Sunday 30 November 2008

The Grey Horse! - # 08/277

This is IT! So much so that 19 years ago, when my 15 year old son took me there, he had to tell me too "cool it" and threatened not to take me again. However, just recently he told me that the "Hamsters" are still playing there after all these years, and I ought to go. "You'd enjoy yourself, Daddy". This certainly is THE premier live music venue in Kingston upon Thames...and look!!!'s "EVERY EVENING 7 DAYS A WEEK"!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Saturday 29 November 2008

Not so cosy outlook?- # 08/276

Warm winter scene at the market with hot spicy seasonal stuff and a nice projection of a warm glow. Last year it seemed as if everyone had money to burn, and stability would stretch on forever. This year the cash all burned away and many will face hard times. Already the Repossession Notices are appearing in the windows of closed shop premises.

Friday 28 November 2008

Late opening - quick fix - on the Town!- # 08/275

How do I look? How am I doing? Where am I going? Who will I meet? Such trivia! Such style! We are not savages, you know!

Wednesday 26 November 2008

El Mariachi! - # 08/274

I really must go. But Baby, it's cold outside. I really can't stay. But Baby, it's cold outside. ...............Ahh, but it's cold outside.

Camera: Olympus E3. Lens 14-35 1:2.0 Hand held. Total weight 2.0 Kg. Clothing: extra thick padded winter trousers; 100% wind proof coat with special padded inner layer worn over thick Shetland pullover; touch sensitive, thin, warm high-tech gloves for camera operation; cotton, wind proof sailor's cap. Sometimes I ask myself "Why?"

Tuesday 25 November 2008

Planet China! Richer Sounds! Japanese accompaniment - # 08/273

Moving forward, changing pace, changing gear, increasing power, focusing and concentrating. Chaotic yet ordered. Following visible instructions and navigating by instinct. Richmond upon Thames Daily Photo is evolving into its next phase, gathering new images, striking out into new areas of experience - slowly but surely.

Sunday 23 November 2008

A walk through Time - # 08/272

This late evening scene in the Market Square of Kingston upon Thames (next town, 5 miles along from Richmond) shows us 1,000 years of unbroken history and the activities have not changed.

The buildings show us a 400 year span, just hidden behind the crowd is a spot where 10th Century Saxon Kings were crowned before the Normans arrived in 1066, and the trading has always been there, with river transport and quayside just a few steps away behind the buildings.

As a maritime and trading nation Britain has always been an island where many races are seen and many languages heard.

Townscapes like this fascinate me.

Saturday 22 November 2008

The last bus - # 08/271

Just what you don't want to see on a cold winter night.

(P.S. Sorry for the lack of images and comment at the moment. Normal service will be resumed as soon as possible).

Wednesday 19 November 2008

Tactical conference - # 08/270

Two conservators discussing the removal of the tapestry.

Tuesday 18 November 2008

Wavelets on Water, Teddington Lock - # 08/269

Recently I've enjoyed trying to capture different patterns on water. There's nothing dramatic......this is soft Richmond upon Thames, after all. Nevertheless, I took a little bit of time in choosing this. I find it interesting because if you study it you realise that you can see the green of the trees on the river bank and even a fleck or two of the brilliant blue sky. This is what gives the water that rather scratchy look.

In other words there is actually more in the image than you think: but don't spend as much time looking as I did preparing this post!! ;-)

Monday 17 November 2008

Completely off the wall - # 08/268

So: the tapestry is removed from the wall, held on the cross beam, and the scaffold is wheeled back. The helpers on the top lower the tapestry slowly and those below drag it gently back and lay it face down on the specially prepared extra soft, acid free bedding before rolling it into a kind of Swiss Roll with lots of protective layers (like the jam) inside each turn.

Inside the roll will be a special tube to stiffen it and hold it firm. Dead easy, really! All you need is an army of helpers and many, many hours of planning and preparation, and a certificate in conservation and several other crafts.

Saturday 15 November 2008

Sunset, Richmond upon Thames - # 08/267

Every 90 seconds a plane lands at Heathrow (LHR). It was there, so I leave it there. No Photoshop for me.

Late evening produces a dramatic sunset over the river Thames. The railway bridge is just visible in the background.

Thursday 13 November 2008

The secret is in the detail - # 08/266

Many of you enjoyed yesterday's insight. Here's a detail. Imagine the brownish shreds to be pink and if you enlarge the photo you will get a taste of the intense blue of the original. Amazing! Brilliant blue and pink. This shot used the macro setting on the versatile and highly capable Olympus C7070 wz.

You also enjoyed the appearance of yesterday's photo. Once again, it's a matter of detail. You need a tripod. By paying very careful attention to the siting of the camera and choosing the right metering you can do it. I chose a low ISO, an aperture of f8.0 (for good detail and depth of field), and used centre-weighted metering to make the best of the wonderful lighting effect. A few test shots, a little experimentation as to the points from which the light is metered and an appreciation of how your camera works will guarantee a happy outcome. It's in the detail rather than in the equipment. That shot was done on the Olympus E3 using the 14-35mm f2.0 lens which delivers a beautiful result thanks to the way it handles the available light.

Wednesday 12 November 2008

Going to bed - # 08/265

It's a bit difficult to do a daily photo at the moment, and here's one reason why. Putting Ham House to bed is quite a busy activity and the whole staff plus many skilled volunteers are involved.

Over the last several days we have been preparing to take down a tapestry that is magnificent and hundreds of years old. It will go for restoration which will take at least a year.

Over the last 3 days we actually took it down........imagine taking three days to take down your curtains to send to the cleaners.

Removal included making a special box to precise measurements and specifications to allow safe transport to the restoration factory. The Handy-Man Team including me made up the box according to instructions.

Here's the 17th Century "Long Gallery".........all quiet, early in the morning, waiting for the arrival of the team. Lying around is the equipment needed. Today is "Taking Down Day" - it took about 3 to 4 hours after many other hours of preparation and planning.

If you go way back to posts 9 - 12 in 2007 (plus a couple either side, or maybe not???) you will find a small set of posts about a previous project.

Tuesday 11 November 2008

Expressionism let loose in Kingston Market Place - # 08/264

A wet, grey day, a slow shutter speed and a market stall about to close: rust on the bottom edge, and a couple of late shoppers rushing by. Kingston upon Thames market square on the last day of September.

A few tweaks on the "curves" in post - processing, and conversion to "greyscale" produce a n interesting effect. Perhaps you won't like it.

(Kingston is 5 miles up river from Richmond. It's an ancient town where over 1,000 years ago Saxon kings were crowned.)

Monday 10 November 2008

The Birch and the Eucalyptus Tree- # 08/263

Just a "Happy Snap" from my front window. It's interesting to see how the North European Birch reacts to Autumn compared with the huge Australian Eucalyptus.

It's so nice to watch these trees throughout the year, in all lights and weathers.

Sunday 9 November 2008

In Flanders fields the poppies grow, between the crosses row, on row. - # 08/262

...............and now in the fields of Afghanistan.

November 9th. Rememberance Sunday. November 11th. Rememberance Day.

Friday 7 November 2008

Richmond Bridge under grey November skies - # 08/261

Well, we go from Birkett-Foster ( ) and my interpretation of his "Richmond Hill" - (thank you Richard of Zurich: I do indeed sometimes kid myself that I am a far better artist - Tee Hee!) - to this view, equally true, but on another day and looking East towards the old bridge (1778) and Richmond Hill instead of West from the top of The Hill.

The spectacular sunset and reflections on the water, yesterday, were indeed real, just as the grey overcast here, today, is real.

The "fault" in yesterday's splendid artefact is a degree of "over-sharpening". I was playing in my trial version of Adobe Lightroom 2.1 - a magnificent archiving and post-processing tool. But in spite of the over sharpening, the rest, colour, sunset, general scene are REAL!!! How lucky I am to live here.

Wednesday 5 November 2008

Travelling through - # 08/260

It's always nice to have friends drop in.

A month ago Julie from came to Richmond upon Thames and we were able to show her "The View" from Richmond Hill. Four "narrow boats" (standard British Gauge canal barges - narrow because our canals were mostly completed by 1810) put on a show for her and a "Turneresque" sunset played itself out in the west as a violent-looking storm cloud approached from the east and north behind us.

Any CDP blogger passing this way is always welcome to drop in.

Tuesday 4 November 2008

White gloves and shroud on a chair - # 08/259

Ham House is closed for the winter. Cleaning and detailed conservation work will begin. The pieces of the collection will rest under their tailor-made shrouds. Cotton gloves, acid-free wrapping paper and special shoes will be the order of the day. The photographer will be let out to play with light and shadow, the texture of the materials and the humour of the team dedicated to their work. The handy-men will toil to construct scaffolds and special tools for the job.

Monday 3 November 2008

The weir at Teddington Lock - # 08/258

Straight, curved. Vertical, horizontal. Solid, fluid. Hard, soft. Static, moving. Fast, slow. Agitated, calm. Natural, man-made. Wild, tame. Dangerous, safe. Uncontrolled, controlled. Ordered, chaotic. Animal.