Garden Insects

Over the last few weeks it’s become a bit of a habit to go into the garden at some point in the day with my camera to see if I can get any pictures of the insects and spiders which crawl and fly around the plants. Although neither my wife Janice or I are naturally gifted gardeners, we have been steadily improving the condition of the garden and introducing more plants and flowers  in order to encourage more insects and […]

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London Zoo – 35mm slides from 1980 (part 2)

This is a follow up to the post of a couple of weeks ago with some more pictures taken c1980 with either a Petri MF-1 or an Olympus OM-20 camera. Having sorted through some more of my Dad’s old box of slides I found a further two sets of colour slide films which I took during a visit to London zoo. These were all duplicated with a slide duplicator rather than scanned and I think they are better as a result. […]

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Macro photography – Small golden dragonfly

Dragonflies have alway been a problem for me to photograph, so I am particularly pleased that I managed to get quite close to a small golden dragonfly today when I had my specialist macro lens fitted to my Sony Nex 6. I’m not sure of the species, but I found this dragonfly sitting on the end of a stick which was acting as a stake for a small tree. Normally if I find a dragonfly sitting anywhere it will be […]

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Takumar 135mm f/3.5 on Nex

This is a review of my Takumar 135mm f/3.5 M42 mount lens on my Sony Nex 6 camera. Description This lens is an M42 mount lens made in about  1973. It has an aperture range of f/3.5 to f/22 and a closest focusing distance of about 1.5 meters, or 5 feet. The aperture ring is controlled by a small pin protruding from the bottom of the mount, and there is an Auto/Manual switch fitted to disable the pin and make the […]

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Macro photographs with my Nex 6

This morning I took my customary walk around the field near our house to see what insects I could find before the Sun warmed them to the point where I wouldn’t be able to catch them. I found quite a variety of insects as I walked around – butterflies, ladybirds and flies, and I also managed to get some pictures of the red mayflies which were darting about the pond in the corner of a children’s playground in Knebworth. I’ve […]

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I wish I had my macro lens today

We have been away for a couple of days visiting my Sister in Norwich. I assumed that since she lives in a city the last thing I would need would be my macro kit so I only took my standard ‘takumar kit‘ with me. Unfortunately it turned out I was wrong as we went for a walk into the woods by her house and discovered there is a nature park next to the woods and a whole collection of small […]

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Macro Photography – Grasshopper

I found this little grasshopper in a wooded area of Stevenage called Prior’s Wood yesterday. I could hear the grasshoppers all around as I walked about looking for butterflies. Unfortunately the butterfly population this year seems to be severely depleted, with only a few Marbled White, small Skippers and the common Tortoiseshell, Comma etc about. A couple of years ago I went to the same area and you could almost guarantee some great pictures just by pointing your camera at […]

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Snowdrops and Daffodils

I saw some snowdrops growing in a local patch of grassland a few days ago and took a quick snap on my mobile phone, but resolved to go back another day with my ‘real’ camera. Well, this morning James & I went back and I took some more pictures & used the opportunity to try out the Metz 58 af2 flash gun I got at Christmas as a fill in flash. I have not used a flash much before, and […]

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Close up Photography – Natural Patterns

Flowers are great subjects for pictures, especially if you can get close enough to see the flower properly. I found this flower in Knebworth and I was immediately drawn to the brilliant symmetrical patterns it displayed. I don’t know what the actual botanical name of the plant is but it’s a fantastic example of the way nature throws up patterns. Pentax K-5 Tamron 90mm f/2.8 1/250 sec f/11 iso1600

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The lucky moment

There are some pictures which are planned and there are some which are pure luck. This picture was a mixture of both. We were on holiday in CenterParcs at Elvden Forest in February 2012 and we went to one of the lakes to have a walk round the shore. I saw that this presented an opportunity for some nature pictures so I fitted my Tamron 70-300 mm telezoom to my Pentax K-r and we started to walk. There is an […]

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Family Pictures – Pergola

This is another picture that I took on a Family Visit to Knebworth House. Jan and the children had been walking through the pergola towards the Maze and I’d stopped to take a few pictures of the wooden tree carvings. I suddenly noticed that they had gone and when I found them they were nicely framed by the pergols in the distance with the sunlight making patterns on the ground. My camera at the time was a Pentax K200D and […]

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Hoverfly on flower

This image was taken with a Pentax K-r DSLT using a Tamron 70-300 mm Macro Zoom. Considering the camera and lens involved, I think this is quite a good quality image. The Pentax K-r does not have a sensor of the same calibre as the K-5 and the Tamron 70-300 lens cost me only £90 but at normal image size there is not noticeable noise in the image, and this was taken at iso3200 on a dull August afternoon in […]

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Macro Photography – A Bite to Eat

This picture is taken with my Tamron 90mm 1:1 macro lens in a field quite near my house in Stevenage, Hertfordshire UK. The insect is a soldier beetle which was walking up the stalk of a plant when I took this picture from above looking down into the undergrowth. The actual picture has been swung through 180 degrees; the insect was actually walking up the back of the stalk, but I think the picture looks better framed as it is […]

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Macro Photography – Hoverfly with Pollen

Early last year I bought myself a Tamron 90mm 1:1 macro lens for my Pentax K-r. Subsequently I upgraded the K-r to a K-5 and the image above is one of the first which I took with this combination. It’s taken at quite a high iso and this is because the picture was taken using the unique feature of the Pentax K-5, which is the ability to set the shutter speed and the aperture and let the camera adjust the […]

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