Black and White Squares 6
25 Oct 2021 2:31PM
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This week our Sunday walk was through Milton village to Milton Country park.
I did not expect to be writing anything this week, as we had our granddaughter staying with us for the weekend. So, it was very much a case of snatching photos for this blog, as and when I could, in between pushing swings; saving fellow pedestrians from a five year old on a bike who thought she was in the Tour de France; and taking photographs for the the family album.
One problem I thought I might have, was switching my Panasonic TZ70 between the normal aperture priority, colour, four by three mode and ‘dynamic monochrome’ square image mode. In the event, this was not a problem – just a quick turn on the mode wheel did the trick.
What was more of a problem, was switching thinking. For instance, I routinely expose to the right as far as I dare. For this blog, using images straight out of the camera, exposure has to be balanced. Inattention to this, resulted in my first picture being far more high key than I would like. But to be fair, I would not have noticed this relief in the plaster, had I not been bending down to the granddaughter as it is only about three feet above the ground. The relief is on the exterior plaster work on the seventeenth century Queen Anne’s Lodge in Milton village.
This next image is a close up of the carving on a new wooden sculpture at the main entrance to the park. First impressions, are that the sculpture offers lots of opportunity for abstract close ups, which I will investigate on a less pressurised day.
If I was dissatisfied with the exposure of my first image, I was really happy with the tones in this third image of variegated ivy. I would have thought I had done well with this result if I had converted from a raw photograph.
Similarly, I have tried many times to photograph the dens which are now such a feature of our woodlands. They tend to be in various states of disrepair and always look interesting. But I have always found it difficult to get a good separation between the den and its background which is invariably cluttered. I think that that separation has been achieved rather well in this image, and as such it probably represents one of my best attempts at capturing this subject.
Finally, when I set out on Sunday, I thought that I could photograph some birds. Milton Country Park consists of disused gravel pits filled with water which support a fair population of birds. But the swans stayed resolutely in the middle of the pits, and buried their heads in the water. The ducks which normally come swimming up to investigate any ball I throw in for the dog to fetch, uncharacteristically scattered at the mere sight of the family pet. There was no sign of the herons, grebes and kingfishers. So, I tried taking pictures of gulls in flight. This was about the best.
The TZ70 is not the fastest camera for focusing, and by the time the AF had locked in, the bird had long since gone. I am amazed that the bird is as sharp as it is, but the camera probably focused on the clouds, which were a sufficient distance away to give the required depth of field.