Pre-Op Ramblings – Part Nine

Well, it’s all happening now. It’s as official as it’s going to get without me donning a hospital gown. Last Wednesday I spent the afternoon at the “one-stop clinic” (known affectionately as the “round robin”) at Musgrove Park Hospital. I had a pre-op assessment – ECG, blood tests, blood pressure, peak flow and MRSA screening. […]

Sunset Time Lapse

A video taken using the NEX-6 time lapse app – 30 seconds long, but took around 20 minutes to film.

Or if the embedded video doesn’t show up for you, it’s on Flickr here.

Here’s the setup – camera sitting on Gorillapod, in the spare room window. Trying to point the camera between splats of bird poop.

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The length of paracord you can see tied to the camera is just attached to the window frame above, so if the cat decided to knock the camera off the windowsill, it wouldn’t fall far.

Lensbaby Creative Aperture Kit 2

Whirlpool by Bjorn Rannestad

I picked up this set on eBay, from SRS Camera and Image Solutions, who seem to have quite a bit of Lensbaby stock at very good prices. I haven’t ever really got the hang of Lensbaby, and they seemed like a cheap way of tempting me into experimenting a bit more.

Most lenses have a variable aperture, which opens and closes. There are usually six or more blades, making a shape somewhere in the region of a circle. A six-blade aperture will usually make a hexagonal shape, though the blades may be curved to make the opening a bit more circular. Points of light that are out of focus will make the shape of the aperture – usually circular when the lens is wide open, but often hexagonal, octagonal, or other similar shapes when the aperture is partly closed.

The shape also affects the quality of the out of focus parts of an image, known as bokeh. More circular apertures are usually thought of as giving better bokeh, but opinion varies.

Because most of the optics in the Lensbaby system use discs with holes cut in them for aperture, they’re usually perfectly circular. These aren’t. These are aperture disks with shapes and patterns cut into them. For these photos, I just took an out-of-focus photo of some coloured lights with each disc in the set. The points of light show the shape of the discs.

Click for the gallery of all the aperture discs in this set…


The people in the bottom level flat in our block have recently welcomed a new family member – a labradoodle. It may not be a coincidence that their cat, Benson, has become a bit more friendly to other people. He used to be a top-rate ignorer. I could stand right near him, calling his name, and he just didn’t notice me. Now, he rolls over for some attention. Still looks the other way, though, just so I don’t start thinking he’s being friendly or anything.

Benson Looks Away