Archive for May, 2013

It’s been a while, but I return

Hello!

Yup, a little later than predicted, but I am back with another post from my recent download. I have been here there and everywhere of late so apologies for that but, on with the pictures, you don’t want to hear excuses!

Moving on chronologically in my SD card, the next few pictures cover a quick wander down to Port Lion..just a short walk down the road..but there wasn’t the weather to go further as it would have been a waste of time. Mind you, when I was down there, I got some surprise visitors…

Firstly, on the way down, a previously seen little brook crosses under the road, so it’s always worth stopping as the water can be different colours, different volume and such so it’s always worth a look. On this occasion it had been quite dry for a short time so the flow was about normal and the water was clear, so I used a polariser to get some detail of the rocks on the stream bed at the bottom of the picture.

A little water off the hills in sloooow motion

A little water off the hills in sloooow motion

Moving on down, having been down a few times of late I noticed that there was another hulk laid up on the beach in a very sorry state. In comparison to the quite possibly ocean going yachts in the background, it doesn’t give a very good impression sat on the beach! Having said that, I can say I have NEVER seen either of the large yachts that lie in the middle of the estuary move and I have lived here for 6 years. What’s that all about? You need to be rich or dim to waste money like that, surely?

If this was a car park, that boat would have been clamped!

If this was a car park, that boat would have been clamped!

I’m sure someone has bought this with the best of intentions but when it’s in this state, wouldn’t you work on it as often as possible?! I think it can float, but this may be the only thing it would be able to do constantly and maybe not all that well, judging by all the water in it.

No mast and still in some kind of cradle, what a shame

No mast and still in some kind of cradle, what a shame

There was me busy taking pictures of the boat, when I looked round to see a gaggle, or at least a family, of swans rounding on me. I could almost hear them chanting “bread, bread, bread” of which I unfortunately had none, after all, I don’t carry a granary roll in my pocket every time I go out! It was very nice to see that the family was a big one, Mum, Dad and 3 nippers that had grown very well by all accounts. I say this as I have heard of some evil people not so far away breaking swan eggs for fun…I know some people don’t get on with swans, but that’s just wrong.

"He's got no bread! if we stick our heads in the water, maybe he will go away"

“He’s got no bread! if we stick our heads in the water, maybe he will go away”

Once they had figured out that I wasn’t able to feed them, a lot of beak dabbling ensued and I managed to get a nice picture of two of the youngsters giving me the evils after they’d had their heads underwater, water still dripping off their bills which I thought was nice.

The youngsters were very trusting, to a point, this is as close as I dared to get

The youngsters were very trusting, to a point, this is as close as I dared to get

The only thing that would have made things a bit nicer would have been the sun being out, but hey, got to make the best of what you get haven’t you? Things have brightened up of late, but I would hardly call it Summer just yet. as I type, it is once again raining. On the plus side, it fills up the waterfalls for my later pictures!

Anyway, things seemed to have calmed down now, so hopefully I will be able to keep posting every week or 10 days as I did before; keep popping back, I very much appreciate any comments you wish to make and remember, if you REALLY like a picture, I can email it to you 🙂

Thanks for stopping by!

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The anatomy of a sunset

Greetings loyal followers!

Apologies for the delay of late, things have been a touch manic here of late due to work mainly but also I’m back sailing again but the weather has been awful and days are cancelled last-minute, so I never know when I’m going out. Sorry. Also, if you think things are getting back to normal (roughly a weekly post) think again, as I’m not near my PC next weekend, so it will be another week or so after that.

However, on the bright side, I have downloaded my SD card to the PC (and backed it up to DVD of course) so I have new material. Yay! Around 1100 images to be precise.

In the first instance, and because they were the earliest images on the card, I thought I may show you the life of a sunset and explain the science behind the colours in it. My god! The man’s a scientist. Nope, I’m afraid it’s all gathered from websites as I can’t explain things as well as they can. Anyway, here goes…

Firstly, you need some nicely textured clouds at the right level and a window pointing the right way, as I did. This particular evening, I could see that there was some cirrus (my favourite type of cloud) mixed with open cell or “popcorn” clouds. The wind up at that level was also fairly strong it would appear, as the were trails leading away from the uppermost clouds which were castings shadows.

From my bedroom, I could see that the clouds had promise at this point

From my bedroom, I could see that the clouds had promise at this point

Here, in portrait aspect, you can see that the shadows are a touch more distinct and the colour is getting a little deeper, although it is still predominantly orange. At this stage, I was stood on a little step straining to get the right angle for the picture!

A little darker, a little more orange and a few more shadows

A little darker, a little more orange and a few more shadows

Now the colours are deep still, although the best is yet to come. However, here comes the science bit explaining the change in colours; as a ray of white sunlight travels through the atmosphere to my little eye, some of the colours are scattered out of the beam by air molecules and particles, changing the final colour of the beam I see (or the camera sees!). Because the shorter wavelength components, such as blue and green, scatter more strongly, these colours are pretty much removed from the beam.

Although this is slightly underexposed, it is how the cloud appeared. Loving those shadows...miles and miles long

Although this is slightly underexposed, it is how the cloud appeared. Loving those shadows…miles and miles long

At sunset, when the path through the atmosphere is longer due to the curvature of the earth, the blue and green components are removed almost completely leaving the longer wavelength orange and red you can see in the pictures. The remaining reddened sunlight can then be scattered by cloud droplets and other relatively large particles to light up the horizon red and orange; near where I live you get some very red sunsets and using this explanation I can only guess that the refinery at Milford Haven may assist in pushing out these particles. This also explains why they are longer and deeper sunset colours when volcanoes erupt and scatter ash. These particles account for making gorgeous reds and pinks like this….

Just at the point where colour is starting to fade. I can't help but look at sunsets like this; doesn't it look like someone got a big paintbrush and just painted this with those trailing lines?

Just at the point where colour is starting to fade. I can’t help but look at sunsets like this; doesn’t it look like someone got a big paintbrush and just painted this with those trailing lines?

Pretty complicated eh? Mind you, I find it fascinating to be honest. To think that some guy thousands of miles away, maybe in another country, is seeing the sun as bright light that is then ending up in my camera as pink or red. Sometimes, we take these things for granted and I find it amazing that people pass things like this by day in and day out. Even if I’m not taking pictures for the blog, I always look at the sunsets or sunrises, if I’m up early enough…I can’t help but try and work all the science out. Hope I haven’t bored you!

Lastly, a bit of a random picture. I found these fungi in a wood not so far from the house. They look like red roses but I couldn’t get any closer to have a proper look. Can anyone tell me what they are?

Random fungi. I can't quite understand the bright red aspect of these, unless it's to attract or deter animals or something?

Random fungi. I can’t quite understand the bright red aspect of these, unless it’s to attract or deter animals or something?

Well, then. It’s good to be back and there are some nice pictures coming your way I assure you, so keep popping back when you get the email, I really appreciate it. Next time, I promise not to be all scientific!

See you in a couple of weeks.

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