La Manche

A while back I journeyed to Dover and the White Cliffs. Just went for a walk and to see what it looks like. It’s an odd feeling looking at the massive modes of transport going about their business. Fascinating. Quite a bit like watching aircraft or trains. I took a few photos as a test of my cleaning of my camera sensor. There is a small spot that I can see in photographs still but overall the result is pretty good and I am a happy chappy. I didn’t want to use a gallery for this collection as I really like the photographs. Click on one to get a, slightly, larger image.

Dover Port
Dover Port
There'll Be Blue Birds Over . . . .
There’ll Be Blue Birds Over . . . .
SS Falcon From Above
SS Falcon From Above
Wreck and Not-Wreck
Wreck and Not-Wreck
SS Falcon
SS Falcon
Langdon Bay
Langdon Bay

Sensor Troubles

For a few years now I’ve had some dark spots on photographs I’ve taken of aircraft in the sky. These show up when I’m on full zoom on the telephoto lens and a recent trip to Headcorn really showed this up so much so that I had to edit the photographs to get rid of those dark spots. Finally I got around to searching for a solution after I eliminated it being the actual lens. The first thing is to try blowing the dust spots out with some air. This is where my troubles really began. The guide I saw said hold the camera with the sensor facing downwards and blow the air upwards into the camera body. This was attempted but without much thought as I was using a can of compressed air and had to angle the can horizontally to get the flow direction correct. A load of propellant came out of the can and sprayed into the camera body. All of this stuck to the sensor and I effectively ruined the camera.

Another searching of the internet resources led me to find a microfibre sensor wipe that might clean the sensor enough so that I can use the camera again. I was either going to spend GBP20 or so on some special wipes or I was going to have to send the camera off for a new sensor or professional clean. The twenty quid seemed worth it before going for the Amber Level response. One day later and I’ve got the camera body open with microfibre wipes in hand and I’m trying to clean the most sensitive part of the camera full in the knowledge that I might destroy it. The process completed and I now have an OK-ish camera. I still think it needs to be sent off for a proper clean but I might get away with just that rather than having to buy a new sensor. The camera is working a little better than before and the original spots are reduced. They are still there but not as prominent. I need to go somewhere I can take photos of aircraft flying to see what the background looks like.


One of the drawbacks of this lockdown [and by drawback I mean an entirely trivial thing that doesn’t really matter] is the inability to see new places. In the past I would often go for trips to see what is out there. During my normal summer break I would have travelled the length of this country seeking out new things. I would also have travelled to Germany to spend a lovely weekend watching bands at the M’era Luna festival in Hildesheim. The last three months have been spent at my house or in the local countryside [I am aware of the privilege there and I’ve written in the past about how I feel lucky to live where I do]. While I’m happy enough with my surrounds it is nice to get out and about. I miss seeing new things. I miss growing with experiences. I miss just sitting in a darkened room for two hours while images flicker in front of me.

Because I’ve not been doing anything new I haven’t been using my “big” camera. I’ve had plenty of projects to keep myself busy and the tech in my house just mysteriously keeps improving but I miss trying to get that lovely shot. Trying to frame a picture and get the camera settings correct so that the image “works”. By now I should have had trips to RAF Brize Norton and RAF Wittering, I should have been teaching weapon skills and I would have taken myself to the Lake District to bag some more mountains while camping at a site nestled between them. While the iPhone has been everywhere with me and I’ve taken some photographs with it I’d rather be out there doing proper stuff. I’ll have to think about how to do that. Maybe at the weekend. but, currently

the camera rests.

Time Lapse Plans

I’ve been thinking recently about creating a time lapse film of the view outside the back of my house. I think it would be nice. It’s a big open space and the weather and seasons changing would make it interesting. I quite like the challenge of figuring out the tech to do it. I’m going to investigate a small 1080p camera and then see if I can write some script [or steal it] to capture a still from it every hour or so. That would make a six minute video for a year’s worth of photos. Once it’s created I’ll write a communication on here and let you know.

Camera Flaws

I love my new Nikon camera. It takes great photos, is easy to use, has brilliant settings and feels great in my hands. It’s a great bit of kit.

I like my iPhone camera. It’s small, pretty much always on my person and, surprisingly, takes pretty good low light photos.

The problem is that my iPhone camera is getting on a bit and has flaws in every picture it takes. Normally these can’t be seen because there’s plenty of detail in those areas. However, when there is a steady area the flaws show up a lot. Just see this photo of Whitby and spot the problem areas.

Taken with my iPhone, hence the finger marks

I’m not sure if these can be cleaned away or if they are internal. I also can’t be bothered to find out.

The Country

Here’s some photographs I took while walking the dog yesterday morning. I think next time I want some really good shots that capture the look and feel of what I see I’ll have to take my D-SLR.
Problem is that by the time I have set the D-SLR up properly the moment will be lost!

WW2 Barrack Ruins




The Path


More Sunrise


Even More Sunrise