A Friday afternoon creative mind spring postcard.
I know I am a tragic romantic! Have a lovely weekend.
Maybe I am just way behind, but I had no idea I could listen to most of my music online for free on Last.fm. It means I no longer need my iPod at work.
And better – most of my iPod songs are free for you to listen to too: here is my personal radio station. And feel free to comment on my bad taste in music.
Nick Drake’s – Northern Sky just passed my ears and I got an immediate urge to see Serendipity again tonight. What a great song. And that scene from Serendipity makes me cry every time.
In other news – I am updating my CV. There, I am not sure this is a wise thing to write on one’s blog but now I said it and you can kick me if I not soon write that my CV has been updated. It is time.
And my quote of the day (as it is exactly what happened today):
“Best friends are people who switch on the light if you are stumbling around in the dark.”
I think that quote is postcard worthy.
I went for a photography meetup on Sunday and the trip went to Hasting. Hasting is a about 2 hours from London by train and while it is an ok place with cliffs, fishing boats and of course the sea, I still prefer Eastbourne (Beachy Head) and Brighton.
The weather was perfect (my face is still red) but somehow I wasn’t 100% motivated to take photos so they are not all great. But I am very happy with the above young seagull photo. I love the colours.
I think in the end the theme for me became taking photos of typical things on a British beach.
So we have seagulls, women in bikini (and I will leave it up to you if that is a good thing or not …), men putting up windscreens, deck chairs, swan water bikes and families with fish and chips (and the man wearing a t-shirt saying – “If found – return to the pub” ).
Surprisingly enough Hastings also has two Funiculars.
Weirdest photo of the day must be this bear:
It looks incredibly sad and depressed. Understandable if you have a hole in your belly and are attached to a red tractor.
Meet Leonard, the squirrel, my new neighbour. I know that most people don’t like the grey squirrels because they are making life for the red squirrels very difficult. But I must admit that I still find them cute. I spotted Leonard when I left my flat this morning, he was sitting on the wall eating his breakfast. He stopped shortly to pose for me.
It must have looked a bit weird, me in my business suit (external client meeting today) taking pictures of a squirrel. When I put my camera back in my bag I realised that that was what the house keeper was thinking, as he was looking at me with one hand on his side. He did not look happy. He probably hates Leonard.
I think he hates me too now. He is the grumpiest bugger I have met in my life. I waved to him though when I saw him looking at me. He didn’t bother to wave back, but nodded a tiny little nod. That was probably his Britishness kicking in. I hope he doesn’t take it out on Leonard.
Today it was time for some neighborhood exploring and I took a walk passed through:
Not only does this book contain contributions from your favourite celebrities (Bill Nighy (worth to buy the book for alone), Tony Blair, Ozzy Osbourne, Michael Sheen, Richard E. Grant, Al Pacino, Kevin Spacey – just to name a couple), it also contains fantastic portraits by award winning photographer Cambridge Jones.
You might want to get your copy for the coffee table. (The above pic is the book being advertised on Piccadilly Circus spot the man with the funky specs! And yes it was nice weather today.)
I had no idea it was the area of Lord’s Cricket ground until I suddenly stood right beside it. I think there was a game going on as they were selling tickets for it at the tube station.
This a rather large Oxfam shop specialised in books, film and music. And seeing as they were looking for volunteers to help in the shop in weekends I am going to be on a try out there next Sunday. I have long been wondering if I could use my weekends for something a little bit more useful than hanging about in the cinema, so this seems worth a try. Let’s see how it works out.
What way are you going?
Thirty street pianos have been installed on streets, in public squares and parks, train stations, and markets in London, they are a part of the Play me, I’m yours project which is currently visiting London. “Like a creative blank canvas, the pianos are there for any member of the public to play and engage with. The pianos will be in place until July 13th, after which time they’ll be donated to local schools and community groups.”
I stumbled upon the first on on Leicester Square where girl was playing a classical piece, and when I visited Portobello Road last week there was an older man playing a beautiful piece of music. He had parked his glass of beer on the piano and went for it, impressing all bystanders. What a wonderful idea.
Sing us a song, you’re the piano man
Sing us a song tonight
Well, we’re all in the mood for a melody
And you’ve got us feelin’ alright
On another note, the Fourth Plinth on Trafalgar Square has been turned into a living Art work. In stead of having a statue or sculpture there, living people, one at a time, one hour at the time, are taking stand on the plinth and do whatever they want to do making a living portrait of the UK.
There is a live webstream here: One and Another website. Or if you are in London, go visit Trafalgar Square, the event will continue until September. You can also apply for a place on the Plinth, should you be interested!
The live webstream is kind of fascinating.
After my Adobe Premiere course last week I really needed to go and use it for something. I have long been wanting to experiment with time-lapse photography, so I took a couple of test shots around Trafalgar Square and glued them together into a time-lapse sequence.
Just a couple of notes:
1. It feels good to make something again, even if it is just a simple thing like this.
2. The photos
The camera I used for this is my small pocket camera (Panasonic Lumix TZ4). It was handheld so there is some shaking. It also doesn’t have a built in timer so I used the “burst” option in stead. Also – not all photos are sharp.
If you want to do this properly you will have to use a tripod, and to make things easier for yourself, a good camera with a timer.
I am going to try it again with my Nikon D80. This camera should take better pictures. It doesn’t have a timer either, but I bought an external timer which can be connected to the camera. This sort-of remote control will then take pictures every x seconds. (where x is the interval you have set it to).
But basically what you need to do it to take lots of pictures with very short intervals of the same subject. (And that subject should, obviously be moving/changing etc.)
It was really easy to turn this into a video clip in Premiere. It was a breeze to add a bit of music to it and adding some titles is very easy too.
I set the duration for each photograph at 0.2 seconds. (one fifth of a second, 5 photos per second)
(Note: you don’t need Premiere for this, you could probably do the same thing in Windows Movie maker.)
And I can hear you think – why did you not just shoot a video clip in stead?
Well I kind of like the quirky way in which people or things seem to move in time lapse videos, there is an odd look and feel to it. So I want to experiment with it a bit more.
To do some more practising with the editing – next weekend I am going to visit those two lovely dogs again and I will try to shoot some video clips of them to cut together some sort of “A day in the life of …” clip. Stay tuned.
Update: Uploaded a new version. It is slightly longer with some more footage of people on Trafalgar Square. And I put in transitions between the different sections. And it is slighly better quality.