Sunday, October 31, 2010

Ask your MP/MSP

This is a great analysis of the current economic situation. Great to watch as well as listening too. Do watch then start penning some letters to your MP/MSPs .
Crises Of Capitalism

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Nuffin much

Been doing a few things that mean I haven't really got much new to show you at the mo. Sill, I found this snap fro,m a trip a few years back and it brought back wonderful memories. From the island of Cuba. Lovely place and terrific people. I you have not been its a must see place before it changes and becomes obsessed by consumerism like everywhere else!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Tolsta, on glass

Another Ilford plate I shot today - looking over part of the village!
I'm getting the hang of this :-) At least I think so.


Now I have a 4x5 on loan from the Good Mr Toots, I have shot a couple of Ilford Glass plates - just testing them to get exposure just right. Or rightish I should say. This is my Atget period :-)

Monday, October 25, 2010


After yesterday's diabolics which I'm still trying to get my head around, here's a much nicer subject; Murray, man about village. When he's not herding sheeps, knitting peat or making wonderful wooden things he's drinking tea. Nice.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Did anyone hear Radio Scotland's Scotland at Prayer programme last Saturday morning? I must admit its not my usual listening but I woke up early and turned the radio on. I was astonished to hear a local [born of the Isle of Lewis] spokesman for himself aire his views slagging off 'incomers' , Sunday ferries, planes and the good 'pagan' people of Berwickshire. Astonished!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Ere e is

Mr Batty. Met im today, had a natter as you do, enquired about his good wife Nora [Aka; Anna] and went home and promptly fell over the paper-neg snap of the fella taken a while back and posted earlier on this blog. I think its due another outing since it does show Mr Batty's caring side.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010


I was out shooting some film with the Perkeo 6x6 which has been out of action for some time after I .... never mind. Anyway, Coelyne managed to sort the shutter for me dripping some positive vibes into the mechanism and I, yes I all on my lonesome, nearly have managed to get somewhere near infinity on the focus. Sort of.
Anyway, the weather was a tad uneven today and I got caught in a heavy hail-shower soon after. Still, the snap is quite nice me thinks.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Nice stroll

A fine little gaff
Eve and I took off last Saturday for a light stroll in the otherlands and decided, after a quick consultation with the Mrs BacPharmacist as to where to go to head off towards Huisinis. Tis a wonderful little drive along this road, bounding as it does, the ragged coastline of this area in North Harris. After countless bends and turns which opened up the wonderful vistas and then just as quickly closed them again, the road arrives at the boundary of Amhuinnsuidhe Castle, a fine edifice in a tremendous setting where one can enjoy corporate events, get married or kill things in the name of 'sport'. We didn't go in - we wern't dressed for the part. We didn't pass through the gate either but parked up and walked up the nearby road towards the fish-farm and the little hydro-electric power station. The track passes alongside a loch and rises up to a reservoir before running along the waters edge. Its a wonderful place to be and well worth the stroll up. We enjoyed, had a snack and came home.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Jura eh? That was May!

Just had a fine visitation from Toots and the Coelyns. It seems we are about to make a book of Lewis Photographica's trip to the Isle of Jura earlier this year. No doubt it will be a grand affair with a classy cover and images to match. And mine will be nestling in there too. Like this one.
Tea was drunk, Tunnocks eaten and a walk taken. All good then.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

I meant to say.....

The other day these chaps arrived bearing technology. It seems I was to be interviewed. An incomer in North Tolsta? “Why here?” they asked. And I sat, waiting for inspiration. But it didn’t come, I faltered. The people are wonderful in the village I ventured – but of course I wasn’t to know that before I lived here. We bought a lovely little house here – that’s why really. It’s nice and small in a quiet village without a through road. You can walk down the road and no-one’s there [just like Cream sang] and, and. I sat a bit, smiled and wondered what to say. The technology bearing people were very nice, they make lovely TV programmes I’m told [we have no TV and will not have one until I know the technology is going to catch on J] and I tried be interesting. I failed. Miserably and I’m annoyed with myself.

Perhaps this is what I should have said;

When you sit and listen – you hear nothing but the flapping of seabirds’ wings and the distant roar of the sea on the beaches. Unless there is a bit of a blow when the rain comes in from the sea, the wind roars across Tolsta Head and plays a tune on your roof tiles. Or it snows and the village is transformed for a few days or weeks – the crofters out on their old Massy Fergusons to feed the sheep and cows.

When the sun comes up, it glows gently behind Stac Polly on the mainland across the Minch lighting up a jagged line of mountains from the top of Scotland to Skye. As it rises further it lights up the heather on the peat-moor behind the village and the old peat tracks stand out like rivers of stone and mud. And you are reminded of the old island ways.

Then the sun’s rays reach the golden sand on the lovely beaches – beaches where your just as likely to meet no-one on your walk, rain or shine.

Whatever the weather – and it varies a lot and regularly, it’s a wonderful place to be.

It’s something like that I wanted to say. So, if you happen to see the programme sometime, just remember what I meant to say!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

When Home is just where you are

I found these beings looking for all the world so at home in what is some human's former home - an old black-house in the village. And they have nice view of The Minch as they munch.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

The Slaughterhouse three

Sadly, these three Pilgrim sheeps are on their way not to return soon. They will become 'unstuck in time'.

Taken on the HOLGA for WTCD

Saturday, October 09, 2010

To the fank

Stepping out boldly my feet damp from being washed by soggy peat underfoot, I'm coming over from SmitVaal. The dog is screeching at me cause I didn't take her for a walk while the sun shone. And I don't care. This day is for me, my selfish me. So, I walk faster ignoring her stroppy shouting. Over there is the sea, the Minch deep blue under the bright sun but oh so cold. So very cold. To my left is the fank where the good folk of North Tolsta are gathering to catch up on the news, bask in the sun and, if there's time to dip a few hundred sheep. But where's The Crofter? No, he's not there yet. Probably seeing to another crises over on The Croft.
Maybe I will go back and take Ghriet out for a walk after all.

Friday, October 08, 2010


In the Frigate cafe'.
Assynt sea
We had some fine fun that weekend. Deanne, Sonja, Cailean and I while Eve, Stephan and Mr Windy slogged round the hills on the bicycles. And when all were together too we had fun too. Fun in the cafe, in the restaurant, in Ullapool, Lochinver and elsewhere too. It's a wonder there is so much fun to be had up here.

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

Dave Macleod

Spent a nice evening in Stornoway in some soul-less hotel room getting frightened, inspired and amazed as Great CLIMB climber Dave Macleod regaled us with tales from rock. And things. Goodness sakes, the man is off his rocker! I mean, there he was hanging from one arm 600ft in mid-air on some wet rock in North Harris with a gale bowing and all that and he saying " How wonderful it is to be here". Brilliant evening and just the thing while the wind blows still outside! Check out Mr Macleod's blog.

Meanwhile, some of you might like to meet Maisey whom we feed since her mum moved away and her step-dad Alasdair passed on. She's a lovely albeit wildish creature who is happy to take the food but less keen to make friends. Ah well, she's happy.

Sunday, October 03, 2010


I've been playing with glass plates again. I have a stash of unused plates of various vintages to shoot - although they are very old so sensitivety and devlopment is mainly guesswork. Steve Smith of the Isle of Wight has very kindly sent me a 4x5 plate holder so I'll be shooting soonish.
Anyway, today while sorting out the darkishroom, I found a box of Royal Standard exposed plates [made in around 1910 by Cadett & Neail Ltd, Wealdstone, Middlesex and maybe exposed 1920?] . Have scanned them and here they are. Know them?

No idea where I acquired these plates but I love them and as soon as I sort the darkroom I'll print them.

Friday, October 01, 2010


Mr Windy is on his way to North Tolsta on his bicycle as I tap on the keyboard. Tis blowin a minor hooly outside so I'm not expecting him anytime soonish. He better not take too long as the Tunnocks will be gone - and I'm not sure if they are still on strike at the factory so perhaps there will be no more !

Later; Windy arrived amid a flurry of rain and looking rather windswept. Hoovered up the Tunnocks and left :-)