Posts Tagged ‘Chester’

I am Iguana

Friday, January 23rd, 2009

A year pass to the local zoo is a rather fine Christmas present indeed – thank you!

Limefield Park

Friday, January 23rd, 2009

Border Terrier dog, chewing a ballSheep dog running in a field
Golden light, clear air, frosty ground, pretty dogs, pure cheese!

Chester Zoo

Monday, November 24th, 2008

Chester Zoo. It’s 10 minutes away from my house on a push bike, yet I hadn’t been there since I was a wee bairn, on a school trip from St. Wilfrid’s High School in Blackburn. I remember holding hands with a girl I had a crush on during the coach trip back from the zoo. Twelve years old I was and I didn’t dare utter a word to her again after that. School trip fond memories. The smells of the souvenir Zoo pencil’s and leather bookmarks, eating our packed lunches on the sun-baked lawns, the punch of humidity as we entered in the steamy crocodile’s lair.

Although I am blown away by the wildlife photography of Martin Bailey and Nick Brandt, it’s not something I really feel drawn towards in any way, but an enforced stint indoors, a poorly landscape lens, oh yer, and the timely arrival of a bling new zoom lens I have been saving my pocket money up for months to buy, made a visit to the animals seem a very appealing lunch break. I should have gone back a lot sooner – it’s a fantastic resource to have on the doorstep and seeing the levels the zoo are going to in conserving endangered species is remarkable. Sod it, in fact I am going to buy a season pass.

18th April 2008

Friday, April 18th, 2008

Hamish, on squirrel patrol.

This photo uses post-processing software called [DxO filmPack], which emulates the characteristics of specific print and slide film. Digital photographs can sometimes be too literal in their representation of a scene and therefore lack any romance as a result. The real reason I have a posted a doggy picture – I am going away without him for two weeks, and now have a photo of him to look at while I am away.

15th April 2008

Tuesday, April 15th, 2008

Paul Bebe, Les Arc, 2006

Memorial, Paul’s funeral, Blacon crematorium, this morning.

Our mountain biking buddy, Paul, died of cancer this month at only 40 years old. It only feels like a moment ago we spent carefree days on the trails, Paul lugging his super-heavy Orange Patriot downhill bike around the cross-country trails with us. He always beat us to the top.

Paul was one of those friends that makes you feel very fortunate to have had him in your life. He was a great person and we are going to miss him. He was friendly, generous and kind, always willing to lend a helping hand in his typical laid back style. Nothing was ever too much trouble.

He was a man of few words but the ones he used were well chosen. His one liners were sure to have you in stitches. This went with a mischievous streak that you always had to watch out for. You could be sure to end up with a smile on your face when Paul was about.

Although quiet he was not shy and was always involved with things. We met through one of his great loves; mountain biking. He loved the outdoors and was always keen to head into the hills. He gained a lot of respect for dragging his heavy Orange Patriot bike up mountains. I don’t know how he did it. This strength was something that showed in everything he did, no matter how hard the task he just got on with it and never complained. Even when he was diagnosed with cancer he just shrugged, seemed to take it in his stride and bought a new (and lighter) mountain bike to ride, ready for when he got better.

Although not the fastest of the mountain bikers we know he still beat us up to the top of the hill and left us standing on the downhills. When I think of Paul I will only have happy times to remember. In particular I always come back to him letting me think I was at last going to beat him to the top of a climb. Just before the summit he would give me a cheeky grin and effortlessly cruise past me only to disappear in a cloud of dust down the other side.

There was standing room only at his funeral. It takes a remarkable person to be so well liked and so highly thought of. He has left his mark on our lives and for that we will be grateful.

We will miss you Paul, we hope your Orange Patriot is with you now.

14th April 2008

Monday, April 14th, 2008

The first broad bean shoot this year, Jiffy 7 peat pellets.

13th April 2008

Sunday, April 13th, 2008

Eileen and Frank, next door, at home just after the Sunday service. Thanks guys.

12th April 2008

Saturday, April 12th, 2008

Slate pots, in progress.

Good slate is so enjoyable to work with. Making these pots today gave me a really sense of connection with the past. Maybe it’s because slate can’t be worked without slowing down and being patient. Slate is unforgiving to any modern-day rushing around; it won’t hesitate to break with one over-zealous impact.

10th April 2008

Thursday, April 10th, 2008

River Dee, Chester

On the way back from borrowing a lens this evening (thanks Jim), this amazing rainbow appeared in the sky. As I crossed the river, I couldn’t pass by without a shot.

8th April 2008

Tuesday, April 8th, 2008

This chap lives on my street. He is a real talent on a bike and rarely rides these local park dirt jumps any more – they just ain’t big enough for him.

It seems like shooting this sort of thing is a lesson in keeping it simple; sun near straight on, fast shutter speed, wide angle lens to show the landing/context, getting in very low and close (i.e. lying in the mud in this case), then just shooting loads. On the ‘cool sports’ theme, I love the work of photographer [Ryan Allan] who has shot some amazing skate, bike and surf images, but all shot in an natural, earthy style. Inspiring.