Sunday, May 31, 2015

In the dark again

Can you imagine? I mean, look at that snap - something horrible about it. Must have been the flash thing I think. Otherwise this room would have looked lovely and tidy. With the light off and the door shut that is.
I go in here from time to time. Pour some chemicals into a film shaky-about-thing, pour it out again and then pour some more in. That's how I develop the film. Sometimes I even get the time and temperature correct too. Only the room's usually too cold or too hot and always too damp! The fridge in there is rusting away and that's the second one! I know where things are though. Can you imagine That?

Ooh, I think I feel a printing sesh coming on!

Saturday, May 30, 2015

Cyclists eh?

Here we have two erbs from Glasgow way who came up here searching for that ultimate cycling experience or something. I think they found it as they sheltered from the 'sunshine' behind this wall. These two are more used to the boards of the indoor velodromes of the world having both ridden Commonwealth Games - and won medals. [see here  and here ].

Lovely to keep bumping into them - metaphorically speaking - all day a week or so back.

Friday, May 29, 2015

Muriel, the horse and a man

Muriel's happy. She and her lovely horsey have just won a rosette for leaping about inside the shed thing. The man let her out.

My energy levels are rising again I think. For days now my ebb has been at it's lowest. My 'go' had not even shown itself to get and and go. But the sun shined today, I dusted [!] an things, walked to The Crofter and all.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015


It's just a TV set. Or maybe a film set. I don't know, I not seen this finished thing in either format. The set was rebuilt for some reason in an Lanntair from the filming of Katie Morag. No, no idea.

Anyway, I snook in and snook a snap with the Pentax Espio Mini which I am beginning to really like.

Monday, May 25, 2015

Look where we've been and everything. The arena on the side of the loch near toon. Horses inside and out. leaping about, trotting and pooing a lot. Having their toe-nails polished, tails brushed and what have you.

The judgey people were well excellent too with a fine line in hats to brighten the days proceedings. I liked the hats particularly. See, that's a judgey person in the ring - with hat.

Sunday, May 24, 2015

It is he

Bumped into him and his lovely Mum in toon yesterday so I snapped him while he was there. I think it captures him very well.

Saturday, May 23, 2015


Don't tell me we have not got classy architecture - if you call Brutalism classy that is.

Waiting for the bus at a church in Tolsta

Friday, May 22, 2015

One mad dog

I know Boysie. He slobbers over me from time to time and it's not very easy to stop him doing so. But he makes a fine portrait.

I had a Pentax Espio Mini with me and it seemed to do the job.

There he is, Boysie the Great Dane with Chris his plaything!

I think I prefer cats.

Thursday, May 21, 2015

A binscape with smudge and related development information which may or may be useful.

Bin Scape with big thing in background [and smudge].

Not sure how that happened but the Castle seemed to loom there. The smudge came from goodness knows where - which is a bit unfair as the old place is looking spick and span in and out these days.

I'd sloshed the film - Foma400 rated at 200 -in Rodinal 1 :50 which seems to work ok although without the sharpness of Tmax400 for example but a lot less cost. Been trying Tmax developer with Foma400 and recently was hoping to use Firstcall developer too - but can't find any suitable times. Maybe I might wing it!

Wednesday, May 20, 2015


This was me yesterday. I'd been getting ready to go out to meet my dear Eve for our annual savoury cream tea picnic harbour-side in memoriam of my late mum. The camera was there sitting on the table side. I took a snap [developed the film quickly] and went out. This is what that snap looks like. I rather like it. Captured the essence of my personality and possibly the personality of my essence too.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015


Found this lively Glaswegian trying to grab an electronic facsimile of a pile of old stones the other day. Whilst he was awaiting peeps to get out of his shot I was waiting for the flippin stones to get out of mine.

Nice chap mind. The stone is to your left!

Monday, May 18, 2015

Maybe I will

My reader asked me about my darkroom and the extensive facilities I have here on the island for developing and sometimes printing films. Well, it's the old peat shed next to the house that also houses the bikes. Only thing, when I go in there to snap it up for you it's always dark. Funny that. So you'll have to make do with a couple of snaps of Mr Toots who is always sometimes full of brightness.

See, the great man almost smiled as he stood leaning against the rubbish thing at Carloway harbour. Almost. Can't blame him really, I hate having my snap taken even if it is a wonderful style and by a lovely photographer [blushing now :-) ]. Mr Toots told me some tale about the railway planned by Lord Leverhulme to transport fish from this his new harbour to Stornoway. As if!

Perhaps it was because I caught him red handed trying to quickly hide the newly baked cakes as I arrived the other day, Pentax-P30 in hand and everything.  Nice light bouncing off his not so bald head though.

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Tuft of grassy stuff

This tuft of stuff - all greenish and waving in the wind down there by that pier that lives in Bayble - stood still long enough for me to make a portrait of it. The road is nice, it likes to show you the pier.

Saturday, May 16, 2015

On the main road

Obviously the ferry at Tarbet had not come in otherwise there may be a few vehicles coming this way. Oh, and look at that, the sun was shining. Must look in my diary and see what year that was.

Cycling and Mr Barrett our resident cycle book author.

Friday, May 15, 2015

Told you so,,

It is raining as I write. It was raining as I sat in the car.
Did you know it rains here from time to time?

It was sunny yesterday. People smiled. I like that.

Thursday, May 14, 2015

That's a great question...

It's because I have a cold, cough and suchlike. The ribs are aching, the throat is sore and this is the second week! Hence I have not been going 'out on a wing' as I hoped I might be able to. 'Do' something off the wall, print a 5x7 once I'd taken it. Just cyanotype or Vandyke mind.

In the meantime I'm trawling the negs I've taken recently for something to show - as I must. Every day if possible. Why? No idea but I must.

Apologies again for the lack of interestingness in this shot that has been taken a thousand million times. But not here, not with this camera and film.

I shall be better soon and a creative spirit will blossom. I hope.

Wednesday, May 13, 2015


The world owes me nothing.
To fund breathing and eating, a roof over my head and things like that I rely on my wonderful Eve - oh, and working. Not too much work that might get in the way of living but enough so I can help the household finances. And buy film.

So sometimes I combine the two - working and living. Found myself near here the other evening so I stopped did the 'paperwork' - always paperwork eh? Except we have paperwork which is repeated paperlessly. Twice.

I sat writing, thinking a bit, recovering my senses from an earlier visit and had a little stroll breathing the cool air, feeling the breeze. I then took some snaps with the OM1n. This is one of they.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Bucolic Tolsta

Oh, what a tranquil scene. Hector sat on his re-chassied quad while Ishbell his lovely wife fills the trailor with straw stuff in the garage. The peats await burning and a horse cloddops down the lane in the sunshine.
Tolsta eh?

Monday, May 11, 2015

Happy campers

The usual influx of campers in their mobile gizmo carriers are here. Find a car park, a deserted bit of old road, a nice view [pretty much everywhere as it happens] and you are likely to find a camper van.
Found this odd looking German registered possibly ex-military van in toon the other day. The sun was shining then - it's peeing down now. I hope they have something to do!

I'd dug out an old PentaxP30 slr for a change and I wasn't sure the exposure thing was indicating correctly. I clicked things about a bit and now I've developed the Tmax400 film in Firstcall Superfine developer, all the negs look just great. Apart from the subject matter that is.

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Have you looked down there

Do you ever look at my sidebar? I mean, the sidebar on here the blog - down there on the right. There's a list of other blogs arranged in order of recentude. They are all great reads. Go and have a look. I won't berate you - as long as you come back here sometime.

There's John with his carefully considered images - all Leica'd up. Either film or digital. You takes yer pick.
Keith from CaNada with all his camera collection and images taken with them.
Monochrome Archives - lovely.
Arlsan is always worth a peek.

BTW; the snap I have posted is a portrait of Glenelg area. I think it is anyway. Nice anyway.

Saturday, May 09, 2015

... with plenty of potential

.... and not much other than potential I'd think - even if it were for sale. Pity mind you, tis a lovely area down there. North Lochs area of Lewis since you ask.

The vote thing drove me out and about - along with the cold wind accompanying the welcome sunlight.The Fed 6 wasn't really playing with the Industar 26 properly, and I wasn't playing at being clever either. Enjoyed myself all the same despite having dropped my lovely partner Eve at the airport that morning so she could have a few days with her lovely Mum in Yorkshire.

Friday, May 08, 2015

Bin there, done that

Now, a few days ago, my reader mentioned [in a rather cutting way that sent me into a spiral of despair ending the consumption of two, yes 2 chocolate cream eggs] about a bin in a portrait of the road I snapped. I am sure Mr Ravilious would have done the same had the plastic bins been around at the time and there had been nice light, an urchin or two playing with a lamb with the sun behind them.

So I went out today with a plastic 'camera' of the very cheap kind that has no controls and took some more 'DustbinScapes'. I like the first one with big dustbin although the Loch behind rather detracts fro it - as does the quality of the snap. The sun was shining you see and that threw me - had the wrong film in the 'camera' and compounded that by over-developing it.

The second snap is a dream - or perhaps a nightmare - although not sure who put the car there. At least the car blocks out some of them stone lumps behind. Imagine.

Now, the piece of resistance. An assemblage of dustbins in toon.

All took with the wonderful Reader's Digest PN 919 . Plastic at its worst to complement the plastic dustbinscapes.

Thursday, May 07, 2015

Portraits of people

Now, lets put this in perspective. I took this snap a while back. I was younger and with my little sister in East Berlin in the sunshine with a camera and all that. The locals didn't seem that keen on talking to us - suspecting our spying intents no doubt - and the night in the folk club serving nice beir hadn't happened. Although, I might add here, the night involving nice beir in a bar somewhere in the west of Berlin had. The print I have is small, scanned badly and is reproduced here because I can. As you may notice, I had already found out that being in focus is for the weak!

On the other hand, I took this snap last week. I was older but plainly not wiser - the camera almost got Douglas the lock-keeper at Laggan Locks in focus. Nice chap. We liked him.

I have a cold now. My head is aching, nose running, throat sore and I am whinging. I do that you know.

Wednesday, May 06, 2015


Ok, I realise it's not your actual Erwin Elliott but the good things are that dogs rarely disapprove of having their image purloined.

Tuesday, May 05, 2015

Have you seen this?

A great continual blog about photographs made with Tim Andrews. Well worth a look if you have not seen it yet.


Monday, May 04, 2015

We saw trees

We don't have many trees here on the island - apart from a few small conifer plantations and the Stornoway Castle grounds. And since we seemed to see a lot of trees while we were off island - standing still and everything I took to making a couple of snaps. I feel that James Ravilious was looking over my shoulder when I took this one!

Sunday, May 03, 2015

There be fairies here

We didn't see any fairies there. Not unless they walk with a stoop and the help of walking sticks now we didn't. Not sure I'd know what to say to a fairy should I have met one that day. Never gave it thought and now feel so foolish. I mean, I'd have just stood there and everything - or blurted out something inappropriate. I shall have to re-read my Rupert annuals to remind myself how one speaks to a fairy.
Pity, since I had a camera with Foma400-200 all ready at the time.

Saturday, May 02, 2015

In this post I shall attempt to say something interesting and useful.

This is, now where was this again? No idea come to think about it. Somewhere over there [pointing out the window]. Nice place though. We had a walk. took a snap and talked about how nice it was. Still is I'm sure.
I took the snap with a camera. The one I had with me at the time. And Foma400 rated at 200. I still think the snap is nice.

Friday, May 01, 2015

Charles Menzies

Mr Charles Menzies' Junk boat which is his delightful home and on which Eve and I spent a lovely hour drinking coffee and changing the world. I liked Charles. He likes bicycles too. How good is that?

There he is. Who does he remind you of eh? Tell me that. Charles has a lovely work partner whom we had the pleasure of meeting - she is a duathlonist - or what ever one call them. I mean, she isn't but should be. Had the requisite earrings for it and everything.

If you require a shipwright to twiddle your bit of big string, rub your strakes or varnish something, then this is the man you need. At Gairlochy.

For the artistes of analogue photographic wonderfulness, you may be wondering about 'the glow'. It's because I didn't realise I was using asa50 Polypan-f, rated it at 200 and developed accordingly!