Wednesday, 24 August 2011

I haven't posted for a couple of weeks mainly cos I've been away doing back to back surveys.  The first one we saw loads of Stormy's and a few Sooties but best of all was a mind blowing 400+ Basking Sharks, truly incredible numbers.  The second survey was on Orkney and Alison came with me so we could have a few days holiday.  We didn't see many birds but went and had a look at all the Neolithic standing stones and archaeology, some of it is really spectacular.  We managed to catch this stunning sunset at the stones of Stenness

I played around with exposures and some of the scene modes in the camera and found one that produces results very similar to the Hornsea sunset I messed about with in photoshop the other week.

On balance I think I prefer the first one but the vivid colours would certainly work in some shots.  After standing around getting bored by me taking a thousand shots Alison decided to take one with her iphone, I can't believe how well it turned's better than any of my camera shots!

I also took some shots here in the daytime and I've had a mess about with various effects such as levels in different areas and sharpening it.  I wish I'd got the grass right in the foreground more in focus then I could really go to town on sharpening it, but to be honest I'm pretty happy with this considering I'm a novice with landscapes.

It's that time of year again so on Friday I went to the Birdfair with the cus and Pete, we indulged in the usual game of trying to see which stand had the fittest women.  This year top prize had to go to the local TV presenter doing a piece to camera outside the In Focus tent, she were a bit of a peach!  All the rest were very distant seconds but best of the rest seemed to be the Sri Lanka stand and Viking Optical. 

I bought the new North Atlantic Seabirds multimedia guide.  The footage of White faced Stormy is very gripping and slightly vomit inducing if you watch it too many times on repeat!  Moving boat+moving bird+hand held camera=dizzyness and being sick in ones mouth!  I also took the plunge and bought a Remembird so hopefully when the Blyth's Pipit flies over me I'll nail it.

Whilst in the optics Marquee I got talking to one of the guys from Swarovski, very interesting!  As regular readers will know I went and had a butchers through all the 80mm+ scopes at Cley Spy earlier this year and found the Swaro to be the best.  I want a new big scope but had a slight niggle that the Swaro is the oldest of the bunch and is maybe due for replacement.  Well seems I might be right, although the guy said it was only his opinion and he didn't know any facts he thought there would be a new scope at next years birdfair and he thought it would be 90mm+ objective, that's gonna be bright and no doubt expensive.  Anyway it's made my mind up to wait and see what develops.

Managed my first visit to Spurn of the Autumn on Sunday and again today, didn't see the hoped for Greenish, they're all in Norfolk, and Northumberland!  really could have done with a bit more east in the wind to be good but did see a few Pied and Spotted Fly's and a Redstart, missed the Wryneck by a couple of minutes though.

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