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Archive for October, 2012

I had a week off recently as my girlfriend had her half-term holidays (she’s a teacher before you get worried) so we decided to get away for a bit. Our initial plans of a sunny getaway soon faded but we thought going back to my home county of Derbyshire to stay with my parents would be a  fun, if slightly damper alternative. It would also give me a chance to have a go at driving again, as I hadn’t driven for three whole years and I was worried I may have lost my already admittedly shaky driving ability.

It turns out I can still drive which is a relief, and it meant we could explore places in the Peak District I’ve not been to for years such as Bakewell, Chatsworth and Castleton. I did take my camera but I was mainly using it for general snaps as I don’t have a compact but whilst exploring Peveril Castle I did manage to get a shot I was very happy with.

On my return home I also had a little treat waiting to help ease me back into working life. I bloody love the Mountain Goats so I was always going to get their latest album and it seems very good as usual. The other one is January Songs by Darren Hayman (Hefner frontman). This a collection of 31 songs, with one written each day during the month of January 2011. You can read more about it here. Obviously with this sort of concept the quality will inevitably be variable but in general I’m impressed at how good most of the songs are. I’ve always loved his lyrics and many of the songs on the album capture the beauty of seemingly mundane details that I find so interesting. Also each album cover is hand drawn by Hayman himself so this album I own is truly unique which is pretty nice!

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Instagram

I’m a little late to the party when it comes to this but I’ve had a little play with Instagram over the last few months. There is a lot of camera snobbery when it comes to these phone apps and I can see why, as all it does is place a ready made filter over the top of the photo and let you blur areas creating a false depth of field.

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However, I do think that if you take them for what they are then they can be quite fun. To me they are just equivalent of a compact camera and a way of capturing times with friends and making small things you spot throughout your day a little more interesting.

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I am occasionally surprised by the quality of some of the images people produce using camera phones. Not really my cup of tea subject wise but I was impressed with the photos of the Olympics captured by Dan Chung here and the IPPA is interesting with some pretty good images. They’re all quite small so I don’t know how well they would hold up when enlarged due to the size of the sensor in a camera. I know the photos my camera produces look quite pixelated when taken off the phone.

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So for me they would never take the place of an SLR for my food photography as I wouldn’t get the quality that I want (especially true for my phone which has a pretty terrible camera!) but if I got a slightly better phone I can see how they are good for holiday snaps and days out.

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