and the natural environment (the Earth).

People milled about viewing the photos on display in the foyer of the council building. There appeared to be fewer entries this year…

People Milling

Yuko assesses the competition

There was free alcohol available for anyone who walked in off the street. We drank in moderation.

We had entered five pictures (the maximum allowed) each. But on the night, there is only one picture by each photographer on display. Yuko’s pictures were all of kookaburras, with some man-made stuff to represent the ‘Village’.

While there were a lot of very good photos, I didn’t think that many of them matched the theme very well.

Yuko’s picture (below) has the kookaburra (Earth) and a man-made structure (Village)…

However, Yuko’s success of last year was not repeated. At least I was able to repeat my failure of last year. The winners can be seen on the Council’s competition web site.

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New Camera

Yuko wanted me to take her to the Optus Shop at Chatswood so that she could hurl abuse at them for charging her $432 for one day’s Internet usage. She hurls abuse best when I’m not there, so I left her at the shop and went browsing.

I decided to go looking for a camera to replace my dead IXUS. I had a particular model in mind – the IXUS 300 HS. This model is so new that most shops don’t have it yet, but I found one on display at Ted’s Cameras.

I took this picture in the shop with the display model…

I bought a black one.

Then I went to meet Yuko and she told me she had succeeded in persuading Optus to refund half of the money! She achieved this by hurling a tirade of abuse at them and accusing them of operating a scam. I’m glad I wasn’t there.

We then went to Firefly, followed by Red Chopstick where I played with my new camera…

New Black Camera

Red Chopstick

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Camera Dead

The picture above is the last photo I will ever take with my trusty IXUS 850 IS. Later in the day, I noticed that the camera was dead – it would not turn on. I tried changing the battery and jiggling every control, but to no avail.

I bought this camera in April 2007 so I’m reasonably happy to get three years service out of it – given the heavy use it gets (I’ve dropped it on concrete several times). It has been held together with sticky tape for the last few months!

As it appeared to be completely dead, I decided to open it up and take a look at its guts. It was very dusty inside. I suspect that the looseness of the case (hence the sticky tape) contributed to dust getting inside…

For the rest of the day I had to resort to using my iPhone as a camera. However, the pictures above (of the IXUS) were taken with the Pentax SLR which I recently acquired from Yuko. The pictures below, taken at Firefly, are from the iPhone. The quality is actually not bad for a phone with such a tiny lens…

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Town House Inspection

In the morning, Yuko photographed a vine while I held an umbrella over her to keep her camera dry. It was very exciting work indeed…

We went to inspect a set town-houses which are now for sale at Lane Cove. They are newly built and located very close to the shopping centre.

They were quite nice inside and it is claimed that they have many ‘green’ features – solar panels, water recycling etc.

However we thought the asking prices were a tad high at $1.7M-$1.9M.

Townhouses at Lane Cove

In the afternoon while out walking I saw this bizarre sight – a signpost leaning over and swaying back and forth, its weight balanced by a heavy chain resting on the base…

Bizarro Signpost

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