Stuff Report – 26 June 2015

Steps taken: 2,858
If you’re reading this on Facebook, make sure to click the link, or you’ll miss some photos. Not to mention some words.

Yes, it’s back to the weightless reports for a few days as I declined to take the scale to Wales with me. After a relaxed morning (croissants may have been involved at some point), and a light lunch, my brother[1] and I set off for West Wales, in particular St David’s, where you’ll find the largest cathedral in Wales in what is apparently Britain’s smallest city[2]:

St David's Cathedral

St David’s Cathedral

Camera X100T
Aperture ƒ/8
Shutter speed 1/850s
Focal length 19mm
ISO 400
Taken 15:57, 26 June, 2015

After dropping our bags at the City Inn, we walked the short distance to the cathedral, and after I’d taken a few photos, we went in where we briefly saw our brother[3][4] before he started his rehearsal for tomorrow. And in the interests of suspense and mystery, I won’t tell you what he was rehearsing for until tomorrow. Bet you can’t wait.

We had a bit of a look around, and I concluded that a proper return visit when I’ll pay the nominal fee for a photography permit and spend a while with my camera will be in order. I had a bit of a wander while Geoff had a sit down before we got together again:

Geoff at St David's

Geoff at St David’s

Camera X100T
Aperture ƒ/10
Shutter speed 1/105s
Focal length 23mm
ISO 200
Taken 16:23, 26 June, 2015

At this point a nice sit down in the beer garden of the Bishops seemed like a very good idea. Geoff had the usual Guinness and I had a Double Dragon from the Felinfoel Brewery, which was a nicely refreshing pint. We were so refreshed that we had a second round while enjoying the weather before returning to the City Inn.

Refreshments

Refreshments

Camera X100T
Aperture ƒ/5.6
Shutter speed 1/250s
Focal length 23mm
ISO 200
Taken 16:45, 26 June, 2015

Once back at our lodgings, it was time to eat. I couldn’t resist the deep-fried brie wedges as a starter, while Geoff had the Thai fishcakes. For mains, I had an excellent steak and ale pie (tender meat, rich gravy, outrageous mounds of puff pastry) with chips and peas, while Geoff had a cheeseburger. Any suggestion that Geoff had another Guinness while I had a couple of small glasses of Pinot Grigio will be unconvincingly denied.

Stay tuned for another exciting report tomorrow

[1] Hi Geoff  :wave:
[2] It’s a city because it has a cathedral, which used to be the only way a place could be called that. These days, they dish out royal charters all over the place….
[3] Hi Steve  :wave:
[4] Yes, there are three of us, but we’re rarely all together as this is considered dangerous to everyone else

Weight and Stuff Report – 25 June 2015

Weight: 206.1 pounds (14 stone 10.1 pounds, 93.5 kg)
Steps taken: 2,768

That’s odd – back down by quite a lot today. All quite random, I’m sure.

It was a bit of a different working day – mainly because it was a short one. I arrived at the outrageously early hour of 8:30, but left at the eminently sensible hour of 11:15. Why’s that? Well, I had to catch a train….

And here I am back in Pencoed for an extended weekend. Details of the cause of this will be revealed over the next few days.

Here are some more North Wales photos. This chap is hoping for an audience:

Are you listening?

Are you listening?

Camera X-T1
Aperture ƒ/8
Shutter speed 1/200s
Focal length 58.9mm
ISO 200
Taken 13:23, 16 June, 2015
Location 52° 54.8045′ 0″ N 4° 5.8692′ 0″ W

And come to think of it, so’s this guy:

David Lloyd George

David Lloyd George

Camera X-T1
Aperture ƒ/11
Shutter speed 1/200s
Focal length 62.4mm
ISO 1250
Taken 13:11, 14 June, 2015
Location 53° 8.3658′ 0″ N 4° 16.5099′ 0″ W

Weight and Stuff Report – 24 June 2015

Weight: 208.6 pounds (14 stone 12.6 pounds, 94.6 kg)
Steps taken: 2,516

Down another teeny bit today. What fun and excitement, eh?

Here’s another view of Portmeirion

Portmeirion

Portmeirion

Camera X-T1
Aperture ƒ/13
Shutter speed 1/200s
Focal length 62.4mm
ISO 800
Taken 15:10, 16 June, 2015
Location 52° 54.6472′ 0″ N 4° 5.9773′ 0″ W

Another thrilling report tomorrow…

Weight and Stuff Report – 23 June 2015

Weight: 208.8 pounds (14 stone 12.8 pounds, 94.7 kg)
Steps taken: 3,730

Down a teeny bit today…

Another busy day at work, but I did manage a bit of a walk at lunchtime.

This is a rhino to be found at Betws y Coed

Rhino

Rhino

Camera X-T1
Aperture ƒ/7.1
Shutter speed 1/200s
Focal length 78.7mm
ISO 500
Taken 14:09, 12 June, 2015
Location 53° 5.5529′ 0″ N 3° 48.0168′ 0″ W

And this is another view of that lovely old rusty bridge in the Elan Valley

Bridge Detail

Bridge Detail

Camera X-T1
Aperture ƒ/8
Shutter speed 1/200s
Focal length 29.3mm
ISO 250
Taken 12:02, 10 June, 2015
Location 52° 16.2606′ 0″ N 3° 34.1347′ 0″ W

Weight and Stuff Report – 22 June 2015

Weight: 209 pounds (14 stone 13 pounds, 94.8 kg)
Steps taken: 1,271
If you’re reading this on Facebook, make sure to click the link, or you’ll miss some photos. There’s tigers in there! (No, not Tigger this time)

Eh? What? Where did that come from? Obviously going back to work isn’t good for my weight, as that’s over two pounds heavier than yesterday. Or maybe the scale is playing silly buggers again…

Umm, yes. Went back to work today, was quite busy. Only a quick trip over the road for a sarnie at lunchtime (too busy and it was raining…).

Here’s a fun photo:

Puzzles

Puzzles

Camera X-T1
Aperture ƒ/5.6
Shutter speed 1/420s
Focal length 25.4mm
ISO 200
Taken 14:14, 11 June, 2015
Location 53° 19.7105′ 0″ N 3° 49.7011′ 0″ W

The puzzle being working out who’d wear those shoes, presumably.

This is nice – the tigers seem to be greeting each other:

Tigers

Tigers

Camera X-T1
Aperture ƒ/10
Shutter speed 1/200s
Focal length 116.1mm
ISO 1000
Taken 10:18, 12 June, 2015
Location 53° 17.7016′ 0″ N 3° 44.8104′ 0″ W

And due to cutbacks, this is the new intercity train being introduced on all main lines:

Cutbacks

Cutbacks

Camera X-T1
Aperture ƒ/8
Shutter speed 1/200s
Focal length 122.6mm
ISO 800
Taken 14:16, 12 June, 2015
Location 53° 5.5398′ 0″ N 3° 48.0393′ 0″ W

Weight and Stuff Report – 21 June 2015

Weight: 206.8 pounds (14 stone 10.8 pounds, 93.8 kg)
Steps taken: 5,060

Up a wee bit today, but never mind. After a bit of a lie in and some breakfast, I went out in a shopping direction again. Something may have been bought, details to follow…

But for now, here are some more photos from Llandudno. This windmill is perched outside a shop for reasons that weren’t immediately clear.

Windmill

Windmill

Camera X-T1
Aperture ƒ/5.6
Shutter speed 1/200s
Focal length 43.9mm
ISO 500
Taken 14:23, 11 June, 2015
Location 53° 19.5704′ 0″ N 3° 49.9507′ 0″ W

And this chap is apparently late for something:

Apparently he's late

Apparently he’s late

Camera X-T1
Aperture ƒ/8
Shutter speed 1/220s
Focal length 66.2mm
ISO 200
Taken 14:42, 11 June, 2015
Location 53° 19.3398′ 0″ N 3° 49.4663′ 0″ W

Which may account for this lady’s attitude:

The Queen of Hearts

The Queen of Hearts

Camera X-T1
Aperture ƒ/9
Shutter speed 1/200s
Focal length 46.6mm
ISO 1000
Taken 09:36, 11 June, 2015
Location 53° 19.4774′ 0″ N 3° 50.0026′ 0″ W

More to come, according to tuit supplies….

Weight and Stuff Report – 20 June 2015

Weight: 206.4 pounds (14 stone 10.4 pounds, 93.6 kg)
Steps taken: 9,156

Weight down again today. Still slightly higher than it was before I went away, but not by much.

What with all the travelling yesterday, I didn’t do my shopping last night, so I did it this morning. I even walked to Tesco’s. Though that may have been something to do with my travel pass expiring while I was in Wales rather than any enthusiasm for exercise…

Anyway, shopping done, I got home and had a late breakfast (croissants, as it happens), then decided to go into Newcastle for a bit more shopping. I needed to get a new doorbell, as while I was away, somebody decided to attempt to remove the bell-push from the door frame. Well, they managed to rive the front off, leaving the back bit stuck in place. And of course, broke the little plastic clips in the process, meaning that it wouldn’t go back together without being glued, which would make changing the battery a bit tricky when that needed to be done. Whoever did it must have a doorbell collection thing going on, because they managed to take away my neighbour’s one.

So I got one of those, then decided to have a wander to the MetroCentre, where I resisted buying anything expensive. I was tempted again by the Fujifilm X100T, which you might recall me failing to buy in January. Well, it’s a whole £100 cheaper now, making it only slightly eye-watering. But I resisted. And so I came home, put the washing on,, cleaned my front door (white uPVC really shows the grime) and attached my new doorbell button thingy. I just hope it survives…

More holiday photos for you now. These are trees in the Elan Valley, complete with artistic lens flare:

Elan Valley Trees

Elan Valley Trees

Camera X-T1
Aperture ƒ/6.4
Shutter speed 1/320s
Focal length 20.8mm
ISO 200
Taken 12:44, 10 June, 2015
Location 52° 18.2729′ 0″ N 3° 37.3403′ 0″ W

And yes, that is a properly vertical image. The ground really does slope like that.

And this is a clock at the Devil’s Bridge station:

What's the time?

What’s the time?

Camera X-T1
Aperture ƒ/5
Shutter speed 1/400s
Focal length 55.6mm
ISO 200
Taken 13:38, 10 June, 2015
Location 52° 22.5771′ 0″ N 3° 51.2556′ 0″ W

Here’s a closer view of the goat on the Great Orme:

Great Orme Goat

Great Orme Goat

Camera X-T1
Aperture ƒ/5
Shutter speed 1/600s
Focal length 52.4mm
ISO 200
Taken 10:23, 11 June, 2015
Location 53° 19.9358′ 0″ N 3° 51.2652′ 0″ W

More to come!

Weight and Stuff Report – 19 June 2015

Weight: 207.8 pounds (14 stone 11.8 pounds, 94.3 kg)
Steps taken: 3,152

Aaaand I’m back. And the “just got off the train” weight is up a bit from when I went away.

The trip back was nearly awkward, as initially the train from Pencoed to Cheltenham was going to give up a stop early at Gloucester, due to “signalling problems”. Now I don’t know about that part of the country, but in the North East, that’s usually code for “some scrote’s knicked the cables again”. But when the train got to Gloucester, the destination display on the platform read “Cheltenham”. So, I asked the train guard if we were indeed going to Cheltenham and he said that he thought so, but they were waiting for confirmation. Which came, and so I got where I needed to be in plenty of time to get some lunch and wait for the next train. Which was a bit late anyway, and continued to be late all the way to Newcastle. But not by too much, so that was OK. And now I’m home.

No fresh photos today, so here are a few from the last couple of weeks. This is a delightfully rusty old bridge in the Elan Valley.

Bridge

Bridge

Camera X-T1
Aperture ƒ/8
Shutter speed 1/200s
Focal length 18mm
ISO 320
Taken 11:58, 10 June, 2015
Location 52° 16.26′ 0″ N 3° 34.1696′ 0″ W

And this is a detail of the statue of the poet Shelley, not far from the bridge:

Shelley

Shelley

Camera X-T1
Aperture ƒ/5.6
Shutter speed 1/200s
Focal length 104.2mm
ISO 500
Taken 12:08, 10 June, 2015
Location 52° 16.1564′ 0″ N 3° 34.2742′ 0″ W

And this is the Queen of Hearts, another of those Alice-themed works in Llandudno

Off with their heads

Off with their heads

Camera X-T1
Aperture ƒ/4
Shutter speed 1/1100s
Focal length 21.6mm
ISO 200
Taken 09:35, 11 June, 2015
Location 53° 19.4761′ 0″ N 3° 49.9995′ 0″ W

More photos as tuits allow…

 

Holiday Report – 18 June 2015

Steps taken: 9,779
If you’re reading this on Facebook, make sure to click through, or you might miss some photos.

While my brother had a nicely relaxed day at home, I took myself to Cardiff on the train. I decided to just have a general wander, so left the X-T1 behind. But the iPhone insisted on coming along, so today’s report does contains some photos anyway.

After a walk down St Mary Street

St Mary Street

St Mary Street

Camera iPhone 5s
Aperture ƒ/2.2
Shutter speed 1/2400s
Focal length 4.15mm
ISO 32
Taken 11:19, 18 June, 2015
Location 51° 28.6887′ 0″ N 3° 10.692′ 0″ W

I popped in to the National Museum of Wales, where I saw their new fragmentary dinosaur and a quite brilliant exhibition of photographs by Chalkie Davies from the NME covering the 70s and 80s – great stuff including formal portraits, stage shots and nicely posed images of artists ranging from David Bowie through the Sex Pistols and the Clash to Bruce Springsteen, and many many more. Well worth a visit if you’re anywhere near Cardiff. And I didn’t even know it was on, so it was a pleasant surprise.

I then went for a further wander through Cardiff’s lovely Victorian shopping arcades,including the High Street Arcade

High Street Arcade

High Street Arcade

Camera iPhone 5s
Aperture ƒ/2.2
Shutter speed 1/500s
Focal length 4.15mm
ISO 32
Taken 12:32, 18 June, 2015
Location 51° 28.8398′ 0″ N 3° 10.7797′ 0″ W

The suspended lettering spells out “SUMMER”, in case you’re wondering. When I first entered the arcade from another entrance, I was reading it backwards and my addled little brain couldn’t quite work it out.

I took an indirect route via the more modern St David’s centre, which while impressive is somehow much less interesting than the old arcades, gravitating to the Morgan Arcade

Morgan Arcade

Morgan Arcade

Camera iPhone 5s
Aperture ƒ/2.2
Shutter speed 1/2000s
Focal length 4.15mm
ISO 32
Taken 13:01, 18 June, 2015
Location 51° 28.7198′ 0″ N 3° 10.6548′ 0″ W

While I was there, I stopped for the traditional espresso and toasted teacake in the excellent Plan Café.

I also visited the Cardiff Story exhibition in the Old Library[1], where an interactive video thingy taught me something I either never knew, or had totally forgotten. I knew that St Mary Street was named after the old church of St Mary that used to stand in that general location (it gradually collapsed after its foundations were damaged in a flood, and was replaced by a new one in another street). But I didn’t know that its outline was marked on the back wall of the Prince of Wales[2]. So I had a look, and so it is:

Ghost of St Mary's

Ghost of St Mary’s

Camera iPhone 5s
Aperture ƒ/2.2
Shutter speed 1/1150s
Focal length 4.15mm
ISO 32
Taken 13:47, 18 June, 2015
Location 51° 28.6467′ 0″ N 3° 10.6862′ 0″ W

And after that, I got the next train back to Pencoed.

[1] Though technically, it’s the old old library, as the current library replaced the one that replaced it.
[2] Not the actual Prince of Wales, but the Wetherspoon’s pub of that name. Though older Cardiffians[3] will remember that it used to be a cinema known for showing, err gentlemen’s films, and was often complained about as being the first thing visitors saw when leaving the station[4].
[3] That would be me
[4] Always had posters with the names of the films on show. Can’t recall any, but I don’t think they were the kind of thing shown at the Odeon

More hazy thoughts

In response to a few questions, here’s some more on the Dehaze thingy in Lightroom CC. For comparison, you can see an unedited version, one where the normal contrast slider has been used, and one with dehaze applied. You’ll see that dehaze has pulled in more detail in the castle, but an odd vignette has also appeared.

In practice, I’d use this as part of the process rather than just as a single adjustment, but this does give an idea of what it can do.

Anyway, here’s Harlech Castle again:

Original - no edits

Original – no edits

Camera X-T1
Aperture ƒ/6.4
Shutter speed 1/200s
Focal length 52.4mm
ISO 320
Taken 09:54, 17 June, 2015
Location 52° 51.6887′ 0″ N 4° 6.6977′ 0″ W

And here’s a version with lots of contrast added:

Contrast adjustment

Contrast adjustment

Camera X-T1
Aperture ƒ/6.4
Shutter speed 1/200s
Focal length 52.4mm
ISO 320
Taken 09:54, 17 June, 2015
Location 52° 51.6887′ 0″ N 4° 6.6977′ 0″ W

That didn’t really make a lot of difference. So how about extreme amounts of dehaze?

Dehaze

Dehaze

Camera X-T1
Aperture ƒ/6.4
Shutter speed 1/200s
Focal length 52.4mm
ISO 320
Taken 09:54, 17 June, 2015
Location 52° 51.6887′ 0″ N 4° 6.6977′ 0″ W

Well, i’d want to lose the darkening in the corners, and make some other adjustments, or indeed not bother with such an extremely misty image as this one, but I think this does have some use…